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Video of woman goes viral after she gets head stuck in truck’s exhaust pipe

A 19-year-old woman who authorities said had a little too much fun at a Minnesota music festival last weekend now has an unintended claim to fame after getting her head stuck in a truck’s oversized exhaust pipe. 

Kaitlyn Strom’s strange situation Friday at the Winstock Country Music Festival was captured in a five-second video that has since been viewed millions of times. 

Strom told the Hutchinson Leader that she was hanging out with friends on the festival’s first day when she spotted the red truck.

“We were just all having fun and I saw this big exhaust pipe and I was, like, ‘Hey, my head could probably fit in that,’” Strom said.

Fit, it did. Come back out, it did not. 

>> Read more trending  news

Strom was stuck for about 45 minutes as her friends summoned help. The Winsted Fire Department responded to the scene, where firefighters cut her head out of the pipe. 

The short video of the incident, posted to multiple Facebook pages, shows a firefighter preparing to cut the pipe with what appears to be a hydraulic rescue tool also known as the “Jaws of Life.”

Paramedics examined Strom after she was freed, but she was not seriously injured. She did, however, get a citation for underage drinking from the McLeod County Sheriff’s Office, the Leader reported

She also got a few moments of internet infamy, which she discovered upon arriving home around 3 a.m. Saturday and seeing the video for the first time. 

“I never expected it to happen,” Strom told the newspaper. “I’m just from Litchfield. I’m not widely known, so it’s crazy to have everyone reaching out to me and stuff.”

Commenters on social media had a range of reactions to Strom’s self-inflicted predicament. Billy Little, one of the people who posted the video, wrote that he had to hear Strom’s side of the story.

“How much alcohol does it take to get your head stuck in a diesel pickup’s exhaust tip?” Little wrote

Someone at an Indiana clothing store called Lamood Big Hats also posted about Strom.

“Please only put oversized hats on your head and not oversized tailpipes,” the store’s Facebook post read

Other commenters were not nearly as kind to Strom, who embraced her embarrassing moment by posting a photo of herself holding the exhaust tip as she and the truck’s owner, Tom Wold, each give a thumbs-up sign. 

“Yeah, I’m the tailpipe girl, whatchu know about it?” Strom wrote on Facebook. “#winstock2k18kickedmy(expletive).”

A cropped version of the photo has been used by news media in Minnesota and across the country.

Strom told the Leader she wasn’t letting the internet vitriol get to her.

“I’m just brushing it off, because that’s expected to happen,” Strom said. 

She said she was focusing instead on the positivity of all the people who helped her in her time of need, including Wold, who also took the incident in stride. 

“He was wonderful,” Strom told the Leader. “I remember getting my head unstuck, and I just looked at him and apologized, and he said, ‘No, I’m just glad you’re OK. Don’t worry about it.’”

Wold, who lives in Darwin, loaned the exhaust pipe to a bar there to drum up business.

“Ladies and gentlemen! Step right up and see the most famous tailpipe in Minnesota, quite possibly the world,” a post on the Darwin Tavern’s Facebook page read Wednesday. “Stop on down for a cold beverage, great food and the Winstock tailpipe! See you down here folks!”

The post included the hashtags #winstock18 and #tailpipegirl.

Though the bar’s post also invited some cruel comments toward Strom, the majority of commenters were a little more light-hearted. One man joked that the Occupational Safety and Health Administration had a new safety sticker for guys with big tailpipes on their trucks.

“Danger! Do not place any body parts into exhaust tip,” the mocked-up sticker read. “You think this would go without saying, but Winstock ’18 ….”

An image on the fake sticker shows a stick person with their head stuck in a tailpipe.

Strom told the Leader this was her first year at Winstock, which she plans to attend in the future -- just maybe not next year. 

Dancing FBI agent accused of accidental shooting arrested

An FBI agent whose gun went off after it flew from his pants while he was dancing at a Denver nightclub earlier this month has turned himself in to face charges, according to the Denver District Attorney’s Office.

>> Read more trending news

Authorities identified the agent as Chase Bishop, 29. He faces one count of second-degree assault and could face more charges, pending the results of a blood alcohol content analysis, Denver District Attorney Beth McCann said Tuesday.

“We are filing this charge now rather than waiting until the BAC report is received, which we understand could take another week, because sufficient evidence has been presented to file it,” McCann said. “If an additional charge needs to be filed after further evidence is received, we can file those charges then.”

>> Off-duty FBI agent accidentally shoots man after gun drops while dancing: reports

Bishop was off-duty in the early morning hours of June 2 when he was caught on camera surrounded by people and dancing at the Mile High Spirits Distillery and Tasting Bar in Denver’s Lower Downtown neighborhood, according to the Denver Post and KMGH

In video obtained by KMGH, Bishop can be seen performing a backflip in the center of the dance circle. As he jumps, a gun can be seen falling from his waistband. Authorities said the gun went off when he grabbed it, striking a person in the leg.

Officials said the victim suffered a serious injury, but that it did not appear to be life-threatening. The bullet hit an artery in the victim’s leg, according to the Post. The man’s attorney, Frank Azar, told the newspaper that his client was expected to recover.

Employees at Mile High Spirits questioned Bishop’s decision to bring a loaded gun to the nightclub in a statement released after the shooting.

“It is shocking that the only shooting to ever occur at our establishment came about as a result of an FBI agent entering our distillery tasting room carrying a loaded firearm without our knowledge, in violation of our rules,” the statement said. “We are deeply saddened by the events that occurred and look forward to speaking with representatives of the FBI, so we can come to understand his presence and his need to be armed in our establishment.”

Boater dies after sinkhole creates whirlpool on Arkansas river

At least one boater died Saturday after a sinkhole opened on the bed of Spring River in northern Arkansas, creating a whirlpool, according to the Arkansas Game and Fish Commission.

>> Read more trending news

The boating accident happened around noon Saturday in the whirlpool, near Dead Man’s Curve in Fulton County officials said. Authorities did not elaborate on what caused the accident.

Officials from Fulton County, the AGFC and the Army Corps of Engineers have installed buoys and roped off the area where the whirlpool formed, near Sadler Falls, officials said Sunday. Authorities warned people to avoid the area, which is about 150 miles northeast of Little Rock.

“The river is still open, but the barricaded area should not be breached,” AGFC officials said.

The commission said engineers will check the area this week.

Police: Man, woman steal TV from pawn shop – then pawn it back to same shop

New Orleans police investigators are looking for two people accused of stealing a television from an Algiers pawn shop -- and immediately pawning it back to the same shop. 

The pair, identified by police as Don Adams, 32, and Dana Francois-Carter, 38, were spotted by the store’s security cameras during the May 31 heist, a New Orleans Police Department news release said

Police officials said the camera captured Adams and Francois-Carter entering the store around 5:20 p.m. that day, at which point Francois-Carter headed to the electronics section. 

Francois-Carter took the TV from the shelf and removed the price tag from it, police officials said. She then took it to the front counter.

Adams, using his own identification, then pawned the TV for $175, the news release said

>> Read more trending news

Anyone with information on Adams or Francois-Carter is asked to call detectives at 504-685-6040 or 504-658-6045. Anonymous tips can also be submitted to Crime Stoppers at 504-822-1111 or 1-877-903-STOP.

WATCH: Alligator moves Florida couple's patio furniture in the middle of the night

A Florida couple got some unexpected – and unwanted – help from an outdoor decorator: an alligator.

>> Watch the news report here

>> Read more Floridoh! stories 

Mary and Mike Charbonneau woke up Sunday morning to find their patio furniture piled against the front door.

“I asked my husband, ‘Hey, why is the furniture in front of the door?’ I thought, well, maybe when he was mowing the yard he had moved it," said Mary Charbonneau.

>> On WFTV.com: How often do alligator attacks happen?

Until they pulled up their home security footage on their iPad, the Charbonneaus thought a person had been to their house overnight. 

The couple is amazed the gator did not wake them or their dog because video shows the alligator stopped by around 1:40 a.m.

>> Read more trending news 

"He got tangled up in all this furniture, it's heavy furniture and he dragged it to the front door," said Mike Charbonneau. "We've seen gators in the neighborhoods in the ponds and stuff, but nothing coming up in people’s yards. This is a first for us." 

Lawyers for man who ate own eyeball argue he’s too mentally ill for execution

Lawyers representing a Texas death row inmate who killed his estranged wife and her two children, including her 13-month-old daughter, in 2004 are arguing this week that their mentally ill client should be allowed to continue appealing his death sentence in the infant’s slaying. 

Their oral arguments on behalf of Andre Thomas, 35, were held Tuesday before the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans. Thomas’ attorneys have for years argued that Thomas is too mentally ill to be put to death. 

Those claims are bolstered by the fact that Andre Thomas plucked out one of his eyes five days after his March 2004 arrest in the slayings, KSAT in San Antonio reported

Five years later, while housed on Texas’ death row, Thomas removed his second eye and ate it, according to prison officials. Texas Department of Corrections information shows that he is currently housed at the Beauford H. Jester IV psychiatric unit in Fort Bend County. 

The Houston Chronicle reported that Thomas suffers from schizophrenia, characterized by psychotic delusions and “hyper-religious preoccupations.” His lawyers have argued he was “actively psychotic” when he committed the crimes for which he was convicted. 

Thomas was found guilty of the March 27, 2004, slayings of Laura Christine Boren, 20, the couple’s son, Andre Lee Boren, 4, and Boren’s infant daughter, Leyha Marie Hughes. According to KSAT, the three victims were stabbed to death and their hearts ripped from their chests. 

In Boren’s case, Thomas missed her heart and removed a portion of her lung instead, according to a 2013 profile of Thomas in Texas Monthly. Thomas, then 21 years old, stabbed himself in the chest multiple times, laid on the floor next to his wife’s body and waited to die, the magazine said. 

When he didn’t, he pocketed the organs he had cut out and walked five miles to his home. He went to the Sherman Police Department a few hours later and confessed, Texas Monthly reported. 

“I thought it was what God wanted me to do,” Thomas told investigators, according to the magazine

After he plucked out his eye while awaiting trial in the Grayson County Jail, Thomas repeatedly asked hospital personnel to let him see his wife and beg her forgiveness, which he said he had already obtained from the children. 

“I love her, and I need her to forgive me,” he told them of Boren, Texas Monthly said

Court documents filed before Tuesday’s oral arguments said Thomas’ mental illness went undiagnosed and untreated “until after the delusions it caused led him to commit the crime here,” KSAT reported. One of his attorneys, Catherine M.A. Carroll, also argued that her client’s trial lawyers failed to challenge a judge’s ruling that found him competent to stand trial. 

Carroll also claimed Thomas’ trial lawyers did not request a competency hearing and that jurors were not given enough information on the defendant’s long history of mental illness, the news station said

Texas Monthly reported Thomas began telling classmates about the voices in his head when he was as young as 10 years old. By the age of 13, Thomas had made his second suicide attempt, the magazine reported. 

>> Read more trending news

Carroll also alleged that the jury in the case was racially biased against Thomas, who is black. Boren, his estranged wife, was white. 

The Chronicle reported that the jury that convicted Thomas was all white. Four of the jurors were allowed to serve, despite expressing opposition to interracial marriage.

One juror said it was not “what God intended,” and another said white people “should stay with (their) bloodline,” the newspaper reported

Prosecutors are contesting the appeal, according to KSAT. They have argued that, while mentally disabled people are barred from being executed, the courts have not extended that same prohibition to the mentally ill. 

“The Fifth Circuit has consistently refused to find a connection between the intellectually disabled and the mentally ill, repeatedly rejecting arguments like the one Thomas makes now,” Assistant Texas Attorney General Fredericka Sargent wrote, according to the news station

A federal judge in 2016 rejected Thomas’ appeal, prompting this week’s oral arguments seeking the ability to keep the appeal going. 

Fired gym worker accused in hatchet killing of ex-boss nabbed in Kentucky

A Nashville man accused of using a hatchet to kill the gym owner who fired him last year has been caught by troopers with the Kentucky State Police, authorities said. 

Domenic Micheli, 36, was arrested Tuesday night in Bowling Green after an alert motorist on Interstate 65 recognized the Toyota Prius the fugitive was driving, the Tennessean reported. Micheli had been on the run since the slaying of Joel Paavola, 46, early Monday morning. 

“Due to the media coverage of out Nashville, the caller was able to ID the car and the subject,” Lt. Jeremy Smith, a Kentucky State Police spokesman, told the newspaper

Troopers were able to catch up with Micheli and pull him over about 25 minutes after the call from the motorist. Micheli was arrested without incident. 

Metro Nashville police officials said that Paavola, the well-known owner of Balance Training, in Belle Meade, was helping clients with a workout routine just before 7 a.m. Monday when a man, later identified as Micheli, walked in with a hatchet and another bladed weapon, described as either another hatchet or a large knife. 

Paavola fired Micheli from his job at the gym 14 months ago, the Tennessean reported

>> Read more trending news

Witnesses told police that Micheli struck Paavola with the weapons multiple times before leaving, police officials said in a statement. Paavola died on the way to Vanderbilt University Medical Center. 

“Just a senseless, brutal, violent attack this morning on Mr. Paavola as he was there in the business,” Metro Nashville Police Department spokesman Don Aaron told the Tennessean Monday

Surveillance footage from the parking garage underneath the strip mall where the gym is located showed that Micheli was driving an older model silver Yaris or Prius, the police statement saidThe Tennessean reported that the footage showed Micheli pacing in the garage before the attack on Paavola. 

The suspect was next spotted less than 90 minutes after the attack at a Gallatin urgent care facility, where he limped in and asked for a suture kit, the newspaper reported. He refused to wait or provide his personal information and left. 

Surveillance footage obtained by investigators next showed Micheli around 9:15 a.m. Monday, approaching the counter of a drugstore in Gallatin, which is about 35 miles northeast of Belle Meade. In the video, he appears to be purchasing first aid items.

At one point, he is seen examining his clothing and his arms.

Before Micheli’s arrest, investigators were searching for him as far away as Oregon and Washington, D.C., where he was known to have previously spent time. Metro Nashville police officials said Monday that Micheli was arrested by the U.S. Secret Service on April 27 for driving his car to a checkpoint near the White House and refusing to move it. 

A GoFundMe page set up to help Paavola’s family collected more than double its $75,000 goal in one day. As of Wednesday afternoon, it had amassed close to $200,000. 

“Joel Paavola was a phenomenal man, father, husband and role model,” the fundraising page read. “He was bright, happy-go-lucky and never ceased to make you smile.”

The fundraising team said that Paavola always prioritized his wife and five children, who “were the most important and loved people in his life.”

“He always put his family first, and we want that to carry on after his unfortunate passing,” the page read

Tyson Ford, a family friend who created the page, told the Tennessean that he grew up with Paavola’s oldest son. He said the trainer was a father figure to him. 

“He took in a lot of his children’s friends,” Ford, 23, told the newspaper. “You just knew you could count on him. It was humbling to feel that from someone else.”

Ford said the goal of fundraisers was to “wrap (their) arms around (the family).”

Christina Burks, a former Nashville resident, told the Tennessean that she felt compelled to donate to the cause. 

“He was more than a trainer. He was one of my best friends in Nashville,” Burks, 30, told the newspaper. “He was there for me when my grandmother passed away and when my now-husband and I started dating.

“I can’t say enough good things about him.”

Belle Meade, which gets its name from Belle Meade Plantation, has the highest per capita income in Tennessee and one of the highest in the nation. It was named by Forbes as one of the 25 top places to retire rich.

Former Vice President Al Gore is just one of the prominent residents of the city.

Man bleeds to death on roof of house he broke into, police say

A Michigan man cut himself while breaking into houses last month and bled to death on the roof of one of his targets, police said. 

Vincent Parnell Reynolds, 36, of Petoskey, died May 27 after leaving a party he attended at a home east of the city, WPBN-TV in Traverse City reported. Police officials said Reynolds, who had recently moved to Petoskey from Saginaw for work, then broke into two houses nearby.

No one was home in the first house, but the homeowner was in the second one, the news station said. After a confrontation, Reynolds broke a window to escape onto the roof. 

“It’s our belief that, while he was breaking out the windows with his hands, he severed an artery in his arm and therefore had an arterial bleed and was losing a significant amount of blood,” Matthew Breed, director of the Petoskey Department of Public Safety, told WPBN

>> Read more trending news

Responding officers attempted to reach Reynolds using a ladder, but were too late to save him from the massive bleeding he suffered. Breed said Reynolds was unarmed at the time of the break-in. 

Investigators do not believe Reynolds intended to steal anything from the houses he broke into, the news station reported. They are awaiting toxicology reports to determine if he had been under the influence of anything when he died.  

Zombies in Florida? City alert accidentally blames the undead for power outage

Don't worry, Florida residents: You still have time to prepare for the zombie apocalypse, even though a strange alert sent early Sunday may have had many Lake Worth residents thinking otherwise.

>> Read more trending news 

According to the Palm Beach Post, the South Florida city mistakenly issued a "zombie alert for residents of Lake Worth and Terminus" – likely a reference to AMC's "The Walking Dead" – that blamed "extreme zombie activity" for a power outage.

>> Click here to see the alert

City spokesman Ben Kerr later told Facebook group Lake Worth Live that officials were "looking into reports that the system mentioned zombies," adding that the city "does not have any zombie activity currently," the Post reported.

>> Read more at PalmBeachPost.com

WATCH: Bear roams outside cabin rental office, hops into truck

A cabin rental office in Tennessee received surprise visitors this week.

>> Read more trending news 

A bear roamed the parking lot of the Chalet Village office on Wednesday, the Knoxville News Sentinel reported. After unsuccessfully trying to access a trash bin and pausing at the front door, the bear sauntered over to a company pickup truck and easily opened the door. The bear climbed into the back of the truck momentarily, before being shooed out by employees.

Chalet Village representative Cindy Dale Jenkins told the Knoxville News Sentinel that another bear paid a visit to a company truck on Thursday, this time settling into the driver's seat.

Jenkins said that employees should have followed the advice they give to guests, which is to keep all vehicles locked and to be aware that bears may be in the area.

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