Weird Wrap: No horses or bears, but witches OK

Bears are seen in this stock photo by Getty Images.
Stock photo by Getty Images

This story is about a couple who’ve been told to get off their high horse — literally!

For 25 years, Jackie Siemens and Kenny Rach — a Manitoba couple — rode their horses into the city. They even used the drive-thru lanes at local restaurants to get some takeout while on their horses: Fiona and Voodoo.

They were surprised to learn this was actually illegal in Selkirk, Man, where horses are not allowed on city streets, unless as part of a parade or a special event.

Rach and Siemens say the horses bring a smile to residents, especially to old folks, who haven’t seen horses in the city since they were very young. The couple has trained their horses to understand traffic lights and noise. Apparently, there haven’t been any complaints launched against the equines.

City officials, however, aren’t on the same page. They don’t want to mix vehicles, pedestrians and horses on streets. Some are concerned about children’s safety if a horse gets scared due to noise or provocation.

How about a horse-thru lane?

Witchcraft pretenders and potheads allowed being jurors

If you don’t want a witchcraft practitioner, a pothead, or a former criminal as a juror at your trial, don’t get in trouble in Ontario.

Every province has its own jury qualification rules and Ontario will now allow individuals with minor summary criminal convictions to sit on juries. These summary convictions can be for crimes such as: practicing witchcraft; possessing less than 30 grams of marijuana; being nude in a public place; carrying a weapon to a public meeting; or throwing a stink bomb into a crowd.

Anywhere else in Canada, if you have a criminal Code conviction, you pretty much are barred from being a juror. For instance in Newfoundland, you’re out if the crime you committed comes with a fine of more than $2,000 or at least 12 months in jail.

Being eligible to be a juror isn’t the same as actually siting on the jury. Defence lawyers and Crown prosecutors can screen out undesirable candidates.

You know what else is a summary conviction? Disclosing a jury’s secret deliberations. Technically, you can do this, get convicted, and still be eligible to sit on another jury.

We say WOWZA!

Sudbury gets a Nuisance Bear Committee

When you can barely go a day without sighting a bear, you must put a bear committee together.

The city of Sudbury, Ont., has set up a “nuisance bear committee” to figure out what to do with the invasion of black bears who visit the city unannounced. 

In a matter of a few months, the city has received 2,200 reports of bear sightings and 1,700 bear complaints. The city had to kill eight bears in response to safety concerns and the whole ordeal has taken up 225 hours of police time.

The 10-member committee will be made up of police, environmentalists, ministry of natural resources representatives, and one man with a PhD in bear history.

Why are the bears coming to the city? They want food, so much so they even attacked a blueberry crop.

We hope the bear committee can bring the un-bear-able situation under control, until then no one plant blueberries folks!

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