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Odds & Ends 12/19

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University police accept toys for ticket payments
CLEVLAND, Miss. — Delta State University’s police department is turning parking fines into toys for needy children.
    The Toys for Tickets program is in its 12th year, and allows students to purchase toys for children in the Cleveland area rather than paying fines for parking tickets.
    ‘‘Towards the end of the fall semester, people have fines and tickets,’’ said Delta State Police Chief Lynn Buford. ‘‘If people are willing to be charitable this time of year, then we are willing to work with them.’’
    Buford said students and faculty are allowed to purchase toys valued at half the price of the fine, if the amount owed is less than $100.
    ‘‘This year, since we had so many fines that were over $100, we ask them to purchase half in toys and pay the remaining balance,’’ he said.
    The department collected two truck loads of gifts and are working on a third load. As for an exact number of gifts collected, the department doesn’t keep track.
    ‘‘A lot of times when the kids know that this is going on, they get into it,’’ said Buford. ‘‘They get as excited as we do receiving them. It really is a good and positive thing for the university.’’

Car with only three wheels attempts to drive to auto-parts store
    BECKLEY, W.Va. — One Oldsmobile here obviously needed some work, especially on the fourth tire.
    But that didn’t stop a 30-year-old man from driving the older model car on three tires and a rim to the local auto parts store Wednesday night.
    He didn’t make it far.
    Beckley Police Detective Sgts. Dean Bailey and Gant Montgomery said the car was speeding and ‘‘all over the road.’’
    Police also noticed that the car’s front fender was off and debris was falling from the car. As the officers caught up with the Oldsmobile, it swerved sideways.
    The car finally stopped behind an auto parts store.
    Police arrested the driver and charged him with driving under the influence after he failed field sobriety tests. Bailey said the man told him he was en route to buy parts for his car and thought he could make it.
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