Florida man dies after winning cockroach-eating contest

Edward Archbold was, according to those who met him on Friday night, the life of the party – a bit of a showoff who was up for anything, even a giant cockroach-eating contest.

He won. And then, tragically, he died.

Now police from Deerfield Beach, Fla., about 40 miles north of Miami, are investigating the death of the 32-year-old, who on Facebook went by Edward William Barry.

According to the Broward Sheriff’s Office, Archbold, of West Palm Beach, and several other contestants signed up to eat a variety of insects at Ben Siegel Reptiles in Deerfield Beach. After eating dozens of giant cockroaches, Archbold was declared the winner of an ivory-ball python. (The prizes, Archbold indicated on his Facebook page that night, were less significant than the glory.)

He had also entered a superworm-eating contest earlier in the night.

But after winning, Archbold felt sick and started vomiting. He then collapsed in the store and was later pronounced dead. The medical examiner’s office is conducting tests to determine a cause of death, according to the sheriff’s office statement.

On Facebook, Ben Siegel Reptiles wrote that staff met Archbold the night of the Midnight Madness sale: “We all liked him right away. All of us here at Ben Siegel Reptiles are sad that we will not get to know Eddie better, for in the short time we knew him, he was very well liked by all.”

In the comments beneath the statement, the reptile store wrote that the prize “now belongs to his estate.”

In another Facebook comment, an attorney claiming to represent Ben Siegel Reptiles wrote that contest participants had signed waivers accepting their participation in this “unique and unorthodox contest.”

“The consumption of insects is widely accepted throughout the world, and the insects presented as part of the contest were taken from an inventory of insects that are safely and domestically raised in a controlled environment as food for reptiles,” wrote attorney Luke Lirot.

No other contestants felt sick, the Broward Sheriff’s Office said.

And Archbold seemed to be doing all right earlier in the night, according to his own account on Facebook. He took photos of the superworms and wrote: ” Also side note im NOW in a super worm eating comp now…….what ever the hell a super worm is?”

Eating the bugs yielded valuable rewards, according to the store’s Facebook page: “Eat the most bugs in 4 minutes, win the ball morph. That’s it. Oh yeah, any vomiting is an automatic DQ,” the advertisement stated. “Eat the most crickets, win a male lesser. Eat the most superworms, win a female orange belly. Eat the most discoid roaches, win a female graphite sired ivory!”

Michael Adams, a professor of entomology at the University of California, Riverside, told The Associated Press that he has never heard of someone dying after eating roaches.

“Unless the roaches were contaminated with some bacteria or other pathogens, I don’t think that cockroaches would be unsafe to eat,” Adams said. “Some people do have allergies to roaches but there are no toxins in roaches or related insects.”

Meanwhile, Archbold’s friends took to his Facebook page to remember him. Wrote one: “This goes out to one of the most funnest, craziest, and most energetic person I have ever met!!! I will never ever forget u Eddie… I don’t think anyone could!!”


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Man falls on his knife three times

GRAND RAPIDS, MI — A 37-year-old man was hospitalized in Grand Rapids on Sunday after suffering several stab wounds he claimed resulted from falling on a knife, police said.

According to medical dispatch traffic around 8:30 p.m. Sunday, the man suffered three stab wounds to his neck and back.

The placement of the wounds suggested to medical personnel they were not self-inflicted, according to dispatch reports.

Grand Rapids police Lt. Matt Ostapowicz said an officer was sent to Spectrum Health Butterworth Hospital to interview the man.

“He claimed he fell on a knife he was working with. But he’s also being uncooperative,” Ostapowicz said. “We don’t necessarily believe his story right now.”


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Mom left kids inside truck while at strip club


A mother is facing child neglect charges after allegedly leaving her two children, ages 3 and 5, inside a car Tuesday night while she went into a popular Tampa strip club.

Had it not been for the Mons Venus managers and a regular customer, Tampa Police said it could have been much worse for Brandi Jo Roman, 28, and her two children.

Mons Venus’ manager Jean Burns said Roman tried to get into the club a first time, but she didn’t have any money and went back to her car. She said Roman wound up slumped over the wheel.

A short time later “she came back in the club, she had gathered up quarters and dollars to pay the cover charge, and [the staff] took her in to get her in there so she didn’t leave with the children.”

A customer, identified as “John,” watched the incident unfold and realized Roman’s condition was not good. He ran across a busy Dale Mabry Highway and flagged down two Tampa police officers in the area.

When they made it to the club, Roman was still inside. Burns said “door was unlocked, open container of alcohol, truck was running. [The] kids could have got out, ran along Dale Mabry or threw the truck into gear — drank the alcohol.”

When the officers approached the vehicle, they found the children unattended and the 3-year-old was crying. Officers said a can of malt liquor was in plain view inside the truck.

Mons Venus owner Joe Redner applauded his staff and customer’s actions.  “My manager didn’t want her driving away with those children in the shape she was in,” Redner told Bay News 9. “She was drunk.”

“I am a mother,” the manager said.  “I wanted her to stay there.  I didn’t want her leaving, driving.”

The officers went inside the club and found Roman sitting near a stage. They said her speech was slurred and she showed other visible signs of intoxication.

According to police, Roman told the officers that she went inside the club to drink more alcohol and left the children watching a movie inside the car.

Looking back at it, Burns just hopes the children aren’t traumatized by the situation. “I hope as young as they are, they don’t remember that,” she said. The children are now in the custody of the state.

Roman is being held on $2,000 bond.


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Overdose horror at city McDonald’s


A BEDRAGGLED drug user was left to overdose in front of children for 20 minutes at an Elizabeth St McDonald’s today, despite outraged parents pleading with staff to call emergency services.

The 26 year-old St Kilda man entered the family restaurant near the Queen Victoria Market at about 3.30pm today and began injecting with a needle near shocked patrons.

Andrew Kahn, of Adelaide, had travelled to Melbourne for a weekend away with his wife and children and had just visited the Vic Market when he saw the drug user – with his pants slipping down – in the corner of the McDonald’s.

”He came in and started shooting up, right near a family with kids,” Mr Kahn said.

”I told a staff member it was happening and she said sorry, the manager isn’t in at the moment.

”The guy was still there and started nodding off in the corner.”

Diners were further outraged when the restaurant closed its upstairs dining area during the ordeal meaning families had to sit near the drug user in the crowded ground section.

Mr Kahn said authorities were called when he approached staff a second time.

A police spokeswoman said ambulance officers treated the man when he became aggressive and was handcuffed by police.

He was taken to the Royal Melbourne Hospital.

Mr Kahn captured a photo of the man on his phone showing him in a delirous state crouched near the front window of the restaurant.

McDonald’s spokeswoman Laura Keith said: ”As soon as the manager became aware of the man he asked him to leave.

”The man refused and the police were called right away. The manager spoke to police twice on the phone before they arrived, arrested and removed the man from the restaurant. The dining area was then cleaned thoroughly.”


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Strip clubs set to recruit high school students


TORONTO — Recruiters of teenage strippers may soon be scouring Toronto high schools in search of female students who can be groomed into disrobing part-time as exotic dancers to earn college tuition.

A flyer praising the benefits of the burlesque trade has been produced to target students in high schools, colleges and universities in the Toronto area, says a group representing dancers and club owners.

The brochure claims working as a dancer pays well, offers flexible hours and makes a “great part-time job to raise college tuition.”

A scramble is underway by the Adult Entertainment Association of Canada to fill a demand for dancers after the federal government this month stopped issuing visas or extensions for foreign strippers to work here.

There are up to 800 foreign strippers in Canada and most vow to go underground and work in the sex trade if they can’t dance legally.

The foreign dancers, many of whom are from Eastern Europe and South America, represent about 5% of the 38,000 strippers working in clubs across Canada. Most of them dance in Toronto, Windsor, Ont., London, Ont., Montreal, Ottawa, Winnipeg and Calgary.

Caroline, 28, and Nicola, 25, have been dancing in a downtown Toronto club for more than a year and have tasted the good life, and now don’t want to return to their native Hungary.

“We are not happy that visas are no longer being issued to us,” Caroline said. “I am very disappointed and afraid of what may happen to me in the future.”

The women say they work long hours and send most of their earnings back home to their families.

“We did not do anything wrong in Canada,” she said. “They should not be sending us back home.”
Nicola said she’s stressed out and hasn’t been able to eat since hearing news of the visa revocation.

“My visa is almost expired and I am very scared,” she said. “I am very shattered that I may no longer be able to work and help my family back home.”

The association said the visa ban that began July 14 means more Canadian women have to be hired to meet the demand. The new rules will prevent strip clubs, escort services and massage parlours from having access to foreign women.

“They’re destroying the industry by creating a labour shortage,” association director Tim Lambrinos said.

“The word ‘exotic’ means foreign and that’s what people want to see.”

The association has created a “six-point action plan” to help keep the dancers in Canada. That includes more recruitment of women in high schools and colleges, lobbying the government for changes and if all else fails, the strippers plan to file refugee claims or marry Canadian citizens to sponsor them.

Lambrinos said girls 18 and older can work as dancers in Ontario, according to advice from their lawyers.

He said recruiters from strip clubs will try to attract students by attending job fairs at high schools, colleges and universities in Toronto and surrounding areas.

“We are already doing some outreach work in some areas,” Lambrinos said. “We will be taking a strippers’ dance pole with us to the schools.”
He said overcrowded Toronto high schools can become a prime recruiting ground for potential dancers.

QMI Agency has obtained a draft copy of the flyer to be circulated to high school students. It advises them that they can earn tuition fees while working as an “exotic dance entertainer” and that no sex with customers is permitted.

“If you are visually appealing and comfortable with your naked body and are comfortable about taking all your clothes off,” the flyer states. “You can be working right now as an exotic dancer and earn your tuition fees for university or college.”

Students are told they must be “comfortable … onstage at a club and disrobing,” and are guaranteed that “no actual sex or sex acts (will) occur.”

It warns them that they will have to provide private dances, or table dances, in dark lounge areas and part-time, full-time or seasonal jobs are available.

Officials of the Toronto District School Board did not return phone calls or e-mails about the proposal despite repeated attempts by QMI Agency. Several high school students said they did not like the idea of strippers being recruited from among their peers.

Foreign dancers said they’re willing to get married to a Canadian citizen or file refugee claims to stay here.

Plans are in place to seek Canadian men to marry some of the strippers whose visas are about to expiry, which could force them to go underground and into the hands of organized crime to work in the sex trade.

Lambrinos said photographs and descriptions of some the dancers will be posted on the Internet and newspaper ads with text seeking Canadian husbands. Potential hubbies will have to be citizens and not have a criminal record.

“This is very urgent for some of the dancers whose visas are nearing expiry,” Lambrinos said. “Every potential sponsor will be looked at and the girls will make a decision on who they want to marry.”

There will be a phone number and e-mails for the potential husbands to contact their potential brides.

Officials of the Canada Border Services Agency said the scheme can be considered a marriage of convenience, since there is no history of courtship between the couple. If approved, the sponsor will be responsible for his wife for about 10 years in Canada.

“We’re trying to do all we can to keep the dancers here,” Lambrinos said. “The girls themselves have said they are not going back home.”
He said another plan will have the strippers file claims for refugee status and there is no guarantee that they will be accepted.
Immigration officials said filing a claim will allow the women to remain here for more than a year as they challenge the case, but eventuality they will have to leave.
The controversial “stripper visa” dates back to 1998 and allowed hundreds of foreign dancers into the country each year. In 2001, for example, 660 foreign dancers, mostly from eastern Europe, were admitted.
All they had to do was provide a Canadian job offer from a strip club and prove they were qualified to “dance.”
Roughly 100 of the visas have been renewed each year since 2006.
Support for the program has plummeted ever since MP Judy Sgro, a former Liberal immigration minister, resigned in 2000 after facing accusations that she fast-tracked a stripper who worked on her campaign — a scandal dubbed “Strippergate.”


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Mother gives her teenage daughter permission to be a prostitute

A FORMER brothel madam has given her 16-year-old daughter the all-clear to go out to work — as a PROSTITUTE.

Becky Adams, 45, has guided scores of call girls during 20 years in the world’s oldest profession.

The mum of two has now quit, but insists she would be happy if Emilia chose to be a “high class escort” — and says she would even help to get the teenager started.

Becky told The Sun: “Society may judge her but I wouldn’t. At least prostitution is an honest profession.

“I’d much rather she work as an escort than a banker.

“I couldn’t understand her wanting to do something morally wrong, something that could jeopardise someone else.”


Becky Adams

Fair game … Becky in her boudoir


Teenager Emilia, who is currently working in a shop and at a car showroom while studying travel and tourism, agrees with her mum.

She said: “I don’t have a moral problem with having sex with strangers. I don’t think it’s wrong for women to sell their bodies.

“I’m not promiscuous but sex isn’t a massive thing for me.

“I certainly don’t regret losing my virginity at 14.”

Convent-educated Becky told how she drifted into her line of work after rebelling against her strict upbringing in Wales.

She says: “Mum was brought up in a very strict Welsh working class background and ruled the house with a rod of iron.

“She never cuddled me or told me she loved me. She was quite emotionally cold.”

Growing up in such a strict environment gave Becky a strong urge to rebel. And those feelings intensified when she was 17 and met Gary — a petty criminal with a shaven head, fresh out of a Young Offenders’ institution. He was everything her mum hated.

Despite her mother’s pleas for her to ditch him and go to university, Becky was hooked.


Becky Adams and daughter Emilia

Green light … mum Becky has told Emilia that prostitution is honest

She and Gary had an on-off relationship for ten years, and in 1989 their daughter Abigail, now 23, was born. But the relationship remained volatile and Becky eventually left for a women’s refuge, taking little Abi with her.

Penniless, Becky had to think of some way to earn a living. So she set up Scrubbers, a topless carwashing business in Milton Keynes, Bucks, where she still lives.

She recalled: “It was hilarious. We were in stockings and suspenders running round topless. The council went mad.”

Later, she acted as the driver for a hard-up friend who began working for an escort agency. Word spread and Becky ended up looking after a group of girls.

She said: “Some would earn £1,000 a week. I had a go at prostitution myself but I wasn’t any good at it.

“I hated a stranger being in my personal space.”


Becky Adams

Putting the boot in … former madam Becky

She thrived as a madam, though, opening two brothels while bringing up Abigail and Emilia, born in 1995 to another boyfriend.

Emilia spent much of her childhood surrounded by call girls and exploring brothels after hours.

Becky explained: “Me and the kids never lived in the brothels. I kept that side separate from family.

“But, inevitably, the working girls became good friends. They were always popping round for a cup of tea. Emilia loved them but she’d never know their real names.”

Emilia added: “One of mum’s girls in particular became more like an aunt to me.

“I loved being surrounded by these nice, glamorous women. It was a happy family.”

Becky is glad that her youngest daughter grew up surrounded by her girls and the tools of the trade, claiming that it has made her more open-minded and relaxed about sex.

She said: “I think my work showed Emilia that the reality of prostitution is just very ordinary. The girls have their shifts and they go to work.

“They can have a bad day or a quiet day, just like anybody else.”

She added: “I made sure all the girls were safe. There were no drugs or alcohol, just local ladies working to provide for their kids.”

Becky now works for a Lottery-funded charity helping students who have gone on the game to pay their way through university.

Emilia admits her mum’s work did cause her problems at school.

She said: “Even when kids bullied me over Mum’s job, I told myself, ‘Well, I’ll still have things you’ll never be able to afford’.

“I had horses, nice clothes — it made up for not seeing Mum much, or going to the shops to buy 300 condoms at 12.”


Becky Adams and daughter Emilia

‘Prostitution is a service’ … Becky and Emilia, 16

Becky said: “Prostitution is a service. It’s like care work. Clients might be disabled or widowed, it’s about making them feel special.

“Emilia has seen all that. She’s seen how it can save marriages — how a man whose wife is fighting cancer will visit a prostitute rather than start an affair. She’s not shocked by anything as a result.”

But she doubts whether Emilia will indeed end up as a hooker, saying her daughter would be more suited to becoming a madam.

Becky said: “She’d be brilliant at my job. She’d make a lousy prostitute though — she couldn’t put up with the hard graft.

“To be a good prostitute, you need the constitution of a landscape gardener. The girls see five or six clients a day. For that hour-long appointment you need to be on top of your game.

“The sex may only last ten minutes but for the rest of the session — the conversation, the bathing, the massage — you need to make your client feel like they’re the only person in the world.

“It’s like giving five or six gruelling business presentations in one day. I don’t think Emilia could put up with that.”

Emilia admitted: “After what I’ve seen, the environment doesn’t scare me. But I think I’d get hooked on the money.

“I love material things. I worry that I’d become addicted.”

Becky added: “Obviously I wouldn’t want Emilia to be a hooker on a street corner.

“But I’d have no objections at all if, when she reaches 18, she decided to become a high class escort.


Becky Adams

‘I could manage her money’ … but Becky doesn’t think her daughter would be good

“I could even manage her money and taxes.

“What I always remember is that every girl who worked for me was someone’s daughter.

“It would be hugely hypocritical for me to say, ‘It’s good enough for their daughters, but not for mine’. ”

“All young people need looking after. I want prostitutes — whether it be my daughter, or yours — to be safe and do it properly.”


By MARK WAKELING of Beyond The Streets charity

A LIFE of prostitution is inherently harmful – as I know all too well in my role as director of Beyond The Streets, a UK charity working to end sexual exploitation.

Any attempt to promote or glamourise it ignores the extreme harm it does to the individuals in the profession, as well as to their families.

The sale of sex will always lead to the exploitation of the vulnerable and we cannot let prostitution be seen as a leisure activity.

For many caught up in prostitution, there is terrible exploitation and abuse. It should not be viewed as a desirable profession.

With the Olympics just days away, there is a focus on whether women are being trafficked here and the exploitation which may ensue.

There are also those who suggest many women choose prostitution and see the Games as a business opportunity.

There is uncertainty as to how many will be trafficked for the Games but we must remember that the events are temporary and what remains is a part of London where prostitution has destroyed lives for years. www.beyondthestreets.org.uk.


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crows blamed for ‘suspicious powder’ scare

EDMONDS, Wash. — A fire spokeswoman says blame the crows for a “suspicious powder” scare at Washington state intersection that detoured traffic for more than an hour.

Snohomish County Fire District 1 spokeswoman Leslie Hynes tells The Daily Herald (http://is.gd/Fs8yKM) that a hazardous materials team responded Tuesday to a report about an unknown white powder in the roadway in the town of Edmonds.

A witness finally told the crew that a couple of crows were to blame. Hynes says a woman was going jogging when she noticed the birds dragging a bag of white flour.

Hynes says the woman took the bag away from the birds, put it in a garbage can and kept running. It took firefighters about an hour to clear the scene.

Says Hynes: “Two crows and a two-alarm hazmat incident.”

“We take No Credit for this story. All Information from: The Daily Herald..