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It’s made of plastic and fits in the hand of a G.I. Joe action figur

January 8, 1997

SEATTLE (AP) _ It’s made of plastic and fits in the hand of a G.I. Joe action figure, but the little toy gun that 10-year-old Jeffrey Parks got for Christmas got him kicked out of school.

Jeffrey took the gun to John Rodgers Elementary School and pulled it out with some classmates around, KIRO-TV reported Tuesday.

Students complained and the principal expelled the boy under the Seattle School District’s strict no-tolerance policy on guns of any kind.

Sid Parks told the station that he couldn’t believe it when the school called him to come pick up his son.

``In no way is this piece of plastic harmful or dangerous,″ Parks said. ``I don’t even think another child could think this could be dangerous.″

But school district spokeswoman Dorothy Dubia defended the expulsion, noting the district’s zero-tolerance policy on guns _ real or toys, large or tiny _ to make sure students feel safe.

``I understand policies, but somebody has to be intelligent enough to look at a one-inch toy and realize that does not break policy,″ Parks said.

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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) _ A 9-year-old boy learned the hard way that Dalmatians _ the spotted box-office sensations _ come with a sharp set of teeth.

Justin Page and his cousin were playing outside with a Dalmatian named Spot during a holiday visit to relatives.

``My cousin was hitting him on the back while I was petting him,″ Justin said. ``Then he just bit me.″

Justin ran into the house, where his mother and father were stunned to see he was missing about half of his ear.

The piece of ear was found on the sidewalk where the boys had been playing. The family took Justin and the piece of ear to the hospital.

A plastic surgeon reattached the ear during a four-hour operation.

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WADESBORO, N.C. (AP) _ It wasn’t over until the last chocolate chip was counted.

Students at Wadesboro Central Elementary School felt cheated when they found just 680 chocolate chips in a bag of Chips Ahoy! So they fired off a letter to Nabisco, questioning the company’s claim of 1,000 chips per bag.

Eager to prove its case, New Jersey-based Nabisco dispatched cookie technician Jessica Aronofsky to the school on Tuesday to see just how the cookies crumbled.

She showed the 130 third-graders how to count the chips by putting a bag of cookies in a colander and running cold water over them. Within eight to 10 minutes, the cookie dough washed away, leaving behind nothing but the chocolate chips.

``The count is over. The challenge is over,″ Nabisco spokeswoman Ann Smith. ``There were 1,181 chips in the bag that the kids counted today.″

Smith said the children erred by trying to count the chocolate chips from the outside of the cookies.

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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) _ Getting bitten in the face by a Rottweiler was bad enough for state Sen. Mario Diaz-Balart. The jokes, though, have been the worst part of the ordeal.

``Obviously the dog didn’t like Cuban food. One bite and that’s all it wanted,″ the Cuban-American legislator said. ``I’ve heard them all.″

One legislator visited him after the pre-Christmas dog bite to drop off a box of milk bones. Diaz-Balart, a Miami Republican, put his own face on the box.

The dog belongs to a friend that he declined to identify. He said they are still friends. In fact, he’s still friends with Mack the Rottweiler, although he’s being much more careful now.

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