Anti-droopy pants bill fails in Senate

BATON ROUGE, La. &

A state Senate panel rejected a bill Tuesday that would make it a crime to wear one's pants too low, even as Cajun-country towns around Louisiana have been banning saggy pants from their streets.

Sen. Derrick Shepherd's bill would have made it illegal to wear, in public, clothing that "intentionally exposes undergarments or intentionally exposes any portion of the pubic hair, cleft of the buttocks or genitals." Violators would have faced a fine of up to $175 and eight days of community service.

Exceptions included thong swim suits and clothing worn in fashion shows.

Sen. Yvonne Dorsey said she disliked the look of baggy pants but wanted to defend the public's right to wear their clothes as they wish.

"When we begin to take the freedom of speech away ... I think we're doing something that's just not right," said Dorsey, a Democrat.

Shepherd said the state should take a stand against droopy pants, which he called just one example of widespread indecency in contemporary clothing styles.

"The shorts are getting shorter, the tops are getting smaller, the cleavage is getting larger," said Shepherd, also a Democrat. "When are we going to say, 'Enough is enough'?"

With no objection, the Senate judiciary panel voted against moving the measure to the floor.

Shepherd tried and failed to pass a similar bill in 2004, but the measure died in the face of opposition from the American Civil Liberties Union.

About a dozen Louisiana towns and cities have enacted or are considering bans on saggy pants.

Woman finds 8-foot alligator in kitchen

OLDSMAR, Fla. &

And some people get jittery about mice in the kitchen.

Authorities say 69-year-old central Florida woman found an 8-foot long alligator prowling in her kitchen late Monday night.

Sandra Frosti says the gator must have pushed through the back porch screen door and then went inside through an open sliding glass door at her home in Oldsmar, just north of Tampa. It then apparently strolled through the living room, down a hall and into the kitchen.

A trapper with Animal Capture of Florida removed the alligator, which was cut by a plate that was knocked to the ground during the chaos. But no one inside the house was injured.

Disney workers recover rings mistakenly thrown away

ORLANDO, Fla. &

Walt Disney World seems to have worked its magic on a Massachusetts couple who accidentally threw away three platinum and diamond wedding rings.

While tidying up their villa as they prepared to leave the park late last week, Paul Campanale dumped a cardboard bowl, not knowing the container inside it held his wife Karen's engagement, wedding and five-year-anniversary rings.

Park employees warned the couple from Worcester, Mass., that recovering the jewelry was all but impossible. So on Friday, the Campanales and their two children loaded onto a Magical Express bus and headed to the airport.

Back at the Wilderness Lodge resort, executive housekeeper Drew Weaver realized that trash from the Campanales' villa hadn't reached the industrial-size compactor yet. He and seven other volunteers donned protective clothing, emptied a parking lot bin and waded through bag after bag of rubbish to find the rings. And they did.

Paul Campanale, 37, a chemist, received the good news on his cell phone and Weaver met the family to deliver the rings. Karen Campanale, 35, a teacher, said she was shocked by the find.

"That's not the first time we've gone through trash &

oh, no," Weaver said. "We don't always find things. Many times we come up empty. But we didn't this time."

-- The Associated Press