Zombie costumes banned after brutal assault

Bangor, Maine - Thu, 3 Jan 2008

Donny Jenks was acquitted late yesterday of all charges stemming from a brutal assault that occurred in late October last year. On October 29th, the twenty-two year old Jenks buried a small hand ax three inches deep in the skull of sixteen year old neighbor Tommy Crackles. Crackles was attempting to scare Jenks by dressing up as a ravenous zombie, but the prank proved nearly fatal. The two were friends and had spent the previous week watching all their favorite horror movies, including George Romero's Dawn of the Dead. Despite the proximity to Halloween, Jenks believed he was facing a real zombie and struck Crackles in the head with the ax. The ax was hanging on the wall just inside the door and was a souvenir from a local Native American festival.

Jenks was ordered to undergo a thorough examination to determine his mental fitness, and was deemed to be fully competent to stand trial. Despite the brutality of the assault, the laughable costume worn by the victim, and the permanent brain damage suffered by the head wound, the jury concluded that Jenks genuinely feared for his life and was therefore justified in attacking the undead intruder. In fact, the key defense strategy was to show that Jenks was an idiot. Witnesses testified to habitual glue-sniffing, the seven consecutive years he spent in the seventh grade, and a handful of incidents involving Jenks that only someone with extremely low intelligence would be capable of perpetrating.

Several people present during the final day of the trial said the judge presiding over the case was extremely agitated and after the verdict chided the jury on their decision. Claiming that he had no choice but to "protect the people from themselves", he immediately issued an emergency measure banning all costumes bearing any likeness to zombies.