Once in a while comes a story with an extremely tenuous sports angle, but it manages to be so mind-blowingly, batsh*t insane that we can’t resist posting it. This is one of those stories.
An Ohio woman is going to jail after over-exercising her 73-year-old husband in a swimming pool, despite his attempts to start, to the point where he had a heart attack. Did we mention there’s a sex change involved in this story too? Oh, you know you’re clicking through on this one.
Surveillance video showed Christine Newton-John, 41, pulling James Mason around the pool by his arms and legs, said Middlefield police Chief Joseph Stehlik.
The chief said he counted 43 times in which Newton-John prevented her husband from leaving the water, and Mason rested his head on the side of the pool several times while gasping for breath.
“The video is bone-chilling,” Stehlik said. “The whole case is very sinister.”
Unsurprisingly, there had been previous allegations that Mason was being abused. That’s why Stehlik pursued the investigation and uncovered the surveillance tape. But he said it wouldn’t have been enough to prosecute for murder, so Newton-John pleaded guilty to negligent homicide and faces up to five years in jail.
Here’s the ultimate kicker to the story, and heck, it’d be the ultimate kicker to any story.
Mason was a longtime friend of his wife’s family. He knew her as John Vallandingham before she had gender reassignment surgery in 1993 and changed her name in honor of the singer and star of the hit movie version of the musical “Grease.”
The couple were wed in 2006 in Kentucky, where people can change their gender on their birth certificate.