These were Mississippi's most bonkers news stories in 2017

As we reflect on the past year, it’s hard to forget some of the more outlandish things that happened in Mississippi—a state that contributes more than its fair share of bizarre and/or fascinating stories year after year.
In a news year marked by triumph and tragedy, we turned to Reddit and our own archives to help us compile a list of unusual Mississippi stories from 2017, many of which left us speechless, slack-jawed and sometimes laughing ourselves to tears.

A Biloxi school removed “To Kill a Mockingbird” from its junior high reading list, which ignited a national firestorm and eventually convinced school officials to reverse the decision.

http://magnoliastatelive.com/mississippi-school-district-pulls-kill-mockingbird-lesson-plan-due-uncomfortable-language
 

A “cougar spotting” in Hernando had North Mississippians on edge, and a live shot from a Memphis news station had the entire nation laughing.

http://magnoliastatelive.com/house-cat-hilariously-crashes-live-tv-spot-mississippi-cougar-sighting-report/
 

A Mississippi man en route to a “voodoo doctor” ended up in a police chase after crashing his car at a Louisiana airport. He was found without clothing and explained to police it was because snakes were crawling up his pants.

http://magnoliastatelive.com/mississippi-man-heading-voodoo-doctor-crashes-fence-strips-off-clothes-thinking-snakes-crawling-pants/

Louisiana Tech’s game against Mississippi State wasn’t expected to draw a national audience. That is, until the Louisiana-based Bulldogs managed to lose 87 yards on a single hilarious play.

https://twitter.com/tbradenbishop/status/906708860727152646

A few years back, The Clarion-Ledger’s Jerry Mitchell reported that around 2,000 bodies were buried beneath the University of Mississippi Medical Center.

That’s creepy enough, especially when you consider the bodies are mental patients buried beneath what was then the state’s first mental institution. This year, the creep factor escalated when the number of bodies hit around 7,000—covering 20 acres of UMMC’s campus.

A Mississippi woman whose religious beliefs include wearing only skirts or dresses sued a restaurant chain after they fired her for not following their dress code.

http://magnoliastatelive.com/mississippi-restaurant-chain-sued-not-letting-christian-employee-wear-skirt-instead-jeans/

Two Mississippi teachers were indicted after it was discovered they had been buying prescriptions from a 16-year-old student.

http://magnoliastatelive.com/mississippi-teachers-indicted-for-buying-adderall-lortab-from-16-year-old-student

Mississippi police officers resigned over a sex scandal that made it seem like they didn’t have much time for doing their actual, um, jobs.

http://magnoliastatelive.com/mississippi-police-officers-reportedly-resign-accused-of-having-sex-on-the-job/
What were your most memorable stories of the year? Tell us in the comments. 

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Mississippi volunteer firefighters save life of 2-year-old who nearly drowned in swimming pool

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One dead after car collides with freight truck on rural Mississippi highway

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Three arrested in Southern Miss football player’s murder

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One girl dead, another sent to hospital after Amber Alert issued for missing children. Mother found brutally slain.

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Former Mississippi Lottery official accused of embezzling nearly $200,000 from taxpayers enters guilty plea

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Mississippi woman arrested for cyberstalking after reports of fake calls, notes sent to victim’s house

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Mississippi woman, who didn’t know she was pregnant, gives birth to ‘Golden Corral’ child in restaurant

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Former Mississippi police officer sentenced to federal prison after pleading guilty to forcing arrestee lick urine from floor

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‘Hang on for the ride’ — Mississippi mayor touts $1.38 billion economic boost from new developments

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Two people injured in shooting at Mississippi Walmart

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Body found in trunk of car at Mississippi used car lot identified as missing woman last seen leaving 1 a.m. crash

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Mississippi man killed in crash on rural Mississippi highway

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13-year-old Mississippi boy arrested after mother’s boyfriend stabbed to death

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Disturbance at Mississippi apartments leads to double burglary arrests

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Trial begins for mother accused of 2023 manslaughter after child found dead in pond

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Officials: Bear spotted in wooded area near Mississippi businesses should be left alone

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Jerry Lee Lewis’ Mississippi ranch to open to public; fans can walk where the Killer walked

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Dead body found in trunk at used car lot, near area search for missing Mississippi woman had taken place

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Mississippi doctor on vacation with family helps save life of shark-bite victim

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Kia tells these SUV owners to ‘park outside’ due to fire risk as company recall hits nearly half million vehicles

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Mississippi teen shot to death, police say

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Mississippi bicyclist killed early Sunday after colliding with motor vehicle, police say