The Northeast’s frustration with a lack of spring-like temperatures has turned attention towards the groundhog Punxsutawney Phil and his terrible forecasting.
As many gleefully remember back in early February, Phil did not see his shadow, which supposedly meant we were in for an early spring. With March 20th come and gone – and weeks of 30 degree temperatures still in the forecast, one Ohio prosecutor has officially “indicted” Phil for what he deems a “misrepresentation of spring.”
The tongue-in-cheek, official document by Butler County Prosecutor Mike Gmoser reads:
On or about February 02,2013, at Gobbler’s Knob,Punxsutawney Phil did purposely,and with prior calculation and design, cause the people to believe that Spring would come
Contrary to the Groundhogday report, asnowstorm and record low temperatures have been and are predicted to continue in the near future, which constitutes the offense of MISREPRESENTATION OF EARLY SPRING, a Unclassified Felony, and against the peace and dignity of the State Of Ohio.
Gmoser’s recommendation for punishment? The death penalty.
In defense of the accusations, Phil’s long-time handler John Griffiths told USAToday that the groundhog is not at fault. “Maybe there’s just a dark cloud over Ohio,” he said.
Gmoser’s complaint comes days after the satirical newspaper The Onion published a piece titled “Punxsutawney Phil Beheaded For Inaccurate Prediction On Annual Groundhog Slaughtering Day.”
“Let this gesture stand as a stark reminder to all future groundhogs who seek to presage winter’s end without evidence or merit,” the article quipped.
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