A sad and infuriating lead sentence from the LA Times: "A 75-year-old woman who tried to sell a paperweight containing a speck of moon rock may try to hold a federal agent liable for detaining her for two hours in a public parking lot in urine-soaked pants, a federal appeals court decided unanimously Thursday." The good news is that she is going to sue NASA for the humiliating treatment.
She decided to try to sell the paperweights and contacted auction houses without success. She finally emailed NASA for help in finding a buyer for what she called "rare Apollo 11 space artifacts." She explained how her late husband had received them.
Norman Conley, a special agent and criminal investigator for NASA's Office of Inspector General, was assigned to investigate whether Davis really possessed a moon rock.
He had someone pose as a broker and call Davis. During several conversations, all but one recorded, Davis explained how she obtained the moon rock and insisted she wanted to do everything legally. She also mentioned that she hoped to sell her late husband's firearms.
At no point was she informed that all lunar material is the property of the federal government and that possession was a crime, the court said.
If the account in this appeal is accurate, the special agent Norman Conley is a jerk.