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Wednesday, May 28, 2014 at 2:20 pm

Prison sentence corrected for Alabama man accused of firing shots in direction of deputy

post by Howard B. Owens in Alabama, crime

Sentenced once, an Alabama man who was arrested in November after police believed he had fired a weapon during an apparent domestic incident, was back in court today to be sentenced again.

Judge Robert C. Noonan said neither he, the prosecution nor the defense picked up on the fact in February that the charge Reuben Lay admitted to was not a violent felony. Since it wasn't, Noonan could not impose a determinate (set time) sentence under NYS sentencing guidelines.

The 50-year-old Lay could have withdrawn his guilty plea to criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd, but that would have exposed him to a trial on the other charges he face and a conviction could have meant consecutive sentences on each count.

Lay, who entered the courtroom with two state prison guards and was dressed in khaki slacks and a crisp white shirt and sporting close-cropped hear and sunglasses, declined the chance to withdraw his plea and was sentenced to 22 months to 66 months in prison.

During the early morning incident on Bloomingdale Road, Lay reportedly fired shots in the direction of a deputy and trooper. The Emergency Response Team was activated, but never deployed. Since there were no hostages and Lay presented no immediate danger to others, the Sheriff's Office decided to wait until the morning to arrest Lay rather than engage in a late-night confrontation.

Lay was charged with with criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd, and reckless endangerment, 1st, both Class D felonies. He was also charged with misdemeanor counts of criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation and harassment, 2nd.

Friday, May 16, 2014 at 6:51 pm

One-car rollover on Feeder Road, driver says he's not injured

post by Billie Owens in accidents, Alabama

A one-car rollover accident is reported on Feeder Road, just west of Judge Road. The driver is claiming no injury although he did bump his head. The vehicle is being "restrained by trees from falling into the creek." Alabama Fire Department is responding along with Mercy medics. The location is in the Tonawanda State Wildlife Management Area.

UPDATE 8:51 p.m.: The Alabama assignment is back in service.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014 at 8:41 am

Law and Order: Woman accused of stabbing another person in the leg

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Alabama, crime

Jennifer L. Sprague-Clark, 31, of Vine Street, Batavia, is charged with assault, 2nd, menacing, 2nd and criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd. Sprague-Clark allegedly stabbed another person in the leg during a dispute at 9:20 p.m., Tuesday. The investigation was conducted by Officer James DeFreze. Sprague-Clark was jailed without bail

Zachari R. Morgan, 18, of Pearl Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal obstruction of breathing, endangering the welfare of a child and criminal mischief, 4th. Morgan was allegedly involved in a domestic incident at 11:38 a.m., Tuesday.

Mark S. Allison, 52, of Medina, is charged with assault/recklessly causing serious injury with a weapon. The alleged incident was reported at 11:44 a.m., Jan. 17 in the Town of Alabama. Allison was arrested by State Police. No further details released.

Peter J. Gravante, 25, of Churchville, is charged with petit larceny. Gravante was arrested by State Police for an alleged theft at a location on Veterans Memorial Drive that was reported at 9:04 a.m., Sunday.

Thursday, May 8, 2014 at 7:23 am

Law and Order: Batavia teenager accused of rape in the first degree

post by Howard B. Owens in Basom, batavia, Alabama, bergen, corfu, crime, Oakfield

Joseph A. Saraceni, 17, of Linwood Avenue, Batavia, is charged with first-degree rape, a Class B felony. Saraceni was arrested by Batavia PD following an investigation by Det. Charles Dudek and Det. Thad Mart in an alleged incident reported Nov. 11 on School Street, Batavia. No further details released.

Lance Mercado, 23, of Holland Avenue, Batavia, is charged with operating a motor vehicle impaired by drugs. Mercardo was arrested after Batavia PD received a reported of a possible intoxicated driver in the parking lot of McDonald's at 1:18 a.m., Tuesday. Mercardo was arrested by Officer Matthew Lutey.

Eric J. Davis, 36, of Corfu, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd. Davis was arrested by State Police for an alleged incident reported at 6:52 p.m. Tuesday on Drake Street, Oakfield. No further details released.

Timothy M. Gardiner, 38, and Maria A. Gardiner, 48, both of Scottsville, are charged with criminal possession of stolen property, 3rd. Timothy and Maria were arrested by State Police in connection with an alleged incident reported at 9:39 a.m. Feb. 16 in the Town of Bergen. No further details released.

Heidi H. Stumbo, 48, of Lima, is charged with petit larceny. Stumbo was arrested by the State Police on the Tonawanda Indian Reservation. The alleged theft was reported at 1:04 p.m., Monday. No further details released.

Thursday, April 24, 2014 at 1:10 pm

Car crashes into building at Leisure Timers Apartments, Basom

post by Billie Owens in Basom, accident, Alabama

A car has crashed into a building at Leisure Timers Apartments, 364 Bloomingdale Road. Injuries are reported. Alabama Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding. The location is between Shanks and Tesnow roads.

UPDATE 2:14 p.m.: A responder requests a code enforcement officer to the scene along with a digital camera. The vehicle has been removed from the building.

UPDATE 2:16 p.m.: Alabama command says responding units can continue non-emergency.

UPDATE 3:13 p.m.: The Alabama assignment is back in service. The driver was a sign-off.

Friday, April 18, 2014 at 10:59 am

Three-car wreck at routes 77 and 63, Alabama

post by Billie Owens in accidents, Alabama

A three-car accident with minor injuries is reported at routes 77 and 63. Alabama Fire Department and Mercy medics are responding.

Thursday, April 17, 2014 at 5:19 pm

Big law enforcement response to reservation for property dispute at Arrowhawk Smoke Shop

post by Howard B. Owens in Basom, Alabama, Tonawanda Indian Reservation

Dozens of law enforcement officers were on the Tonawanda Indian Reservation for about four hours this afternoon to help keep the peace while two factions of the same family tried to resolve an ownership dispute over Arrowhawk Smoke Shop.

Tom Peters (top photo), who said he's been managing the business recently for his family, said members of the Genesee County Sheriff's Office showed up this morning with a court order giving his niece, Corrine Thomas, control of the property.

The order was signed by Judge Robert C. Noonan, Peters said, but Peters said Noonan had no jurisdiction of the land of his nation.

This is reservation land and any court order from any judge is not valid out here," Peters said. "He has no right to be here. He doesn't have jurisdiction here."

There's a bit of a contradiction over how the dispute was resolved for the time being today. Peters said a higher court issued a stay of Noonan's order, but Chief Deputy Gordon Dibble said he was unaware of any such order. He said the Tonawanda chiefs brokered a deal to take control of the property until the issue can be resolved.

There were about 10 members of the Sheriff's Office on scene and more than two dozen troopers, including at least two K-9 units, which arrived to provide back up.

Asked if this was a typical response, Dibble said, "Is this typical? This isn't a typical situation. I've never seen a situation like this in my 38 years, so I wouldn't call it typical. I don't know that there is such a thing as a typical police response. We respond and do what we have to do for the safety of the people, and I think we were successful. Nobody got hurt."

Dibble and about 10 members of the Sheriff's Office delivered the court order from Noonan this morning about 7:30. According to Dibble, the order gave Thomas the right to inventory the property and its contents.

Peters said he was evicted from his apartment above the restaurant on the property. 

The dispute is about three years old, Peters said, going back to the death of his brother. His brother left a will and Peters said there are provisions in the law that contradict tribal law. He said it gave away property that belongs to the Tonawanda nation.

It's unclear at what point Thomas became the estate's executor, but it was apparently because she has been named executor that she was there this morning.

Once the order was delivered, the Sheriff's personnel left the reservation, then early this afternoon there was a small fire at the location and Dibble said there were "threats made."

That brought deputies back to the scene and a host of troopers to provide back-up.

Dozens of residents of the nation mingled in the surrounding area, along with some customers of the nearby smoke shops and gas stations, and watched as a group of chiefs and others sat on chairs and talked outside the Arrowhawk.

At around 4 p.m., Thomas and her supporters -- Peters called them "warriors" and "mercenaries" hired by Thomas -- left.

Dibble and Peters may not agree how the settlement came about, but they both agree the matter is now in the hands of the chiefs. Peters said he believes federal courts will overturn Noonan's order.  In the meantime, it's unclear if the Arrowhawk will reopen before the dispute is resolved.

Dibble said the chiefs will post guards on the property.

Thursday, April 10, 2014 at 4:16 pm

Field fire moving toward house on Bloomingdale Road

post by Billie Owens in Alabama, fire

A field fire is reported at 935 Bloomingdale Road on the Tonawanda Indian Reservation. The caller to dispatch says it's moving toward her house. The location is between Parker and Martin roads. Alabama Fire Department is responding along a tanker from Akron, mutual aid.

UPDATE 5:39 p.m.: Fire is out. Responders are back in service.

Friday, March 28, 2014 at 4:30 pm

Law and Order: Woman accused of trying to shoplift from Dollar General

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Alabama, crime

Zoe A. McClure, 44, of Bank Street, Batavia, is charged with attempted petit larceny. McClure was allegedly observed by management at the Dollar General Store trying to conceal several items in her purse, coat and pants.

Sharon E. Herdtner, 51, of Jackson Street, Batavia, was arrested on a bench warrant for alleged failure to appear. She was jailed on $1,000 bail.

Brian D. Fisher, 60, of Washington Avenue, Batavia, was arrested for allegedly failing to answer to a parking ticket (2 a.m. to 6 a.m. on a city street). Fisher was located during an investigation into an unrelated matter and was arrested. He posted $70 cash bail.

Kenneth H. Holley, 24, of River Road, Caledonia, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Holley was arrested by Officer Stephen Cronmiller following a traffic stop by Deputy Joseph Corona on East Main Street, Batavia, at 12:13 a.m. March 23.

Dawn L. Sedita, 50, of Buffalo, is charged with petit larceny. Sedita was arrested by State Police for allegedly stealing cartons of cigarettes from Jan's Smoke Shop.

Wednesday, March 26, 2014 at 11:26 am

Nominations sought for O-A Alumni Hall of Fame, deadline is April 30

post by Billie Owens in Alabama, hall of fame, OACS, Oakfield

Press release:

Nominations are currently being accepted for this year's induction class of the Oakfield-Alabama Alumni Hall of Fame. It recognizes outstanding OACS alumni who have achieved distinction in their lives and chosen field after high school through significant contributions to their career, community or through personal achievements.

If you know a person who meets the following criteria, please consider nominating him/her for this prestigious honor:

  • Nominees must be graduates of OACS or one of its predecessors, or have been active in school classes and activities during their senior year; (Nominees who left school while in good standing to perform military service are also eligible. Deceased alumni are not eligible for induction until the 5th anniversary of the year of their death.)
  • Nominees must have graduated prior to 1999;
  • Selection is based on achievement after leaving OACS, which includes a worthy record in more than one, and exemplary achievement in at least one of the following: job-related achievements; professional honors and awards, professional affiliations, or publications; civic or community involvement; personal achievements/accomplishments; positive impact on the communities in the Oakfield-Alabama school district.

Anyone may submit a nomination for any person meeting the criteria stated above. Nominations must be made during the nomination period only (March 1 - April 30) by using the Online Nomination Form or the PDF Nomination Form (see links below). Electronically submitted nominations are strongly preferred over mailed-in, hard-copy nominations.

Online Nomination Form - http://www.oacsalumni.org/content/HallOfFame/NominationProcess/OnlineForm
PDF Nomination Form - http://www.oacsalumni.org/content_files/HallOfFame/NominationProcess/form.pdf

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