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Thursday, November 27, 2014 at 11:45 am

Oven fire reported on Pike Road in Alexander

post by Billie Owens in alexander, fire

A kitchen fire is reported at 3013 Pike Road, Alexander. It is believed to be contained to the oven. Alexander fire is responding.

UPDATE 11:52 a.m.: Confirmed -- burnt food. Alexander back in service.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014 at 3:44 pm

Two-car accident, unknown injuries, on Route 98 north of Stroh Road

post by Billie Owens in accidents, alexander

A two-car accident, unknown injuries, is reported 10978 Alexander Road (Route 98) north of Stroh Road. Alexander fire and ambulance are responding.

Monday, November 24, 2014 at 2:26 pm

Law and Order: Fourth suspect charged with first-degree rape of woman in Elba

post by Billie Owens in batavia, alexander, corfu, crime, elba, Oakfield
Uriel Ramirez-Perez

Uriel Ramirez-Perez, 26, of Oak Orchard Road, Elba, is charged with first-degree rape, a Class B felony. The defendant was arrested after allegedly raping a female victim at an Elba residence. The charge is related to the previously reported charges of rape against three other Elba men. This defendant was allegedly present during the Nov. 16 incident. He is in county jail on $25,000 cash bail or $50,000 property bond. The incident was investigated by investigator Kristopher A. Kautz, deputy Dana Richardson and Angel Santos, investigator with the State Police.

Shannon Ann Caton, 39, of Fisher Road, Oakfield, is charged with: driving while intoxicated with a previous conviction within the last 10 years; resisting arrest; attempted escape, 3rd; speed not reasonable and prudent; and following too close. She was arrested Nov. 19 on the charges after she allegedly rear-ended another vehcile twice on East Main Street near Harvester Avenue in the City of Batavia. While at police headquarters, she slipped out of handcuffs and attempted to escape. She allegedly physically resisted her re-apprehension and was then jailed without bail. She is also charged with refusing to take a breath test. The incident was investigated by police officers Jason Ivison and James DeFreze.

Thomas K. Lee, 51, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with resisting arrest and obstruction of governmental administration. He was arrested Nov. 18 after allegedly interfering with a Batavia police officer's investigation into a domestic incident involving Lee. He allegedly resisted arrest and "attempted to kick patrols." He is in jail in lieu of $2,500 bail. The incident was investigated by police officers Jason Ivison and Chad Richards.

Shane Zimblis, 43, of Hutchins Street, Batavia, is charged with: operating a snowmobile with a BAC of .08 or higher, first offense; operating a snowmobile without liability insurance; no/inadequate headlight; operating an unregistered snowmobile; and following too close. The charges stem from an accident Nov. 18 on Pearl Street in the city wherein Zimblis was allegedly operating his snowmobile and struck an SUV. He is to appear in city court on Dec. 3. The incident was investigated by police officers Chad Richards and James DeFreze.

April L. Walradt, 37, of Bank Street, Batavia, was arrested Nov. 11 and charged with second-degree harassment. She allegedly made comments to another person and a youth that caused them alarm. She was issued an appearance ticket for city court. The incident was investigated by police offier Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

Matthew Michael Biggins, 25, of Rail Road Avenue, Alexander, is charged with third-degree forgery and petit larceny. He was arrested Nov. 14 after allegedly stealing three checks, making the checks out in his own name and then cashing them. He was issued an appearance ticket and is to appear in Alexander Town Court on Dec. 2. The incident was investigated by Sheriff's deputy Cory Mower.

Terrance Trae Allen Harley, 18, of Frandee Lane, Rochester, was arrested Nov. 22 on Clinton Street Road in Stafford and charged with unlawful possession of marijuana, speed violation (67 in a 55 mph zone), and having no or inadequate taillights. The charges were issued following a traffic stop for alleged vehicle and traffic law violations. Harley is to appear in Stafford Town Court on Dec. 11. The incident was investigated by sheriff's deputy Joseph Corona, assisted by deputy Andrew Hale.

Jennifer Lynn Stack, 28, of South Main Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd. She was arrested Nov. 23 after she entered the Batavia Walmart and remained in the store. These alleged actions violated an active order of protection issued by Batavia Town Court, prohibiting her from being on the premises. She was issued an appearance ticket and is to appear in court on Dec. 18. The incident was investigated by Sheriff's deputy Chad Minuto.

Adam Paul Hoopengardner, 34, of Bank Street Road, Elba, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or more and speeding (52 in a 40 mph zone). He was stopped on Lewiston Road Nov. 23 for allegedly speeding and an investigation revealed he was allegedly intoxicated while driving the vehicle. The incident was investigated by Sheriff's deputy Thomas Sanfratello.

James Russell Kosiorek, 22, of East Main Street, Batavia, was arrested Nov. 20 on a state parole warrant. He responded to the Sheriff's Office to turn himself in and was placed in county jail.

Gloria Susan Moretti, 37, of Main Road, Corfu, was arrested Nov. 7 and charged with unauthorized use of a vehicle. She was a co-renter of a vehicle from Sikes Enterprises, which allegedly has not been returned and has not been paid for. She was issued a computer-generated appearance ticket and is due in city court Dec. 2. The incident was investigated by Batavia police officer James DeFreze.

Sunday, November 23, 2014 at 4:57 pm

Weather notes for Sunday evening

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, alexander, weather

At Tops, they might be singing "Yes! We Have No Bananas," and no asparagus and no pink grapefruit and no celery -- the produce section is running low on just about everything.

But help is on the way, according to managers. The fresh produce truck is in route, making other deliveries along the way. There's just no ETA.

Blame heavy snow, of course.

Speaking of running low on supplies, Janelle Larsen and Laura Kauppi, both of Batavia, and, Timothy Zorn, of Rochester, spent the day volunteering in the Buffalo area delivering food and other supplies to people who have been trapped in their homes by heavy snow.

Laura writes:

The efforts of the National Guard and police are concentrated on snow removal. Many people are stuck in their house with little or no food or supplies. We purchased water, milk, soup, bread, cereal, granola bars, crackers and peanut butter, Pop Tarts, (infant) formula, soy formula, diapers, cat food, dog food and baby wipes. We also had medicine, but we were thankful no one needed it.

Most people we helped were disabled or had very small children at home. Many roads are still closed, and lots of people are stuck with no food in travel bans. We drove to the edge of the bans, and then we had to walk, even as much as a mile to get to homes. These were people not receiving help anywhere else, and were very grateful.

We were surprised at how honest people were. One women told us she only wanted cat food and one milk (carton), and she wanted us to "keep the rest for people who needed it more." A young dad took Pop Tarts, saying "I just want something for my kids."

Another women took only milk, but told us about a single dad snowed in next door. He was grateful for some cereal, milk and bread. At a trailer park, we made up bags with two soups, one milk, a cereal, bread and several granola bars. We dropped them on the porch of every snowed-in house. Another mom was incredibly grateful for soy formula, diapers, milk and cereal. She was in the driving ban and with two babies was unable to walk the .5 mile to reach the nearest open store. Another women took wipes, diapers and cereal for the seven children she was caring for.

There is a Facebook group, WNY Storm Help 2014, where people have been posting needs for themselves or neighbors. It didn't take much time or money for us to make a difference, and I hope we have inspired others to do so, either to help with this storm, the inevitable flooding or the next storm.

We also received this storm-related e-mail fromReginaKoehler:

My husband is a truck driver and was stranded on the highway during the snowstorm. There were people from Alexander who got him and his truck to a safe warm place, a fire station, where he remained for three days. There were several people there who had also been rescued. The Red Cross brought in food and cots. I just want to say on behalf of my family and myself a GREAT BIG THANK YOU to the Town of Alexander for saving my husband and my son's dad, and my grandchildren's grandpa. It will be a happy Thanksgiving for us. It could have gone very bad had he been stuck out there and run out of fuel. Bless you all and have a GREAT holiday season....

UPDATE 5:25 p.m.: I almost forgot about this picture below. I stopped by the Tonawanda about 4:30 to see if the creek was rising.

Friday, November 21, 2014 at 8:06 pm

Weather notes for Friday evening

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, alexander, Darien, Oakfield, weather

Top photo, members of the Oakfield Fire Department assist the Alexander Fire Department in clearing snow from the rec hall in Alexander (photo submitted by Jeff Christensen).

Six special rescue trucks from the New York City Fire Department, part of a special task force, were at the Home Depot in Batavia today on their way to Buffalo. The trucks were specifically designed and built for high-water rescues following Hurricane Sandy. The trucks were sent to WNY in anticipation of flooding Monday with warmer weather, rain and snow melt. The vehicles can carry up to 16 people each through high water. (Photos submitted by Steve Hynes Fisher)

Some coverage from The Batavian's news partner, 13WHAM:

The Thruway Authority announced the I-90 has reopened.

Press release:

Motorists should be aware of the following restrictions:

  • Thruway (I-90) between Exit 50A (Cleveland Drive) and Exit 61 (Ripley – Pennsylvania state line) will be limited to essential travel only, including travel needed to exit the region, deliver necessary supplies, and remove snow. In this section, all exits are open wherever localities have lifted travel bans.

The following exits remain closed to traffic exiting from the Thruway, although traffic is permitted to enter at these locations:

  • Exit 56 (Blasdell -- Orchard Park -- Mile Strip Road -- NY Route 179)
  • Exit 57 (Hamburg -- East Aurora -- NY Route 75)
  • Exit 57A (Eden --  Angola)
  • Exit 58 (Silver Creek -- Irving -- NY Routes 5, 20 & 438)
  • I-190 (Niagara Thruway) is open, but there is no access to Exit 1 (South Ogden) through Exit 5 (Hamburg – Louisiana).

The Town of Darien office is closed until 9 a.m., Monday.

Photo -- Steve Ferry digging out the Bartlett residence in Darien:

John Brown's car in Alexander this morning:

Tuesday, November 18, 2014 at 6:38 am

Law and Order: Alleged driving while license revoked lands Wyoming couple in trouble

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, alexander, Bethany, byron, crime, Darien, Oakfield, pembroke

Christian J. Finkney, 26, of South Academy Street, Wyoming, is charged with 18 counts of criminal contempt, 2nd, aggravated unlicensed operation and unlicensed operation. Ashly N. Boatwright, 27, of South Academy Street, Wyoming, is charged with 18 counts of facilitating aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd, and one count of circumventing an interlock device. Finkney allegedly drove a vehicle 18 times in Genesee County while his license was revoked for an alcohol-related offense. Darien Town Court reportedly directed Finkney not to drive until his privileges were reinstated by the DMV. Finkney was arraigned in Batavia, Darien, Alexander, Pembroke and Bethany and jailed on $10,000 bail. Boatwright is accused of allowing Finkney to drive a vehicle registered to her on 18 occasions. She is also accused of blowing into an interlock device to circumvent the device.

Nathan Robert Arnold, 22, of Terry Street, Byron, is charged with criminal contempt, 1st. Arnold was allegedly involved in a fight with a person protected from him by court order. He was jailed on $5,000 bail.

Jamie Michelle Lauck, 27, of Spencer Court, Batavia, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .18 and parking in the highway. The Sheriff's Office received a report at 12:51 a.m. Sunday on Colby Road, Darien. Lauck was allegedly located in a vehicle stopped in the roadway by Sgt. Thomas Sanfratello.

Louis James Stoller Jr., 22, of Erie Street, Le Roy, is charged with burglary, 2nd, and petit larceny. Stoller is accused of entering a residence on South Street Road, Le Roy, with the intent of taking the dog from the residence. He was jailed on $5,000 cash bail or $10,000 bond.

Damian Christopher Woodruff, 32, of Walmore Road, Niagara Falls, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon, 4th. Woodruff was stopped by Deputy Patrick Reeves on federal game lands on Sour Springs Road, Alabama. He was allegedly hunting without a permit. He allegedly was found in possession of a shotgun, in violation of the law barring convicted felons of possessing firearms. 

Nathaniel Michael Dickes, 21, of Broadway Street, Oakfield, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Dickes was allegedly involved in a fight at 9:57 pm., Saturday, at a location on Webber Avenue, Oakfield, in which Dickes allegedly pushed and grabbed another person and threw an object at that person.

Donald Ivan Manes, 58, of Lewiston Road, Basom, is charged with DWI, refusal to take breath test, misuse of dealer plate, speeding (74 in a 55 mph zone) and failure to keep right. Manes was stopped at 2:06 a.m. Sunday on Kelsey Road, Batavia, by Deputy Joseph Corona.

Kristen Irene Merriam, 33, of Summit Street, Batavia, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Merriam was charged following a traffic stop at 12:30 a.m. Saturday on Clinton Street Road, Stafford, by Deputy Joseph Corona.

Bryan D. Bates, 35, of Mill Street, Batavia, is charged with conspiracy, falsely reporting an incident to law enforcement and offering a false instrument, 1st. Bates allegedly reported an incident that did not occur and providing a false written statement. Bates is being held on a parole violation.

Tyler J. Warfle, 19, of Chapel Street, Elba, is charged with five counts of identify theft, 3rd. Warfle is accused of using the debit card of another person without permission.

Mark T. Zdrojewski, 61, of Meyer Road, Pendleton, is charged with issuing a bad check. Zdrojewski was arrested on a warrant. 

A 17-year-old resident of Liberty Street in Batavia was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear. He was taken into custody during an investigation of an unrelated complaint.

Sunday, November 2, 2014 at 5:45 pm

Tri-Town Varsity wins NOFA Championship

post by Rick D. Franclemont in alexander, football, sports, youth

The Tri-Town Varsity Trojans football team defeated the Oakfield/Elba Titans yesterday 39-37 to claim the Niagara Orleans Football Association championship. This was the Trojans first championship team in 36 years.

Sunday, October 26, 2014 at 7:45 am

Avon's elusive QB ends Alexander's football season

post by Howard B. Owens in alexander, football, high school sports, sports

Above are three pictures that illustrate the problem Alexander faced Saturday in its Class DD Section V semi-final playoff game against Avon in Honeoye Falls.

The problem's name is Joe Sotak, the 155-pound, 5'9" stick of butter who led the Avon offense to a tally of 26 points over four quarters of whack-a-mole.

When Sotak could be caught, he proved impossible to hold.

The senior QB was seven for 10 passing for 96 yards and a TD. He also rushed for 147 yards and two TDs on 22 carries.

In the sequence above, Sotak pumps but doesn't throw as Rick Amico and Derrick Busch appear to be closing in for the sack. Sotak glided a step or two forward, causing Amico and Busch to whiff, then lofted a pass just over the heads of Tristan Aldinger and Cody Trzecieski to where only Avon's Zack Loomis could catch it as he stood on the three-yard line. Loomis needed only turn and take a couple of steps into the end zone.

The Trojans managed to cross the goal line once all afternoon, and that score didn't come until the 4th quarter.

A bad snap prevented Alexander from putting at least three on the board in the first half.

Final, 26-7.

Alexander finishes with a 5-3 record while Avon advances to face Clyde-Savannah in the Class DD final next week.

"It wasn't the result we were expecting tonight," said Head Coach Tim Sawyer. "We had a good week of preparation; however, Avon controlled both sides of the line of scrimmage. Avon played physical and fast tonight.

"Our overall body of work for the season has been quite good," he added. "We won some big games along the way. I hate to see the seniors go, but they have left their foot print on this program over the past two years."

Just before the end of the half, with the Trojans down 12-0, an Alexander player got a hand on Joe Sotak and nearly dragged him to the ground, but Sotak spun away and turned what looked like a certain sack into about a 30-yard gain, all the way down to the two-yard line. The gain, however, was negated by a block to the back foul later in Sotak's run.

Tristan Aldinger scores for Alexander

Tristan Aldinger with the ball

Jared Browne at QB

Action early in the second half

Jared Browne with a pass

Avon's star running back Brandon Mynter was mostly contained by the Alexander defense.

Head Coach Tim Sawyer

Alexander HS grad Matt Szymaski, home on leave from the Marines, attended Saturday's game.

To purchase prints, click here.

Saturday, October 18, 2014 at 10:49 pm

In clash of 4-2 teams, Alexander comes out on top, 21-0

post by Howard B. Owens in alexander, byron-bergen, elba, football, high school sports

Before facing off against Elba/Byron-Bergen, Alexander's Head Coach Tim Sawyer offered an assessment of what it would take the Trojans to beat the Lancers.

"We need 48 minutes of perfect football," he said.

After the game, Sawyer said his team got pretty close.

"I feel like we get maximum effort out of our boys, a good effort, but we still continue to make some mistakes," Sawyer said. "Today we played a pretty complete game. I'd say 42, 44 minutes of pretty good football."

The result was a 21-0 win, giving Alexander a 5-2 record on the season and carrying them into sectional play on a four-game win streak.

Pre-game, the meeting of the two 4 and 2 Genesee Region rivals promised to be a close battle, and for the first 11 minutes of play, that's exactly what it was. But as the scoreless first quarter drew to a close, LB Derrick Busch cut in front of a Lancers receiver to snag a Garrett Chapell pass and dash 28 yards unimpeded for the score.

"That gave us the momentum that carried us through the game," said senior Tyler Laird.

In the second quarter, RB Tristan Aldinger scored on a 44-yard run and RB Jacob Wozniak scored on a 50-yard run.

"Running up the middle, my fullback, Al Hadsall, had a really good block on the inside, so I broke it off on the outside of him and the whole team really put it together on that play and helped me score," Wozniak said.

Sawyer said he knew coming into the game that the Lancers feature a strong, aggressive defense, and he came prepared.

Six different players took snaps and four backs took turns taking handoffs.

"We wanted to use our speed early to get out wide and get them to spread and they did," Sawyer said. "Then we started running zone run up the middle, and you guys saw the game kind of open up for us."

Wozniak and Aldinger shouldered most of the load out of the backfield. Wozniak had 23 carries for 108 yards and the TD, and Aldinger had 128 yards and a TD on 14 carries.

Elba/BB isn't an easy team to shut down offensively. It's a good team with Chapell, John Hochmuth and Steele Truax to power the scoring.

Yet, they were shutout.

"I give all the credit to (Defensive Coach Matt) McCracken," Sawyer said. "I think he's under 30, but he's (the) mastermind."

Laird said the defensive line really sparked the performance.

"Our guys were working hard," Laird said. "Our D-line has got a push and they were opening up the lanes for me to make tackles. That goes for me and the other linebackers Cody Trzecieski and Jake Wozniak. The linemen really opened it up for us."

This is the second year the Trojans have run a three-man front on defense, and it's kind of a secret weapon, Sawyer said.

"I think that confuses our opponents a bit and we're getting pretty good at it," Sawyer said.

On Saturday, Alexander travels to Honeoye Falls for a first-round sectional game against Avon.

Last year the Trojans made it all the way to Section V finals. This year's team is a very different kind of team, with more speed and not as much power, but Laird said that's the only difference between each year's teams.

This year's team is just as ready to challenge for a title.

"It was rough at the beginning of the year trying to adjust to a new scheme, but these kids are working just as hard as that team did last year and they just keep getting better every single week," Laird said. "It's basically the same atmosphere as last year. Five and one in the GR and I'm excited. It feels great."

Top photo: Jacob Wozniak breaks free for Alexander's third, and final touchdown -- a 50-yard run.

Elba/BB's Mike Shanley comes close to blocking Zach Shilvock second of three extra points.

Steele Truax dives for a few extra yards in the third quarter.

Tristan Aldinger comes close to a third-quarter pass interception.

Samuel Browne picking up yardage in the third quarter.

Mike Shanley on a run in the third quarter.

UPDATE: Rick Franclemont also took pictures of the game. You can view them here.

To purchase prints, click here.

Friday, October 17, 2014 at 1:27 pm

Mudding featured in new song and video from The Farm

post by Howard B. Owens in alexander, Bethany, entertainment, music, The Farm

The Farm, the Nashville-based band featuring Krista Marie, from Alexander, released a new single and video today, "Mud." I think we can be pretty sure it wasn't shot in Bethany.

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