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Friday, April 6, 2012 at 9:39 am

Law and Order: Batavia resident accused of smashing car windows in Stafford

post by Howard Owens in batavia, Alabama, crime, Stafford

Lennie M. Colley, 46, of South Lyon Street, Batavia, is charged with a felony count of criminal mischief, 3rd, DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and consumption of a alcohol in a motor vehicle. Colley is accused of smashing out windows of motor vehicles at about 2:40 a.m., today, on Route 5 in Stafford. Deputy James Diehl and Sgt. Brian Frieday responded to the call and found Colley allegedly driving drunk.

Lee Ann Marchese, 51, of Alleghany Road, Alabama, is charged iwth burglary 2nd. Marchese is accused of entering a dwelling in Stafford on Tuesday and stealing property.

Dimitri Carmelo Burton, 19, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Burton is accused of shoplifting from the AT&T store on Veterans Memorial Drive. Burton was jailed on $250 bail.

Thursday, April 5, 2012 at 4:05 pm

Drug-dealing father of 10 children given six years in prison

post by Howard Owens in batavia, crime

The assessment of Assistant District Attorney Will Zickl is that Carlos Torres is "committed to the commerce of illegal drugs," and today Judge Robert C. Noonan said he agrees.

Noonan noted that the probation report listed the names of six children Torres is responsible for, but in what the judge called one of the most bizzare paragraphs he's ever read in a probation report, Torres admits to fathering four other children. Torres, however, apparently doesn't know their names and their mothers have left the area.

He is obligated, according to Noonan, to make child-support payments for one of those four children, but hasn't been making payments.

"You're an irresponsible criminal who deserves the maximum sentence you negotiated," Noonan said.

Torres entered a guilty plea Jan. 9 to criminal possession in the fourth degree.

He was arrested in August and found carrying cocaine, crack and heroin with an estimated street value of more than $7,000.

At the time, Sgt. Steve Mullen, lead investigator for the Local Drug Enforcement Task Force, said "The weight of the powder cocaine, along with the number of bags of both crack and heroin, on top of his $4,000 (in cash), is significant for this county."

Torres came to the attention of investigators in May 2010 when he showed up at UMMC with gunshot wounds

At the time, he claimed he had been walking down Indian Falls Road when a car pulled up behind him, somebody demanded his wallet, then shot him. He called a friend who drove him to the hospital.

In May 2010, Torres was on probation out of Erie County for a 2008 drug conviction.

Attorney David Widenor argued vigorously that his 37-year-old client is a sincerely changed man who has seen the error of his ways.

"He wants to be a law-abiding citizen," Widenor said. "He has a family to support. He has six children he loves and wants to care for."

The August arrest derailed an opportunity for Torres to own a legitimate business locally, Widenor said, but the attempt itself was evidence that Torres knows he needs to get his life on a legitimate path.

"He wants to get out of this lifestyle he's been in," Widenor said.

Torres spoke briefly and quietly.

"I've been with the wrong people at the wrong times," Torres said. "I let my children down, but most of all, I let myself down. I want to change that."

Noonan said immediately that he agreed with Zickl's assessment.

"You have demonstrated that you're a drug dealer," Noonan said. "That's what you do and that's how you make a living."

After Noonan pronounced sentence, Torres's girlfriend, sitting in the gallery, began to cry. Torres and the woman have a child together.

Thursday, April 5, 2012 at 3:19 pm

Task force announces a series of drug-related arrests

post by Howard Owens in batavia, corfu, crime, Le Roy

The Local Drug Enforcement Task Force announced the arrest of 11 people on various drug-related charges stemming from three different enforcment actions by task force members.

Curtis M. Gallagher, 27, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of marijuana and criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th. Gallagher was arrested following the execution of a search warrant March 30 on his vehicle and residence. Gallagher was allegedly found in possession of a quantity of marijuana and a quantity of hydrocodone along with some drug paraphernalia. Gallagher was issued an appearance ticket.

On Saturday, the task force arrested five people who were allegedly using a hotel room "for the purpose of abusing crack cocaine," according to the press release. Upon raiding the room, investigators allegedly found a quantity of crack cocaine and buprenorphine hydrochloride. Taken into custody and jailed on $1,000 bail each were Pamela A. Adamski, 28, of Walnut Street, Batavia; Jodi L. Reed, 40, of South Pearl Street Road, Oakfield; Heather J. Nadolny, 28, of East Main Street, Batavia; Nicholas J. Volpe, 40, of Edwards Street, Batavia; and, Timothy J. Walsh, 44, of Redfield Parkway, Batavia.

Over a two-day period, March 21 and March 22, members of the task force along with uniformed deputies and police officers from Batavia and Le Roy, conducted a number of traffic stops. Along with citations issued, the following people were charged with drug-related offenses:

  • Nick Hawkins, 28, of Market Street, Brockport, and Seth Fisher, 24, of Asbury Road, Le Roy, were charged with unlawful possession of marijuana.
  • Alex Cordero, 24, of Avenue D, Rochester, was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana.
  • Phillip Ayala, 27, of Melville Street, Rochester, was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana.
  • Douglas Brown, 29, of East Main Street, Corfu, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana.
  • Pamela A. Adamski, 28, of Walnut Street, Batavia, and Dajuandrick Gardner, 35, of East Avenue, Batavia, are both charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th.  Adamski and Gardner were allegedly found in possession of cocaine. Gardner was also charged with unlawful possession of marijuana.
Thursday, April 5, 2012 at 7:33 am

Man accused of sex acts with a toddler

post by Howard Owens in batavia, crime

A 40-year-old Batavia man is accused of committing sexual acts on a 2-year-old over a three-month period.

James Little Jr. is being charged with three counts of criminal sexual act in the first degree.

Batavia PD released no further information on the case.

Little is scheduled to reappear in Batavia City Court on April 18.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 10:49 pm

Health department serves 'Buddha' with notice, Lang gives potpourri samples to be tested

A day after The Laughing Buddha announced that it was willing to cooperate with officials, owner Jay Lang was served a notice from New York State Health Department, banning him from selling potpourri over the counter. 

Lang said Tuesday he had voluntarily removed his products from the shelf days earlier, but now he's not permitted to restock them, according to the notice. 

"The health department stopped in this morning and told us we couldn't sell our products anymore," Lang said. "They were very polite and we cooperated fully. We gave them samples of our products that they will be testing for the banned cannabinoids.

"I also spoke to Det. Crossett (Batavia PD) this morning and he informed me that this is a civil matter and not a criminal matter," Lang added.

If he were to restock, the state could fine him up to $1,000. 

Local health department officials confirmed that Lang gave them samples and that tests would be done, but could not tell us exactly what was being done or being tested for, since it was being handled at the state level and not county level.

Products that are being tested include the potpourri that sells under the name White Rhino, Hammer Head and Yum Yum. 

"If the tests come back in my favor, I can restock the shelves," Lang said. "If they come back against me, they will let me know what compounds need to be changed to make the products legal." 

Lang has fifteen days to present proof that his products do not constitute a danger to the health of the people of the State of New York.

Since The Batavian first started following the story, numerous news stations have also picked up on this local story. 

Previous coverage: 

Photo by Howard Owens

Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 10:08 pm

Photo: Richmond Mausoleum

post by Howard Owens in batavia, Batavia Cemetery, Richmond Mausoleum

I've taken pictures of the Richmond Mausoleum before, but while I was on Harvester Avenue today, a gorgeous early spring day, I had an idea for a different approach (at least for me) to the shot. This is the result.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 3:57 pm

Merrill Lynch announces new office in Masse Gateway

post by Howard Owens in batavia, business, Masse Gateway Project

Masse Gateway -- a redevelopment project partially funded by NYS grants -- has its second tenant.

Merrill Lynch Global Wealth Management is building a new office -- that someday could employ 18 people -- in one of the former tractor factory buildings.

Martin G. Anderson, a director out of the Buffalo office, said Merrill Lynch has had its eye on Batavia for five years and those long-range plans are just coming to fruition.

"We know our clients in Batavia do not want to drive to Buffalo or Rochester to do business," Anderson said.

The office will initially open with 11 employees, including some brokers who were once with the old Smith Barney office in Batavia and jump shipped years ago to Merrill Lynch.

"This is going to be a bit of a homecoming for them," Anderson said.

Among them is Joshua Dent, a Bethany native who will manage the new office.

Previously, local business Creamy Creations announced it was moving to Masse Gateway.

There is 60,000 square feet available in the redevelopment project.

Merrill Lynch anticipates opening the office Aug. 1.

Top photo: Anderson and Dent with Julie Pacette, community development coordinator and Tom Mancuso, owner of Masse Gateway. Bottom photo, Mancuso, Dent and Anderson with City Manager Jason Molino during a meeting with the local media.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 1:32 pm

Batavia Enclosures celebrates graduation from BIC to its own facility

It was graduation day for Batavia Enclosures at the Batavia Industrial Center this morning.

The 24-year-old company is moving to its own 27,000-square-foot building, which will help better meet the needs of the growing enterprise.

Leonard Roberto founded the Batavia Enclosures in 1988 with only $6,000 in the bank.

"We didn’t have a name, no company, no product," Roberto said. "I just believed it was something I wanted do, so I quit my job and came here to Batavia and rented 4,000 square feet. I had no equipment and no customers. That’s how we started. My faith was that it would happen and it did happen."

Batavia Enclosures makes precision-engineered cases and racks for electronic companies. The additional space will allow it to introduce new manufacturing processes, including powder coating.

Roberto said the firm, which now has four employees, will likely add four or five workers with the expansion.

Meanwhile, he and his sons have started a second business called Savage IO, which manufactures a server -- a computer that stores and serves data to other computers over a network. That's where the big opportunity lies -- in the server industry -- which he says is currently the fastest-growing industry in the world.

Savage IO is potentially a multi-multi-million dollar company, Roberto said, and much of the space of the new building is intended to accommodate growth.

BIC President Tom Mancuso presented Roberto with a certificate of graduation in a ceremony at Moonjava Cafe in the Harvester Center and congratulated Roberto on his company's growth.

Roberto thanked Bank of Castile for facilitating the purchase of the new building.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 12:20 pm

Batavia PD releases annual report for 2011

post by Howard Owens in batavia, crime

In 2011, the Batavia Police Department responded to 16,991 calls for service and logged more than 154,000 patrol miles, according to a report released by the department.

Overall, the crime rate was up slightly in 2011 over 2010, but still down from the 2009 rate.

The rate in 2011 was 35.12 (an index computed by city population). In 2010, it was 34.93, and in 2009 it was 37.20.

There were 376 criminal arrests in 2011, compared to 575 in 2010.

Calls for service in the city peaked in 2007 at 17,707 and dropped off dramatically in 2008. The number has increased each year since and was 16,581 in 2010.

The detective bureau field 479 cases and pursued 396 criminal investigations.

There were 399 larcenies reported in 2011; 95 burglaries; 12 motor vehicle thefts; 32 assaults; zero murders; and 10 rapes.

The rape total was the highest of any of the past six years.

Besides rape, there were 20 total sex crimes reported in the city, down from 25 in 2010.

DWI arrests were up from 36 in 2010 to 47 in 2011.

There were 499 motor vehicle accidents reported in the city in 2011. That's down from a recent high of 528 in 2009.

In all, police officers inititated 3,517 traffic stops in 2011 and issued tickets for 1,054 moving violations.

A total 1,413 parking tickets were written.

The full report is available as a PDF. Click here to download.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012 at 11:07 am

Photo: Easter Bunny downtown

post by Howard Owens in batavia, business, downtown

The Easter Bunny is downtown today, hanging out outside the Enchanted Florist on East Main Street.

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