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August 8, 2012 - 9:20pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Bethany, art, Transit Road.

If you've driven down Transit Road in East Bethany during the past couple of weeks, you might have spotted a dragon rising out of the Earth.

Don't be afraid.

It's the artistic creation of Tom Stringham.

He started the sculpture project in 2000 and worked on it diligently for nearly two years, but then life got in the way of completing the steel and cooper mythical lizard.

A couple of weeks ago, Stringham's father encouraged Tom to get the sculpture out of the barn and put it on display, even though Stringham still needs to complete the dragon's tail.

Asked for the inspiration for the project, Stringham simply said, "it's a doodle."

Stringham and his father own and operate Emerald Models, which makes design prototypes, specializing in production of sculptures for artists and restoration of sculptures. The dragon sits in front of the production facility for Emerald Models.

August 8, 2012 - 8:43am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, alexander, Bethany.

Jolene Janelle Goodell, 32, of Attica Road, Attica, is charged with assault, 3rd, criminal contempt, 2nd, and endangering the welfare of a child. Goodell was picked up in the City of Batavia on a warrant out of Town of Alexander Court on the listed charges. Goodell was jailed on $2,500 bail.

William Delose Hirsch, 25, of Buckman Road, Bethany, is charged with unlawful imprisonment, 2nd. Hirsch was taken into custody by County Probation on an arrest warrant out of city court.

July 28, 2012 - 7:37pm
posted by Billie Owens in Bethany.

A tree is reportedly blocking the roadway on Chaddock Road in Bethany. Bethany Fire Department. Law enforcement is responding. Didn't catch the exact address.

UPDATE 7:59 p.m.: The responder on scene reports the tree is blocking half of the roadway, on the southbound side. Workers from the state Department of Transportation are called to the scene to cut the tree with chainsaws and remove it.

July 18, 2012 - 8:35am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Darien, Bethany, corfu.

Earl Edward Vattes, 38, of Jefferson Street, Wellsville, is charged with unlawful fleeing a police officer, 3rd. Vattes was taken into custody on an arrest warrant stemming from an alleged pursuit of a motorcyclist by local law enforcement Aug. 4. Vattes is accused of failure to stop for a police officer who attempted to initiate a traffic stop for an alleged traffic violation in the City of Batavia. The motorcycle operator was pursued into the Town of Bathany where Vattes is alleged to have dumped the bike and fled into a cornfield on foot. A search of the area was unsuccessful in locating the suspect and the Sheriff's Office believes Vattes has been identified as the operator of the motorcycle.

Nichole M. McKerrow, 27, of 227 Ross St., Batavia, is charged with DWI, two counts of aggravated DWI (Leandra's Law, for allegedly driving drunk with children in the car), aggravated unlicensed operation, 2nd, and refusal to take breath test. McKerrow is accused of being involved in a minor motor-vehicle accident. When Sgt. John Peck and Officer Kevin DeFelice arrived on scene, McKerrow was allegedly found passed out in the car. Two children, ages 3 and 5, were also allegedly in the vehicle. McKerrow was jailed on $2,500 bail.

Garth P. Hubbard, 21, of Kibbe Wilcos Road, Pitcher, is charged with public lewdness. Hubbard is accused of urinating in public at Darien Lake Theme Park.

Bernadine Doris Peet, 40, of Town Pump Circle, Rochester, is charged with DWI and speeding. Peet was allegedly caught on radar driving 56 mph in a 35 mph zone in the Village of Corfu at 10:51 p.m., Monday, by Deputy Patrick Reeves.  Peet was jailed on $2,000 bail.

Jason Michael Wagner, 33, of Alden Road, Carnegie, Pa., is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and failure obey police officer. Wagner allegedly attempted to drive around Sheriff's patrols that were directing traffic at the intersection of Route 77 and Sumner Road, Darien, at 11:29 p.m., Tuesday. Wagner was released on $200 pre-arranged bail.

July 13, 2012 - 3:01pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, Bethany.

A possible electrical fire in a wall is reported at a residence at 4646 Conway Road in Bethany. The owner reports an outlet is hot and he smells smoke. No flames are showing. A Bethany firefighter on scene confirms nothing is showing. Alexander is also responding, non-emergency mode.

UPDATE 3:04 p.m.: They are going to scan the wall with an infrared camera.

UPDATE 3:12 p.m.: Alexander is returning, in service.

UPDATE 3:22 p.m.: The problem has been handled. Bethany is back in service.

July 10, 2012 - 7:54am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Bethany.

A motorcyclist laid his bike down Monday afternoon to avoid what he thought would be a collision with a train at a railroad crossing on Molasses Hill Road, Bethany.

Richard T. Apps, 58, of Alexander, was riding north on Molasses Hill at 1:08 p.m., at a time when a Norfolk and Southern train was stopped on the east side of the railroad crossing.

As the train started to move west, according to Deputy Joseph Graff's report, it sounded its horn and the crossing gates were activated.

Apps reportedly said he saw the gates lowering and heard the horn. He said he was startled and applied his brakes.

"The motorcyclist laid the motorcycle down on its left side to avoid what he thought would be an anticipated collision," Graff wrote in his report.

Graff said Apps had a limited view of the railroad crossing due to a crest in the road and trees blocking the view to the east.

Apps suffered only minor injuries and did not require an ambulance transport to the hospital.

(Note: Rendering from Police Accident Report. Not to scale.)

July 7, 2012 - 10:39am
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, Bethany.

A shed fire is reported at 10330 Bethany Center Road, East Bethany.

Bethany Fire Department with mutual aid from Town of Batavia responding.

UPDATE 10:41 a.m.: Homeowner appears to have put out the fire with a garden hose.

UPDATE 10:45 a.m.: Town of Batavia back in service.

UPDATE 11:05 a.m.: A Bethany tanker has gone back in service.

UPDATE 11:16 a.m.: Bethany is back in service.

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June 27, 2012 - 11:08am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Bethany.

Two cars attempting to move aside for a southbound ambulance on Route 63 on Tuesday ended up bumping each other, sending one car off the roadway and into a sign post.

One person was slightly injured in the 10:58 a.m. accident.

Katelynn M. Hale, 19, of Stafford, was in the passing lane in the area of 5769 Ellicott St. Road, Bethany, when a Mercy EMS ambulance responding to an emergency call approached from behind.

Hale pulled to the right and collided with a car driven by Rita C. Vannorman, 25, of Arkport.

Vannorman was also attempting to pull over for the emergency vehicle. Her front right bumper hit Hale's back right bumper.

Hale complained of neck pain but did not require transport to a hospital.

No citations were issued.

The accident was investigated by Deputy Joseph Graff.

June 11, 2012 - 5:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Basom, crime, Bethany, Alabama.

Valerie Ann Parker, 32, of Parker Road, Basom, is charged with assault, 3rd. Parker was reportedly involved in a verbal argument with another woman when she allegedly head-butted the woman, breaking her nose.

Shawn MIchael Twardowski, 29, of Vine Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt, 1st, and aggravated harassment, 2nd. Twardowski was taken into custody on a warrant out of Town of Oakfield Court and jailed on $2,500 bail.

Albert Andrew Ackerman, 47, of Silver Road, Bethany, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Ackerman is accused of grabbing, pushing and punching a woman during a domestic dispute. An order of protection was issued requiring Ackerman to stay away from the woman.

Jason Robert Sando, 45, of Walkers Corners Road, Byron, is charged with unlawful imprisonment, 2nd, and harassment, 2nd. Sando is accused of restricting a woman's movements and subjecting her to physical contact during a domestic dispute. He was jailed on $1,000 bail.

Tammy L. Price, 40, of 1526 Kingsley Road, Wyoming, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or higher, unsafe start and uninspected motor vehicle. Price was taken into custody by Le Roy PD after her vehicle was allegedly observed pulling out of a parking lot in an unsafe manner.

Joshua A. Mead, 27, of Downing Avenue, Buffalo, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and following too closely. Mead is accused driving drunk at the time he was involved in a motor-vehicle accident at 12:04 a.m. Sunday on Route 77 in Darien. Mead was taken into custody by Sgt. Greg Walker. Darien Fire Department assisted at the scene. (Initial Report)

Terrance A. Falk, 47, of West Main Street, Le Roy, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Falk is accused of dumping a plastic tote filled with paper over his wife's head during a domestic dispute.

Ashley Allen Wayne, 46, of Rose Circle, Hamlin, is accused of being a fugitive from justice and was cited for no seat belt. Wayne was stopped on Route 237, Byron, for allegedly not wearing a seat belt. During the stop, Deputy Chris Parker discovered Wayne was wanted on a warrant out of Pennsylvania for allegedly endangering another person. Wayne was jailed pending extradition.

Daniel Gordon Vanderwalle, 33, of Stuart Avenue, Newark, was arrested on a bench warrant. Vanderwalle is accused of not appearing on a charge of petit larceny in Town of Batavia Court.

May 29, 2012 - 1:51am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Memorial Day, Bethany, bergen.

There were several Memorial Day observances throughout Genesee County today.  Here are photos from the Genesee County Park, Williams Park, the VA Center, the Bergen parade, the Batavia parade and the St. Jerome's ceremony.

If you're unable to view the slide show below, click here.

To purchase prints of these photos, click here.

May 16, 2012 - 5:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, alexander, Bethany.

William Delose Hirsch, 25, of Buchman Road, Bethany, is charged with menacing, 2nd, reckless endangerment, 2nd, and unlawful imprisonment, 2nd. Hirsch is accused of driving a motor vehicle at 8:49 p.m., Monday, from Batavia to Pavilion in a manner that was reckless and menacing to his female passenger. Hirsch is accused of not letting that woman exit the vehicle while on Ellicott Street in the City of Batavia. Hirsch was arraigned in Pavilion on the first two counts and in city court on the third. He was released on his own recognizance.

Neil Patrick Jacobs, 48, of Creek Road, Batavia, is charged with two counts of criminal contempt, 2nd. Jacobs is accused of possessing a firearm after being ordered to surrender all firearms to the Genesee County Sheriff's Office. The alleged failure to surrender the firearm was in violation of two orders of protection issued by Family Court on April 23. Following arraignment, Jacobs was placed under the supervision of Genesee Justice.

A 16-year-old resident of of Railroad Avenue, Alexander, is charged with unlawful dealing with a child. The youth is accused of hosting an underage drinking party.

Daniel E. Plath, 62, of Old Creek Road, Alexander, is charged with felony DWI, felony driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, aggravated unlicensed operation, 1st, unlicensed operation, operating a motor vehicle with an open container of alcohol and driver's view obstructed. Plath was reportedly on his way home from his girlfriend's house in Batavia at 2:44 a.m., May 12, when deputies were called for a report of a possibly drunk person trying to buy beer at a store.

May 10, 2012 - 11:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Bethany, county planning.

County Planning Director Jim Duval is retiring after 36 years with the county June 14.

To help celebrate his final planning board meeting, Board Member Lucine Kauffman baked him a chocolate cake decorated with symbols of some of the planning issues the county has dealt with, such as signs, windmills and the STAMP project (symbol: a postage stamp on a stick).

Other members brought in drinks, cookies, cheese and crackers and other refreshments, which were served after the meeting.

Duval, a Bethany resident and Bethany volunteer firefighter, plans to stay in the area.

He noted that he'll now have more time to respond to daytime emergency calls.

Duval also told board members they will be left in good hands with an outstanding planning staff.

April 24, 2012 - 9:25am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Bethany, Stafford.

A 70-year-old man from Gates was involved in a single-car accident Monday night that caused 231 National Grid customers to lose power for about four hours.

Morley J. Pray, of Ashton Drive, Gates, was driving southbound on Clipnock Road at 7:13 p.m. when his vehicle went off the west shoulder of the road for an unknown reason.

Pray was reportedly unable to get the 2004 Chevy pickup back on the road before striking a petroleum pipeline cap and then a National Grid utility pole in the area of 9455 Clipnock Road.

No citations were issued.

Pray suffered minor injuries, but did not require transport to a hospital.

The accident was investigated by Sgt. Greg Walker.

April 23, 2012 - 9:24pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather, Bethany, Stafford.

Some 231 National Grid customers in Bethany and Stafford are without power.

The cause is not known at this time.

National Grid estimates power will be restored at 11:15 p.m.

Power went out at 7:59 p.m.

The location is from Ellicott Street Road, including Little Canada, spreading northeast toward Route 5, across Transit Road.

March 28, 2012 - 6:47pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in photos, Bethany.

Driving down Francis Road this afternoon, I spotted this stand of trees at the crest of the hill with the fluffy clouds blowing by in the background and thought it might make a nice shot.

March 28, 2012 - 6:39pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in business, Bethany, Lei-Ti Campground.

Lei-Ti Campground on Francis Road, Bethany, was voted by users of the Woodall's Campground Directory, as one of the top 100 campgrounds in the United States.

There are 1,700 campgrounds in the U.S.

Woodall's is a popular and widely used campground directory, owned by Affinity Group, based in Ventura, Calif.

There were reportedly hundreds of thousands of votes cast over the 10-month long contest, according to Woodall's, which was also a sweepstakes for a chance to win a seven-day cruise to Hawaii.

Photo: John Hollwendel, owner of Lei-Ti.

March 7, 2012 - 1:01pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, Bethany.

A grass fire is reported at 9624 Clipnock Road in Bethany. It's between Torrey and Little Canada roads. Bethany Fire Department is responding.

UPDATE 1:12 p.m.: A brush truck out of Stafford is requested to provide mutual aid.

UPDATE 1:14 p.m.: The fire has progressed to the woods. All available manpower out of Bethany Fire Department is requested. Plus, a tanker from Stafford is called in. Town of Batavia is called to provide a brush truck and one tanker.

UPDATE 1:18 p.m.: A tanker and Gaitors (fire-resistant leg protection wear) an all-terrain vehicle known as a Gator from Alexander, plus all its available firefighters, are called in.

From reader Destin Danser:

"It's actually a Gator from Alexander, as in the all terrain vehicle made by John Deere. Not gaitors. They have one outfitted with tracks and a water pump on the back that they use for fighting grass fires, plus a medical back for it to use for search and rescue."

UPDATE 1:27 p.m.: A full crew from Darien is standing by in its fire hall.

UPDATE 1:32 p.m.: A deputy was expedited to the scene because of a male-female domestic incident at the location. One of them left in a vehicle on Clipnock Road.

UPDATE 1:37 p.m.: A Pavilion pumper/tanker is requested to approach from Transit Road, as County Highway personnel report the fire is heading in that direction.

UPDATE 1:46 p.m.: A portion of the fire is out or nearly out. But there are hot spots along the swath eastward.

UPDATE 1:49 p.m.: Town of Batavia's response is cancelled and the unit(s) returning. The firefighters report the Transit Road area is under control.

UPDATE 1:52 p.m.: The fire near Transit Road is completely out. Mercy medics are called to the scene ASAP by the Bethany fire command. An adult male in his 50s is reportedly having trouble breathing, is passed out now and has a history of heart problems.

UPDATE 1:55 p.m.: Fire command directs a unit to the staging area to provide oxygen.

UPDATE 2:01 p.m.: All traffic is being shut down at East Bethany Le Roy Road.

UPDATE 2:13 p.m.: The roadway is reopened.

UPDATE 2:24 p.m.: Pavilion units are back in service. Mercy transported a patient to UMMC.

UPDATE 2:35 p.m.: Stafford units back in service. Some of Bethany's personnel clearing the scene.

UPDATE 2:43 p.m.: The fire is out. Darien is standing down from standby duty in its quarters. Alexander is back in service. Bethany is back in service.

March 5, 2012 - 1:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in BARNS, photos, Bethany, Little Tonawanda Creek.

I took a drive out to Bethany and back this morning -- came away with two photos: Above, a barn on Cook Road (taken from Creek Road) and below, the Little Tonawanda as it winds along the side of Mill Road.

February 27, 2012 - 5:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Bethany, Sheriff's Office.

The newest deputy the Sheriff's Office is no rookie. He has more than seven years experience in law enforcement, including about a year with the Batavia Police Department.

Matthew C. Fleming joined the force six days ago and said he's been readily accepted by everybody in the department.

"Ever since I decided I wanted to be a cop, I always looked at the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office as the ideal place to end up," Fleming said. "When these opportunities come up, you want to take advantage of the opportunity."

The Fleming family goes back a few generations in Bethany, and as a lifelong county resident, Fleming said he thought it was natural to be out patrolling the county.

"Genesee County was a great place to grow up and I feel like growing up here gave me a great shot at life, just everything the area has to offer," Fleming said. "It means a lot ot patrol the same areas I grew up in and hopefully offer something back."

A 2003 high school regents graduate from Alexander Central School, Fleming studied criminal justice at SUNY Brockport. He completed his basic police training in 2007 and has worked as a public safety officer/dispatcher with the New York Park Police and New York State University Police in Oswego and Buffalo.  He is a certified general topics instructor, firearms instructor and OC spray instructor.

Fleming replaces a deputy who retired Dec. 31.

"Deputy Fleming will be a great asset to the Genesee County Sheriff's Office," Sheriff Gary Maha said. "He possesses all the qualities we look for in our deputies -- integrity, professionalism, dedication and dependability. We are pleased to have him as part of our team."

February 15, 2012 - 12:06pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, Bethany, Stafford.

A fully involved barn fire is reported at 5816 Torrey Road in the Town of Bethany. Bethany and Stafford fire departments are responding.

The location is between Clipnock and Little Canada roads.

UPDATE 12:10 p.m.: Attica, Alexander, South Byron are also called in, along with all equipment from Pavilion Fire Department. National Grid is called to the scene.

UPDATE 12:13 p.m.: York Fire Department is put on standby.

UPDATE 12:27 p.m.: The fill-in from York is cancelled. All units headed to the scene are told to come in non-emergency mode.

UPDATE 12:42 p.m.: The structure is actually a work shed. The homeowner was welding inside the shed when it caught fire.

UPDATE 1:08 p.m.: The fire is out.




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