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Saturday, January 25, 2014 at 9:28 pm

Photos: Corfu's 2014 Winterfest

post by Howard B. Owens in corfu, winterfest

In Corfu today, the big event was the annual Winterfest, which includes vendors selling and demonstrating various wares, live music, outdoor hockey and snow play, and a K-9 demonstration featuring Deputy Chris Erion and his dog "Destro."

Above, Krystal Chavez and her 6-year-old son Kristian check out items created by members of the Pembroke Woodturners Guild while Mark Williams watches.

Players had to keep clearing snow away from the ice hockey rink in order to keep playing.

Deputy Chris Erion and Destro during a demonstration of what Destro is able to do.

Destro alerts on a "bad guy." If Erion gives the command, Destro will let a person know he better watch it. The "bad guy" was played by a Corfu police officer.

Peter Lotz with Venus, a goshawk. Venus and the other birds below were brought to Winterfest by Kkyhunter Birds of Prey, a company that provides wildlife educational programs and displays throughout Western New York.


Saturday, January 25, 2014 at 4:22 pm

Photo: Flag barn in Corfu in the snow

post by Howard B. Owens in BARNS, corfu, weather

If you've ever driven down Route 33 heading into Corfu, you've seen this barn.

When I left Le Roy at 2:30, there was no snow falling. As I arrived in Corfu at 3:15, it was coming down pretty good.

Thursday, January 23, 2014 at 7:05 pm

Law and Order: Woman accused of leaving dog with no food while on trip to Florida

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

Lauren K. Pellegrino, 32, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with abandonment of animal and failure ot provide sustenance for an animal. Officers James Defreze and Chad Richards were dispatched to 129 Jackson St., Batavia, at 6:44 a.m. Jan. 6 to check on the welfare of a reportedly malnourished dog that was found by Pellegrino's landlord. The officers found a boxer/pitbull mix inside the residence. The officers determined the dog was allegedly "extremely malnourished."  Pellegrino allegedly left the dog unattended in the residence while she went on a vacation to Florida. The dog was removed from the residence and is being nursed back to health at the Genesee County Animal Shelter. Pellegrino was issued an appearance ticket on the charges.

Rachel E. Rast, 26, of Barefoot Lane, Caledonia, is charged with harassment, obstructing governmental administration and resisting arrest. Officers Darryle Streeter and Stephen Cromiller responded to a report of a disturbance at Batavia Gardens at 1:13 p.m. Rast allegedly resisted arrest and in the process struck an officer in the head.

Kristopher J. Staats, 23, of Montclair Avenue, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Staats allegedly stole $64.95 cents worth of steaks from Settler's Restaurant while employed by the restaurant.

Marc David Unger, 31, of East Main Street, Corfu, was arrested on a warrant for alleged violation of probation.

Brooke Lyn Blaszak, 22, of Summit Street, Batavia, is charged with grand larcney, 4th. Blaszak allegedly stole $1,400 worth of property from an acquaintance. Blaszak was jailed on $1,000 bail

Monday, January 20, 2014 at 2:20 pm

Law and Order: Le Roy man accused of stealing co-pays at doctor's office

post by Howard B. Owens in Basom, batavia, Alabama, bergen, byron, corfu, crime, Darien, Le Roy, Oakfield

James Mitchell, 35, of Le Roy, is charged with petit larceny. Mitchell was arrested following a months-long investigation by the Livingston County Sheriff's Office into reports of stolen co-payments at a doctor's office where Mitchell worked in Avon. The investigation took time, according to LCSO, because of lengthy billing cycles and victims coming forward. Mitchell was allegedly stealing co-pays as patients checked out at their physician's office. The investigation was conducted by Deputy Dan Rittenhouse, Deputy Ross Gerace, Deputy Steph Schroeder and Deputy Mike Yencer.

Kelly M. Zwolinski, 34, of Broadway Road, Darien, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property, 4th, and resisting arrest. Zwolinski was identified as a suspect in possession of a stolen horse saddle that was taken from a farm in Niagara County and an arrest warrant was issued. When Deputy Kevin McCarthy and Investigator William Ferrando attempted to place Zwolinski under arrest, she allegedly resisted arrest.

Darlene Ann Kingdollar, 51, of South Pearl Street, Oakfield, is charged with petit larceny. Kingdollar is accused of entering the 7-Eleven store in Oakfield while intoxicated and after she was denied the purchase of alcohol, she allegedly left the store with a can of beer without paying for it.

Bruce J. Brade, 33, of Galloway Road, Batavia, is charged with stalking, 4th, and criminal contempt, 2nd. Brade allegedly violated an order of protection.

Mark J. Price, 37, Township Road, Ashland, Ohio, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear for an alleged traffic violation in Batavia City Court. Price was aprehended during a traffic stop in the Village of Attica. Price was issued an appearance ticket.

Jeffrey A. Pionessa, 32, of Glenwood Drive, Attica, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and speeding in zone. Pionessa was stopped at 2:30 a.m. Sunday on Law Street, Batavia, by Officer Arick Perkins. Pionessa allegedly had a BAC of .11.

A 17-year-old resident of Trumbull Parkway, Batavia is charged with criminal mischief, 4th, and harassment, 2nd. The youth is accused of damaging the mobile phone charger of another person by throwing it against a wall and grabbing the arm of the alleged victim and pushing the person's face.

John K. Rolls, 34, of Mill Street, Batavia, is charged with two counts of forcible touching. Rolls is accused of forcibly touching a 17-year-old girl on Jan. 7. Rolls is incarcerated in the Genesee county Jail on an unrelated matter and was issued an appearance ticket.

Brad Strzelecki, 19, of Hunter Street, Bergen, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Strzelecki was reported at a location on Bank Street at 10:01 a.m. Jan. 13 when he was allegedly found in possession of marijuana by Officer Eric Foels.

Rodeny Lowell McKenzie, 49, of Weaver Street, Buffalo, is charged with petit larceny. McKenzie was located by Transit Police in Buffalo during a check-the-welfare interview and identified as a warrant suspect for allegedly stealing items from Kmart on Dec. 12.

Bryant William Hardtner, 28, of State Street Road, Batavia, is charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle. Hardtner is accused of taking a vehicle Sunday without the owner's consent.

Kimberly Diane Ribbeck, 27, of Genesee Street, Corfu, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, driving a vehicle with obstructed vision and no or inadequate plate light. Ribbeck was stopped at 2:33 a.m. Sunday on Route 77, Pembroke, by Deputy Joseph Corona.

Michael Gerald Pernicano, 21, of Lake Road, Holley, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, failure to signal and no plate light. Pernicano was stopped at 2:29 a.m. Saturday on North Byron Road, Byron, by Deputy Joseph Corona.

Lena Marie Evans, 26, of Ross Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny, two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance and possession of a hypodermic instrument. Evans was arrested for allegedly shoplifting at Kmart by Deputy Andrew Hale.

Carey Anthony Bedell III, 18, of Lehigh Avenue, Rochester, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Bedell was arrested on Clinton Street Road, Byron, at 9:43 p.m. Friday.

Matthew R. Smith, 21, of Basom, is charged with forcible touching. Smith was arrested by State Police for an alleged incident reported at noon Thursday.

Mark A. Allison, 52, of Lockport, is charged with felony DWI and felony driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Allison was arrested by State Police following the report at 9:29 p.m. Thursday of a two-car accident at 372 Bloomingdale Road, Basom. One person was injured. The driver of the other vehicle was Alexander Shirira, 56, of Buffalo. No other details released.

Friday, January 17, 2014 at 3:33 pm

Driver allegedly dozes off and strikes mailbox on Main Street in Corfu

post by Billie Owens in accidents, corfu, indian falls, pembroke

A car struck a mailbox at 1410 Main St. in Corfu, by the Holiday Hollow, and the driver is complaining of head pain. "He states he dozed off..." according to the dispatcher. There was air bag deployment. The car is off the roadway. The location is between Boyce and Alleghany roads. Pembroke and Indian Falls fire departments are responding along with medics.

UPDATE 2:38 p.m.: Pembroke command tells the Pembroke crew they can stand down. The vehicle involved is a white pickup truck.

UPDATE 2:45 p.m.: Law enforcement also responded. The Pembroke assignment is back in service. The driver is being taken to UMMC.

UPDATE 3 p.m.: The driver is a 52-year-old male with complaints of head and neck pain.

Tuesday, January 14, 2014 at 4:37 pm

Former court clerk in Corfu can avoid prison if she stays out of trouble for 11 months

post by Howard B. Owens in Brandi Watts, corfu, crime

In accordance with her plea agreement, Brandi Watts, the former Village of Corfu court clerk who stole more than $10,000 in court funds, was given 11 months to show she can stay out of trouble.

If she does, she will be sentenced Dec. 15 on a lesser included offense and serve a year on probation with the chance to have all charges dismissed.

Watts, who entered a guilty plea in October to one count of tampering with government records, a Class D felony, also paid $10,128.

The only drama, if you want to call it that, in court today was special prosecutor Donald O'Geen addressing a request by the Village of Corfu for additional restitution.

"There is claim for thousand and thousands of dollars more the Village of Corfu seeks," O'Geen said. "In my opinion the correct legal amount that the village can recover if there were a restitution hearing has been recovered. There's a lot of emotion and a lot of built up frustration and there are expenses they feel they shouldn't have to pay. I'm confident in the number, but I completely understand the frustration in the Village of Coruf."

Watts said nothing prior to Judge Robert C. Noonan ordering her back Dec. 15.

"If she violates the terms of probation, the probation department will notify me immediately and we'll be right back in here," Noonan said.

The case against Watts became a public controversy after the state comptroller's office released a report showing numerous financial irregularities in the village court's bookkeeping. For more than a year the village tried to pursue a case against Watts and her father and former boss in the village court, former justice Robert Alexander. 

As the judicial review commissions proceedings dragged on and no, the village tried to recover funds and get a criminal case to move forward.

In the process, the village incurred thousands of dollars in legal expenses and that's the money the village would still like to have Watts pay in restitution.

O'Geen said he doesn't believe that money would be awarded to the village in a restitution hearing.

Alexander, who also served as the Town of Pembroke justice, has resigned from office and is barred from ever seeking a court position again. As part of the plea bargain, criminal charges against Alexander where dropped, which included coercion and official misconduct for allegedly harassing another court clerk.

Monday, January 13, 2014 at 10:32 am

Law and Order: Batavia man accused of identity theft

post by Howard B. Owens in batavia, byron, corfu, crime, elba, Le Roy, pembroke, Stafford

Bruce J. Brade, 33, of Galloway Road, Batavia, is charged with identify theft, 2nd, and grand larceny, 4th. Brade is accused of fraudulent use of a debit card. Brade allegedly used the card to purchase items over the Internet. Following arraignment in Batavia City Court, Brade was released under supervision of Genesee Justice.

Douglas Robert Brown, 45, of South Main Street, Elba, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon, 4th. Brown was arrested following an investigation into a complaint of an irate truck driver who made a delivery to Automotive Corp., Inc. Brown was allegedly found in possession of a billy club.

Thomas James Rose, 18, of Ford Road, Elba, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument, criminal use of drug paraphernalia and unlawful possession of marijuana. Rose was found to allegedly possess drugs and paraphernalia during an investigation by Deputy Joseph Corona and Deputy Howard Carlson of an incident at a residence in Byron at 2:30 a.m., Saturday.

Arthur Mack Osborne, 47, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd. Osborne is accused of violating a complete stay away order by going to the residence of the protected person and being in contact with that person.

Paul Joseph Kirch, 27, of Angling Road, Corfu, was arrested on a warrant out of the Town of Amherst related to a disorderly conduct charge. Kirch was located when a deputy checked on a vehicle parked on the shoulder of a roadway. Upon investigation, Kirch was identified as a suspect with an active arrest warrant.

Cynthia Louise Reschke, 50, of Transit Road, Stafford, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, failure to keep right, moving from lane unsafely. Reschke was stopped at 1:36 a.m. Sunday on Morganville Road, Stafford, by Deputy Joseph Corona.

Stephen A. Getty, 43, of Gilbert Street, Le Roy, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, moving from lane unsafely and drinking alcohol in a motor vehicle on a highway. Getty was stopped at 5:11 p.m. Friday on Main Road, Pembroke, by Deputy Kevin McCarthy.

Louis Levon Wooden, 28, of Salina Street, Rochester, is charged with petit larceny. Wooden is accused of shoplifting at Walmart. Also charged with petit larceny is Tymekia T. Gaskin, 39, of Champlain Street, Rochester.

Ann Lee Cox, 42, of Main Street, Attica, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, driving while ability impaired by drugs, driving while ability impaired by combined drugs and moving from lane unsafely. Cox was arrested following an investigation by Deputy Kevin McCarthy into a single-car accident on Route 98, Alexander, at 4:22 a.m. on Oct. 20.

Emily Grace Lemen, 19, of Lake Street, Le Roy, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .18 or greater and moving from lane unsafely. Lemen was allegedly driving a vehicle at 4 p.m. on Jan. 6 that went down an embankment at the 490 off-ramp at Route 19. The accident was investigated by Deputy Matthew Butler.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014 at 11:53 pm

Truck drivers assist deputy being dragged by suspect's car

post by Howard B. Owens in corfu, crime, pembroke
Scott Kopper

A truck driver and a tow truck operator came to the aid of a deputy today after a criminal suspect allegedly trapped the deputy's arm in a rolled up window and dragged the deputy with his car as the suspect tried to drive away.

The truck drivers used their vehicles to pin the suspect's car against a snow bank, giving Deputy Brian Thompson a chance to break the window and subdue the suspect.

Taken into custody was Scott A. Kopper, 36, of East Main Street, Corfu.

The incident began at 11:35 a.m. when Thompson was dispatched to Route 33 in Pembroke to check on a car reported off the road.

Thompson, who has had prior contact with Kopper, recognized the driver and after checking with dispatchers, learned Kopper was wanted by NYS Parole.

Kopper allegedly refused to exit his vehicle, despite numerous requests by Thompson.

When Thompson attempted to stop Kopper from leaving the scene -- his car had been extricated from the snow bank by the tow truck driver -- Kopper allegedly rolled up his window, trapping Thompson's arm.

A witness said Kopper then tried to drive away, dragging Thompson about 100 feet.

With the vehicle rendered immobile, the two truck drivers assisted Thompson in subduing Kopper.

Thompson suffered bruising and minor cuts and scrapes, but escaped serious injury.

Kopper was charged with two counts of assault in the second degree. Additional charges are pending. Kopper was jailed on $25,000 bail.

Kopper is the former owner of WNY Blacktop Sealers.

Wednesday, January 8, 2014 at 1:35 pm

Corfu / Pembroke Winter Fest set for Jan. 25

post by Billie Owens in corfu, pembroke

Press release:

CORFU / PEMBROKE WINTER FEST 2014 is Saturday, Jan. 25 from noon – 8 p.m.

This is Western Genesee County’s premier winter celebration. It's in the Village of Corfu, 116 E. Main St., Corfu. Sponsored by GO ART! and NYSA.

(See * for new this year)

Vendors / artists / crafts

  1. Keating Metal Spinning*
  2. Sweet Dream Maple Farm*
  3. The Artisans at North Street*
  4. Country Treasures*
  5. Garbecks Creek*
  6. Harper Hill Farm*
  7. Heaven’s Gate Floral & Gifts*
  8. Wishful Thinking*
  9. Kozy Kabin*
  10. Kitty Krazed Kat Treats*
  11. Pembroke Wood Turners*
  12. Terkel Photography*        

Youth Groups

  1. Boy Scout Troop 6066
  2. Boy Scout Pack 6066
  3. Dollars for Scholars
  4. PHS Class of 2015
  5. National Honor Society 
  6. PHS Class of 2014
  7. Girl Scouts 42110
  8. PYA Cheerleaders
  9. PHS Cheerleaders
  10. Pembroke Youth Association

Non-Profits / Government

  1. Corfu Free Library
  2. VFW 9000
  3. Community Information: Gen Co. Office for the Aging & Gen Co. Citizens Corps Council* / ARC* / Gen Co. DMV & Clerk * / Gen Co. Health Dept.* / SAGE* / NYS Public Service Commission* / Ready.Gov* Donations for PSD-area Food Pantries get door prize drawing tickets
  4. Volunteers for Animals* -- donors of dog & cat food get door prize drawing tickets for the Emergency First Aid Kit for Pets* and other goodies
  5. Indian Falls Methodist Church
  6. Cost of Freedom Tribute  VFW #626*
  7. Kiwanis of Corfu-Pembroke-Darien

Activities & Displays

  1. Skyhunters Birds of Prey*
  2. Ice Rink  -- outside
  3. Corfu Fire Department
  4. Historian Al Starkweather “Recreation in Pembroke Throughout the Years”*
  5. Community Band – Noon to 2 p.m. in the tent
  6. Larry Kohorst – Magic show 2:30 to 4 p.m. in the tent
  7. Dance Inferno – 5 to 8 p.m. in the tent
  8. Genesee Co. – our new Sheriff's K-9 "Destro" and Deputy Christopher Erion – outside 3:30 p.m.
  9. Genesee Co. Sheriff -- Safe Child ID – noon to 3 p.m.
  10. NYS Troopers
  11. DJs & sound systems: Biggs Sound & Entertainment and Dan Beal

And more to come!

Thursday, December 26, 2013 at 10:47 am

Law and Order: Report of erratic driving, minor accident lead to arrest

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

Terry Irene Luczak, 63, of North Spruce Street, Batavia, is charged with DWAI-Drugs and possession of a controlled substance outside of original container. Luczak's vehicle was observed allegedly driving erratically in the City of Batavia and was followed to Target, where the vehicle was reportedly seen striking a handicapped sign in the Target parking lot at 4:07 p.m., Monday. Luczak was arrested following an investigation by Deputy Andrew Hale.

Jenea Marie MacLeod, 29, of Sliker Road, Corfu, is charged with petit larceny. MacLeod is accused of shoplifting at Walmart.

Shannon Marie Denison, 30, of Main Street, Attica, is charged with petit larceny. Denison is accused of shoplifting at Kmart.

Kathleen E. Gonzalez, 51, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Gonzalez is accused of shoplifting $30.12 in merchandise from Kmart.

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