Online News. Community Views.

>> Download <<
The Batavian Mobile
Droid | iPhone

Recent comments

Community Sponsors


October 28, 2016 - 1:38pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in news, crime, batavia.

via our news partner, 13WHAM (note this is an edit from the broadcast version to replace video we can't use on The Batavian with our own photos).

October 27, 2016 - 4:48pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, crime, news.

Robert S. Sojda, 52, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. At 10:52 p.m. on Oct. 25 Batavia Police responded to the Speedway convenience store at 204 W. Main St. for the report of a larceny. While police were on scene, Sojda returned to the store and he was taken into custody. He allegedly stole a Mike's Harder Lemonade by placing the can inside his sweatshirt prior to leaving the Speedway. He was issued an appearance ticket for Nov. 1 in City Court. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Erick Perkins.

Dakota O. Irvin, 25, of Ross Street, Batavia, turned himself into Batavia Police headquarters Oct. 24 on a bench warrant after he failed to appear in City Court for a traffic ticket issued Oct. 19 for third-degree aggravated unlicensed operator. He was jailed on $500 bail and was due in City Court this afternoon. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins.

Garrett J. Ditzel, 22, no permanent address, of Batavia, is charged with failing to appear after an appearance ticket was served. Ditzel had an active arrest warrant out of City of Batavia for failing to answer an appearance ticker for a petit larceny charge. He allegedly stole two jackets from JCPenney and he was arrested Oct. 6. Ditzel is currently incarcerated in Genesee County Jail and was due in court Oct. 25. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Nicole Salamone, assisted by Officer James DeFreze.

October 27, 2016 - 4:22pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, news, Announcements, Halloween, trick or treating.

Press release from City of Batavia Police Department:

SUBJECT: Halloween Trick or Treating

DATE / TIME OF OCCURENCE: Monday, Oct. 31 from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m.

If you plan on going door to door make sure you are properly supervised by a parent or responsible adult.

Do not go to homes where the porch lights are off

Use a flashlight to let drivers see you, and see where you are going.

To avoid tripping or injury don't wear costumes that are loose fitting and too long.

Don't wear masks that obscure your vision, make up is a good alternative to masks.

Wear reflective, bright colors to be seen by drivers after dark.

Walk on the sidewalks, or as near to the curb as possible if there are no sidewalks.

Observe safety rules when crossing or walking on the streets, and stay clear of traffic.

Parents should inspect any treats before you eat them!

The Batavia Police HIGHLY RECOMMEND as an alternative to going door to door, attend one of the Halloween events sponsored by local businesses.

Choose costumes that are marked flame retardant.

Make props such as magic wands and swords out of cardboard, rather than metal or wood.

Give and accept wrapped or packaged candy only.

Go out in daylight and carry a flashlight in case of delay.

Have children stay within their neighborhood; only visit homes you know.

All “Trick or Treating” shall be completed by 9 p.m.


October 27, 2016 - 4:03pm
posted by Billie Owens in business, Announcements, batavia, Le Roy, news.

Press release:

Tops Friendly Markets, a leading full-service grocery retailer in New York, northern Pennsylvania, western Vermont, and north central Massachusetts announced today that the company will offer military personnel and their immediate families an 11-percent discount off of their grocery bill this Veterans Day.

On Friday, Nov. 11, Tops Markets will honor an 11-percent discount off of a total order to all veterans and immediate family members in the same household, who shop at any Tops location.  Customers should present proof of service that they, or an immediate family member are a U.S. Veteran, active duty, reserve or retired military personnel to automatically receive an 11-percent discount off of their total purchase that day.

In Genesee County, there are two Tops locations: 390 W. Main St. in Batavia and 128 W. Main St., Le Roy.

“The respect and gratitude we have for the people who serve and have served in the military is immeasurable, and for that we are forever grateful,” said Frank Curci, Tops chairman and chief executive officer. “We wanted to support local military personnel by giving back to our associates and customers who have courageously defended our country and made many sacrifices through their military service.”

Tops is a longtime supporter of military associates and customers. The company’s actions include support of the American Veterans Tribute Traveling Wall, Honor Flight Missions, sending care packages for troops serving domestically and overseas, VA hospital visits, and participation in veteran job fairs, parades and expos.

October 27, 2016 - 11:39am
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, news, scanner.

City police are responding to Walnut Street for a property dispute. A caller reports a babysitter is "refusing to return diapers and blankets."

October 27, 2016 - 11:23am
posted by Billie Owens in accidents, batavia, news.

A two-vehicle accident, possibly a head-on collision, is reported at Richmond Avenue and Oak Street. Injuries are reported and it is blocking traffic. City police, Mercy medics and firefighters are on scene.

UPDATE 11:26 a.m.: Richmond Avenue is shut down "up to North Lyon Street from Oak Street."

UPDATE 11:35 a.m.: This was a T-bone accident. One driver is not injured; the other complained of head and neck pain and was transported to the hospital for evaluation.

UPDATE 11:40 a.m.: Two flatbed tow trucks are called to the scene.

UPDATE 11:49 a.m.: The road is reopened.

October 27, 2016 - 11:13am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, Le Roy, news.


A convicted sexual predator has been arrested and accused of sexual contact with a child.

Marlek E. Holmes, 42, of Batavia, is being held without bail after being arraigned in County Court on an 11-count grand jury indictment.

The assaults allegedly occurred in the City of Batavia and Village of Le Roy from 2010 to 2015.

He is charged with two counts of predatory sexual assault, two counts of predatory sexual assault against a child, two counts of incest in the first degree, sexual abuse in the first degree, rape in the third degree, criminal sexual abuse in the third degree and two counts of incest in the third degree.

Holmes has previously been arrested locally on charges of failure to register a change of address as a Level 3 sexual offender and of sending indecent texts to a child.

October 27, 2016 - 8:49am
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, fire, news.

The smell of something electrical burning greeted an employee upon opening the Dollar General Store on East Main Street in Batavia a few minutes ago. The worker called dispatch and city firefighters just arrived and are investigating.

UPDATE 8:54 a.m.: Command reports no sign of smoke or fire; investigation is continuing.

October 26, 2016 - 7:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in State Street Road, fire, crime, batavia, news.


Heather Ace was hanging out at a friend's house drinking Four Loko* the night of May 20 when her mother tried to call her and tell her that her house on Bank Street Road was on fire, according to a statement Ace gave to investigators.

When Ace didn't answer the phone, her mother sent her a text message, according to a statement by Tracy Ace, that read, "Answer your f---ing phone."

Heather answered on the next ring.

According to Heather's friend, Ashki Zajaczkowski, Heather dropped the phone and started screaming.

Zajaczkowski drove Heather to 8157 State Street Road, Batavia, where she lived with her three boys, including two fraternal twins, Micah and Michael Gard, and before Zajaczkowski would even stop the car, Heather was running from the car hysterically. 

The evening wasn't supposed to go as it did, according to the statements. Heather Ace was planning to go to the movies with Zajaczkowski and other friends, but as afternoon turned to evening, nobody really felt like heading out of town.

Ace put her two children to bed sometime between 8 and 8:30 p.m. and then headed over to a friend's house. She smoked some weed and then went to the Speedway and bought a can of Four Loko and some water before heading over to Zajaczkowski's house.

The two boys were locked in their room, with a lock on the kitchen side of the door put in place after the boys wandered out of the house over to the neighboring house, the residence of their grandparents.

When firefighters arrived that night, they also found the door leading into the apartment kitchen locked. Heather Ace said in her statement, she didn't know how the door became locked. She said she didn't lock it before leaving the house. Tracy Ace said it wasn't Heather's practice to lock the door because her husband needed access to the basement, where he stored his tools.

The cause of the fire has never been determined.

Micah and Michael died in the fire and Heather Ace has been charged with endangering the welfare of a child.

She appeared in Town of Batavia Court yesterday and entered a not guilty plea.

She is represented by public defender Jerry Ader, who said yesterday he had not yet had a chance to discuss the case with his client.

Photo: Previously unpublished, officers dealing with distraught people at the scene of the fire.

*Four Loko is a flavored, malted alcoholic beverage.

October 26, 2016 - 4:34pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, batavia, Announcements, business, plumbers.

Press release from the city Department of Public Works:

The City of Batavia is pleased to announce that Ryan Toal, Anthony Cellino, Robert Marvin and Erich Postler have passed the necessary exam and successfully met the requirements to become licensed plumbers in the City of Batavia.

October 26, 2016 - 1:13pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, Stafford, Le Roy, batavia.

Cynthia May Mack, 49, of Pearl Street Road, Batavia, is charged with harassment and false personation. Following the investigation into a domestic incident at 10:07 a.m. on Oct. 21 on East Main Road, Le Roy, Mack was arrested after allegedly punching an individual in the face while in presence of law enforcment, and she allegedly provided them with a false name. She was put in jail and is due in Le Roy Town Court on Oct. 27. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Rachel Diehl.

Danielle Marie Stewart, 18, of East Main Road, Stafford, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Following the investigation at 12:23 a.m. on Oct. 25 into a suspicious condition in a parking lot on Main Road in the Town of Stafford, Stewart was allegedly found to be in possession of marijuana. She was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Town of Stafford Court on Nov. 15. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Eric Meyer.

October 26, 2016 - 11:04am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, batavia.


At 84-years-old, soon to be 85, Laura Viehdeffer is likely the oldest person to ever plead guilty to a drug sales charge.

Viehdeffer, a resident of West Main Street, Batavia, was arrested May 25 for two incidents nearly a year before when she sold hydrocodone, which she had a prescription for, to an agent of the Local Drug Task Force. She entered a guilty plea in August to one count of criminal sale of a controlled substance.

She was sentenced yesterday to five years probation by Interim Judge Michael Pietruzska.

Defense attorney Jamie Welch argued that given his client's lack of criminal record and advanced age, a conditional discharge (meaning the conviction is wiped clean if she stayed out of trouble for six months) was the most appropriate sentence.

 “This is unlike the 20-, 30- or 40-year-old defendants facing these charges,” Welch said.

Pietruzska made no comment on Welch's argument before sentencing Viehdeffer.

Viehdeffer made no statement prior to being sentenced.

Photo and info via our news partner, WBTA.

October 26, 2016 - 10:02am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Middle School, batavia, news.

Batavia Middle School was on lockdown for a brief time this morning after a caller reported hearing a gunshot a couple of blocks from the school.

The report turned out to be unfounded and the school was quickly taken off of lockdown.

October 25, 2016 - 12:43pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Genesee Cancer Assistance, batavia, news.


Genesee Cancer Assistance has opened up an office inside United Memorial Medical Center, next to the Lipson Cancer Center, to help the agency better serve its clients. 

"We offer financial assistance for medical co-pays, reimbursement of travel expenses and any medical-related expenses not covered by insurance," said Sue Underwood, executive director. "The patients can use the money for whatever they may need related to their treatment."

Via our news partner, WBTA.

October 25, 2016 - 10:21am
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCEDC, business, batavia, news.

Press release:

The Board of Directors of the Genesee County Economic Development Center (GCEDC) will consider finalizing an application for assistance from Mega Properties. The agency also will consider accepting an application for assistance from TJ Sheehan, a Massachusetts-based wholesaler at the agency’s Oct. 27 meeting.

Mega Properties is once again expanding its distribution operations in the Town of Batavia on behalf of Brantford, Ontario, Canada-based Koolatron Corporation. Mega Properties is seeking incentives for a build out of 25,000 square feet at its current warehouse at Gateway I. The expansion would increase the building to 70,000 square feet on three acres and would create six new jobs.

The GCEDC Board also will vote on whether to accept an application from Massachusetts-based wholesaler TJ Sheehan in which the company proposes converting a former 37,500-square-foot Cargill facility in Alexander to a refrigerated beverage distribution center. If the board votes to accept the application, there will be a public hearing since the incentives total more than $100,000.

The GCEDC board meeting will be held at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 27. The meeting will be at the MedTech Center, across from Genesee Community College, on the first floor at the Innovation Center, Suite 107. All board meetings are open to the public.

October 24, 2016 - 2:29pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news.


The former Batavia mother who is accused of leaving her two young children home alone before a fire broke out, killing both little boys, made her first court appearance today on charges of endangering the welfare of a child; she entered a not guilty plea.

Public Defender Jerry Ader told Justice Micheal Cleveland that he had not yet been able to meet with his client and asked that her case be continued to 10:30 a.m., Nov. 21.

Ace made no statement during the short proceeding.

Investigators have not said where they believe Ace went the night of May 20, allegedly leaving her 2-year-old twins, Micah and Michael Gard, unsupervised at 8157 State Street Road, Batavia.

The children were inside their bedroom at the residence at the time. The investigation determined that the fire originated either inside of, or in close proximity to, the children's bedroom. The cause of the fire remains undetermined.

Ace, out of jail on her own recognizance, was given revised release orders. Cleveland ordered her to report for supervision to Genesee Justice.

ADA Melissa Cianfrini asked Cleveland to order Ace undergo alcohol evaluation, but Cleveland's order specified only that she not consume alcohol or non-prescription drugs while the case is pending.

Ace appeared in court accompanied by several friends and family members.

October 24, 2016 - 12:47pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, news, yard waste, Announcements.

Press release:

Citywide leaf collection will begin Monday, Oct. 31 and continue through Friday, Dec. 2.

Residents of the following streets can rake to the parkway, but do not place in the street:

  • Clinton Street
  • Oak Street
  • Main Street (including East and West Main Street)
  • Pearl Street
  • South Main Street (between Oak Street and Walnut Street)
  • Walnut Street
  • Richmond Ave (between Oak Street and Prospect Avenue.

If your street has a route number (i.e. Route 5, Route 33, Route 63 and Route 98), then please keep leaves out of the roadway.

All other streets are asked to rake leaves to the curb line, taking care not to block storm drainage structures/ catch basins.

Leaf operations typically have one crew on the Southside beginning on River Street, moving East in areas South of Main Street; and second crew on the Northside will work from Grandview Terrace moving west, north of Main Street. A third crew will work using a vacuum along main roads and numbered routes. It takes about two weeks to go through the entire city.

Any resident with leaves can also bring them to the Yard Waste Station on Law Street until it closes for the season on Saturday, Dec. 3.

Beginning Nov. 7th, the hours of the Yard Waste Station operation will be adjusted to 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Saturday.


  • Leaf piles must be clear of sticks and other debris;
  • Grass clippings, flower potting material, branches, pumpkins and gourds cannot be picked up and residents are encouraged to bring those items to the Yard Waste Station;
  • Leaves should not block traffic;
  • Leaves should not be piled near intersection corners; this causes sight issues for motorist/ bicyclists/ pedestrians;
  • Keep leaf piles clear of drainage ways and catch basins; blocked drainage leads to localized flooding;
  • Leaves should not be piled around mailboxes, power poles, fences, fire hydrants or other obstacles; 
  • Do not park on leaf piles; the heat from a vehicle exhaust system could start a fire.
October 24, 2016 - 12:37pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, batavia, corfu, bergen.

Bryan D. Bates, 37, of West Main Street, is charged with second-degree burglary, first-degree coercion, second-degree harassment, obstruction of government administration, and resisting arrest. Bates was arrested at 6:35 a.m. on Oct 20 on Liberty Street, Batavia, following a domestic dispute. Bates allegedly unlawfully entered the victim's residence with the intent to commit a crime. He then allegedly became involved in a physical disturbance with the victim. When confronted by police, Bates fled until he was captured by poluce, at which time he allegedly resisted arrest. He was arraigned in City Court and jailed without bail. He is due in court Oct. 27. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Flanagan, assisted by Officer Felicia DeGroot.

Paris J. McCrimmon, 24, of South Swan Street, Batavia, is charged with first-degree coercion, second-degree menacing, endangering the welfare of a child, and obstruction of governmental administration. McCrimmon was arrested at 9:20 p.m. on Oct. 21 on South Swan Street following a domestic dispute. The defendant was  arraigned in City Court and jailed without bail. The defendant is due in City Court this afternoon. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Flanagan, assisted by Officer Eric Foels.

Samantha Tando, 36, of Penfield Road, Penfield, is charged with second-degree harassment. She was arrested and processed on location at 11:30 p.m. on Oct. 17 following a physical domestic incident at Batavia Downs where it was alleged that she struck a male across the head. She was released on an appearance ticket and is due in City Court on Oct. 25. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Felicia DeGroot.

Tyrone A. Brooks, 24, of Tibbits Road, Medina, is charged with second-degree harassment. At 8:42 p.m. on Oct. 16, Batavia Police responded to the Genesee County Nursing Home on Bank Street for the report of a male refusing to leave. While entering the elevator, Brooks allegedly pushed an employee with his shoulder. He was subsequently arrested and arraigned in City Court. He was jailed on $500 bail and was due in City Court on Oct. 17. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Eric Foels.

Trey G. Henderson, 24, of Jackson Street, Batavia, was arrested at 12:55 a.m. on Oct. 22 as the result of an investigation into an incident that occurred a short time earlier at T.F. Brown's restaurant in Batavia. He is charged with second-degree harassment. He was processed, then released with an appearance ticket returnable to City Court on Oct. 25. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Eric Foels, assisted by Officer Eric Bolles.

Jamie J. Corrieri, 52, of Ellicott Street, Batavia, is charged with DWI, speeding, refusal to take a breath test and driving in the center lane. Corrieri was arrested at 1:39 a.m. on Oct. 21 as the result of a traffic stop on Ellicott Street a short time earlier. The defendant was arraigned at 6:30 a.m. in City Court, then jailed on $1,000 cash or bond. Corrieri was due in City Court to answer the charges on Oct. 21. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Eric Foels, assisted by Officer Eric Bolles.

Christopher Lambert, 36, of Jackson Street, Batavia, is charged with possession of a hypodermic instrument and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree. At 10:40 p.m. on Jackson Street, Lambert was allegedly found in possession of a hypodermic needle and heroin. He was issued an appearance ticket for Oct. 25 in City Court. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jamie Givens.

Dakota Ryan Lee White, 18, of South Lake Avenue, Bergen, is charged with petit larceny. The defendant was arrested at noon on Sept. 29 on Buffalo Road in Bergen after an investigation revealed he allegedly took merchandise from a business in the Town of Bergen during the course of his employment. He was issued an appearance ticket for Bergen Town Court on Nov. 2. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Christopher Erion.

Adrienne F. Yocina, 35, of Alleghany Road, Corfu, is charged with petit larceny. Yocina was arrested at 4:29 p.m. on Oct. 18 after an investigation at a place of business on Ellicott Street in Batavia. Yocina allegedly stole money from the business over the period of a month by making false returns. Yocina was issued an appearance ticket for Oct. 25 in City Court. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Nicole Salamone, assisted by Officer Chad Richards.

Frank Edward Finnin, 50, of Raymond Avenue, Batavia, was arrested at noon on Oct. 12 on a warrant issued by Genesee County Court for alleged violation of felony probation. He was transported to Genesee County Jail by the Probation Department and was due in County Court this monring. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Richard Schildwaster.

Ivan Nicolivich Molodkin, 33, of Wellington Avenue, Rochester, was arrested on an outstanding bench warrant  after failing to appear at Batavia City Court. He was transported to City Court, arraigned and released on his own recognizance. He was due in court on April 27 in regard to an unspecified incident which occurred on July 2, 2015, on Main Street in Batavia. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Kevin DeFelice.

Richard E. Stafford, 76, of Orange Grove Drive, Batavia, was arrested on a bench warrant for failing to appear in City Court on a ticket for aggravated unlicensed operation. He was issued an appearance ticket for this afternoon in City Court. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

October 24, 2016 - 11:21am
posted by Howard B. Owens in power outage, National Grid, batavia, news.

There is a power outage in Batavia that covers an area north of East Main Street, from about Bank Street to just east of Clinton Street stretching north in a triangle with the tip on Bank Street Road in East Elba.

About 2,400 National Grid customers are affected.

The cause of the outage is not available at this time and emergency dispatchers are not aware of the cause.

National Grid is giving an estimated time of power restoration of 12:45 p.m.

UPDATE 11:59 p.m.: Steve Brady, spokesman for National Grid, said the cause it not known at this time. A crew is at the substation.  He will provide more information when it's available.

UPDATE 1:42 p.m.: From Steve Brady: "All customers were restored at 12:54 through some switching, but root cause of the outage is still unclear.  There may have been a fuse problem in the station, but crews are still looking at it."

UPDATE 2:03 p.m.: Batavia High School Principal Scott Wilson sent parents/guardians a voice message this afternoon about the power outage. He said power was reported out at 10:55 a.m. and it was restored at 12:30 p.m. and that school officials were in contact with National Grid. The high school remained open throughout the power outage. Backup generators were used and lighting was in place for bathrooms, and the students were provided a hot lunch. They took advantage of natural lighting and students were directed to sit in the atrium and gymnasium. Having Chrome book computers during a power outage was noted as a "new benefit" of the devices, enabling instruction to continue with a minimum of disruption. Wilson said afternoon instruction for BOCES students has been cancelled; students were directed to the library and could be dismissed from there with parental consent. Anyone with questions is asked to call 343-2480, ext. 2000.

October 23, 2016 - 1:39pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, news.


Several years ago, dispatcher James Tripp and then Batavia PD Lt. Jim Henning got to talking one day about how cool it would be to have replicas of Batavia patrol vehicles made, and Tripp, being a bit of a collector of fire and police memorabilia, he started researching how to get it done.

Employed by both the Sheriff's Office and Batavia PD, Tripp began with the idea of getting replica patrol vehicles for both agencies. 

For that batch, he found a company in California that could make them.

About five years later, both agencies had replaced most of their old vehicles and members of both agencies were interested in updated models. He and Henning discussed the options and Henning suggested VSP graphics in Buffalo; the company, at the time, did the decals for Batavia's patrol vehicles. 

That set of vehicles was created in 2010. 

VSP was unable to handle the workload this year, so Tripp turned to Vinyl Sticks, with an office in Batavia, and Vinyl Sticks was willing to take on the job in between their larger jobs. 

Trip ordered the blank 1/24 scale of the SUV used by both departments and the first batch was recently completed.

"These replicas as I indicated are not mass produced and each car's decals are manually applied, which can be a time-consuming task," Tripp said.  

The cars are sold to members of both agencies looking for a keepsake and conversation piece. They can be customized with the officer's badge number on the top of the roof and license plate number. 

Tripp said these cars are not sold at a profit. 

"One other footnote is the City of Batavia replicas (and most common folk would not even notice) have the City of Batavia Police Department special 100-year century of service sticker on the back door of the model, just like the real patrol vehicles, which makes them even more unique," Tripp said.

"I would just add it is one of those things likes arts and crafts I guess that you're either into it or not," Tripp said. "My feelings are, for me anyway, it is a sense of pride for me to display and be proud of what I have done and who I have worked for most of my adult life. Serving and working with emergency services to me has been a blessing for me and I am honored that I have had that opportuinty to do just that in this community. While I am semi-retired, I still enjoy walking in the door of both agencies to represent both agencies to the best of my ability. This project for me is part of that pride."



Subscribe to



Copyright © 2008-2016 The Batavian. Some Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service
Original content available for non-commercial use under a Creative Commons license.
Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

blue button