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September 26, 2016 - 11:35am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, elba, Oakfield, batavia, byron, Alabama, Alexander..

Somebody is stealing batteries from large trucks, buses, and heavy equipment and the Genesee County Sheriff's Office is looking for the public's help in identifying the culprit.

These are known as Type 31 batteries. They retail for as much as $300 and have resale and recycling value.

Investigators say the series of thefts seem confined to Genesee County, particularly in Elba, Oakfield, Batavia, Byron, Alabama and Alexander.

The Sheriff's Office has received more than a dozen complaints of such thefts, which occur overnight.

Anyone with information that may pertain to the case can call (585) 343-5000.

September 16, 2016 - 2:38pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, batavia, byron.

Matthew Arthur Harder, 19, of Geddes Street, Holley, is charged with fourth degree criminal mischief. Harder was arrested following an investigation into damaged property in the parking lot of Genesee Community College at 9:15 a.m. on Sept. 9. He was arraigned on Sept. 15 in Town of Batavia Court and is to appear there at a later date. He was also issued an Order of Protection to stay away from the victim whose property was damaged. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Ryan DeLong.

Richard Todd Harter, 40, of Townline Road, Byron, is charged with second-degree harassment. On Sept. 15, Harter was arrested on a bench warrant for the charge, out of Holley, and turned over to Holley PD. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Chad Cummings.

September 11, 2016 - 11:51am
posted by Billie Owens in news, elba, byron.

A caller to dispatch believes he may have discovered the vehicle involved in a hit-and-run accident shortly after 10:30 Saturday morning on Transit Road in Byron.

Law enforcement units are responding to Spoil Bank Road in Elba, in the mucklands, where the caller found a vehicle well off the roadway with heavy front-end damage. 

There were no serious injuries in the accident, which resulted in one vehicle rolling over multiple times and landing on its side.

For initial report click here.

September 10, 2016 - 10:44am
posted by Billie Owens in accident, byron, news.

A rollover accident is reported at 6465 Transit Road in Byron. Occupants are out but "shaken up." Injuries, if any, unknown. The vehicle is on its side. Another vehicle involved left the scene. A first responder on scene says units can come in non-emergency mode.

UPDATE 10:45 a.m.: Law enforcement is on scene. Debris in the intersection will need to be cleaned up.

September 10, 2016 - 10:40am
posted by Billie Owens in accident, byron, news.

Two people are entrapped and injured following a rollover accident in Byron. A child may be a passenger. Extent of injuries unknown. The vehicle is on its side. The location is 

September 2, 2016 - 1:45pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, byron, bergen, batavia, oak field.

Paul William Tuttle, 45, of Sautell Road, Bergen, is charged with second-degree criminal trespass. At 2:26 this morning (Sept. 2), Tuttle allegedly entered someone's apartment on Byron Holley Road in Byron while being highly intoxicated. Tuttle allegedly urinated in the residence and helped himself to an ice cream cone from the resident's freezer. The resident allegedly located Tuttle enjoying the frozen treat on the couch. Because the Sheriff's Office could not reach a Byron judge, Tuttle was arraigned in the Town of Bergen Court and then released on his own recognizance. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Ryan Young, assisted by Sgt. John Baiocco.

Michael Norbert Jagodzinski, 56, of Fisher Drive, Rochester, is charged with driving with a BAC of more than .08 percent, and DWI -- first offense. Jagodzinski was found at 11:31 p.m. on Aug. 31 parked along Clinton Street Road in the Town of Bergen. He was allegedly found to be intoxicated at the time. He was issued tickets for Oct. 5 in Town of Bergen Court. The case was handled by Sheriff's Sgt. Eric Seppala.

Ann Marie Schlegel, 39, of Porter Road, Medina, is charged with failure to pay a fine for petit larceny. She was arrested by the Medina Police Department on an unrelated matter and then transferred to the Genesee County Sheriff's Office on a bench warrant for failing to pay a fine levied because of a petit larceny incident on May 19 on West Main Street in Batavia. She was arraigned and then jailed on $435 bail. The case was handled by Sheriff's Sgt. John Baiocco.

A 17-year-old resident of Bank Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. The subject was arrested at 5 p.m. on Aug. 31 on East Shelby Road in Oakfield for allegedly stealing an iPad Touch (valued at $150) from a female's residence. The subject was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Town of Oakfield Court on Sept. 16 to answer the charge. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Chad Minuto, assisted by Deputy Lonnie Nati.

September 1, 2016 - 2:13pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, batavia, news, corfu, byron.

Jonathan David Knauss, 22, of Depot Street, Corfu, is charged with sixth-degree conspiracy. He was arrested at 9 a.m. on Aug. 29 at the Genesee County Jail on West Main Street in Batavia for allegedly conspiring with at least one other person to commit a crime at the jail while being housed there. He was due in City Court this morning to answer the charge. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Christopher Parker, assisted by Genesee County Jail personnel.

Emily Elizabeth Dubois, 19, of Batavia Byron Road, Byron, is charged with sixth-degree conspiracy. She was arrested at 11:34 a.m. on Aug. 27 at the Genesee County Jail on West Main Street in Batavia for allegedly conspiring with an inmate to have another inmate commit a crime. She is due in City Court on Sept. 22 to answer the charge. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Christopher Parker, assisted by Genesee County Jail personnel.

A 17-year-old resident of South Main Street, Batavia, is charged with sixth-degree conspiracy. The subject was arrested at 9 a.m. on Aug. 29 at the Genesee County Jail on West Main Street in Batavia for allegedly conspiring with at least one other person to commit a crime at the jail while being housed there. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Christopher Parker, assisted by Genesee County Jail personnel.

August 30, 2016 - 4:35pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, byron, news.

In keeping with his plea deal, David O'Connor, 55, was sentenced to 12-and-a-half years in state prision for using .22-caliber rifle to shoot out the window of a deputy's patrol car while the deputy was sitting in it during a traffic stop in Byron.

O'Connor's appearance in County Court was brief. Other than telling Interim Judge Michael Pietruszka, "No thank you, your honor," when asked if he'd like to make a statement, O'Connor said nothing.

If the case had gone to trial, O'Connor could have been looking at a 40-year-to-life sentence, if the jury had convicted him.

"On the other hand, if he had only been convicted of reckless endangerment first (degree), the maximum would have been seven years," said District Attorney Lawrence Friedman.

The plea deal also includes five years post-release supervision.

Outside of court, Friedman said O'Connor had been drinking the day of the shooting and that he made some anti-law enforcement remarks when deputies entered his room on the second floor of the Byron Hotel.

O'Connor reportedly told authorities that he had been aiming at the tires of the patrol vehicle while Deputy Andrew Hale sat in it.

This case is one of a few recently with weapons involved, where local law enforcement has exercised restraint in the face of potential dire consequences. In this case, after Hale's window was shot out, the only thing officers knew at first was that there was a man on the second floor of a building with a rifle. Yet, they managed to take him into custody without more gun fire.

"I'm glad to say that in this county, we've had a number of incidents where the police have shown admirable and appropriate restraint in situations like that," Friedman said. 

August 30, 2016 - 2:37pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, batavia, byron, news.

Robert James Moulthrop, 48, Mechanic Street, Byron, is charged with: driving with a BAC of .08 percent or higher; DWI; aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd; and unlawful operation of an ATV on a public highway. At 8:18 p.m. on Aug. 27, the defendant was arrested on Byron Holley Road in Byron for allegedly driving while intoxicated. The arrest came after an investigation into a traffic offenses complaint of a dirt bike racing up and down Route 237 in the Town of Byron. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Ryan DeLong, assisted by Deputy Chad Cummings.

Corey D. Wilson, 20, of Elmwood Avenue, Buffalo, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. At 2 a.m. on Aug. 28, Batavia police conducted a traffic stop on Oak Street for a speed violation. A vehicle search was conducted and patrols found two male occupants allegedly in possession of two bags of marijuana. Wilson was issued an appearance ticket and he was also cited for the speed violation. Wilson is due in City Court on Sept. 13. The case was investigated by Batavia PoliceOfficer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Mitchell Cowen.

Maliq N. Douglas, 19, of New Jersey Avenue, Brooklyn, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Douglas was arrested at 2 a.m. on Aug. 28 on Oak Street in Batavia following a traffic stop. A vehicle search was conducted and patrols found two male occupants allegedly in possession of two bags of marijuana. Douglas was processed and released with an appearance ticket to City Court on Sept. 13. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Mitchell Cowen, assisted by Officer Arick Perkins.

August 25, 2016 - 2:10pm

Press release:

The Richter Family Foundation runs a program that gives books to children under age 5 through The Dolly Parton Imagination Library. It has been in operation since 2004 and the Oakfield-Alabama, Elba, Pavilion, and Pembroke school districts participate in the program. Recently, Byron-Bergen was added to the program.

Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library is a set of books beginning with the children’s classic "The Little Engine That Could." Each month a new, carefully selected age-appropriate book will be mailed in your child’s name directly to your home. Best of all it is a FREE GIFT! There is no cost or obligation to your family.

To be eligible in the Byron-Bergen School District, the child must live in the Byron-Bergen School District and must be between the ages of birth and his/her 5th birthday.

A committee representing the Byron-Bergen School District, the Byron and Bergen Communities, and the Byron-Bergen Library is partnering with the Richter Family Foundation to bring the Imagination Library to the children.

If your zip code is 14020, 14021, 14058, 14143 or 14482, the only way to register is to fill out a registration form and mail it to the address indicated on the form. The forms can be found at the Byron Town Hall, the Bergen Town and Village Offices, the Byron-Bergen Library, and the Byron-Bergen Elementary Office.  

If your zip code is 14416, 14422, 14428, 14429 or 14470, you may fill out and send in a registration form or, you may register online at www.imaginationlibrary.com by clicking on the box “register my child” and following the directions.

The Byron-Bergen Imagination Library Committee consists of: Nancy Bailey, librarian, Bergen Public Library; Anna Marie Barclay, Village of Bergen mayor and retired teacher; Donna Gerrard, Byron resident and a mom and grandmother; and Brian Meister, Byron-Bergen Elementary School principal.

They know that you, the parents and your children, will love the Imagination Library and encourage you to sign up your children today. A family can register several children within the household as long as they are under age 5.

August 14, 2016 - 10:59pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, byron, news.

A burned out socket in a bathroom is the likely cause of smoke in the residence at 6732 Byron Holley Road, Bryon.

The building, an apartment complex, is being evacuated.

Byron fire and South Byron, along with Town of Batavia's Fast Team dispatched. Elba to fill in at Byron's hall.

August 2, 2016 - 2:57pm
posted by Billie Owens in Milestones, lime rock, bergen, Le Roy, byron, elba, Pavilion.

(Submitted photos and information.)

The families of the late Baptist and Christina (Costa) Stefani, and Dominic and Johanna (Rigoni) Costa gathered for their 36th consecutive annual family reunion at  Mumford’s Freeman Park on Sunday, July 24, 2016. Both founding families made their homes in Lime Rock.

Christopher and Ann (Tracy) Publow, of Rochester, were this year’s event chairs.

After a cookout topped off with a buffet of cookies and ice cream novelties, there was a short business meeting. A review of family news since last year included:

  • Andrea Stefani, the daughter of Richard and Melanie Stefani, of Batavia, married Jacob Klos of Watertown on July 18, 2015;
  • Samantha Blake gave birth to our newest family member, Ryder Christopher Barclay, of Byron, on May 16, 2016;
  • Twenty-month-old Kate Aradine was the youngest in attendance. She is the daughter of Jeffrey and Bethany (Pocock) Aradine, of Bergen;
  • Bethany’s parents, Merlin and Marilyn (Costa) Pocock, of Bergen, were the longest married couple in attendance, at 41 years of wedded bliss;
  • Dorothy (Stefani) Bater, of Le Roy, was the oldest person in attendance, followed closely by Dolores (Stefani) Lathan, of Caledonia, who is one day younger.

Following the meeting, the family took photos, made spin-art paintings, pelted each other in a water-balloon toss, and tossed Cheetos onto the shaving-cream-covered heads of partners in a messy game of laughter and endurance (followed by cleaning each other off!).

Next year’s event chairs are Linda (Orlando) Totten, of Elba, Carol (Orlando) Panepento, of Pavilion, Gloria (Orlando) Oliver, of Le Roy, and Amy Panepento, of Le Roy.

August 1, 2016 - 12:58pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, byron, news.

A 55-year-old Byron resident can expect to spend 12 and a half years in state prison after entering a guilty plea to attempted murder today in Genesee County Court.

David O'Connor entered his plea on an Alford basis, which means he isn't admitting to the factual claim underlying the attempted murder charge, but that he would likely have been found guilty at trial.

According to District Attorney Lawrence Friedman, O'Connor denies that he was firing his rifle from the second floor of the Byron Hotel at Deputy Andrew Hale, attempting to kill him, on March 7. O'Connor maintains that he was aiming at the tires of the deputy's patrol vehicle.

The shot blew out the back windows of Hale's SUV.

The plea was part of an agreement that will cap O'Connor's prison term to 12 and a half years and avoids a trial.

Sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 30.

O'Connor made no statements in court today.

Previously:

July 25, 2016 - 10:50am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Bergen Swamps, byron, bergen, news, Destro.

A man from Irving got lost in a wooded area of the Bergen Swamps yesterday, and if not for the swamps' caretaker becoming concerned for his safety and the trained nose of K-9 "Destro" his off-the-trail hike could have turned out very badly.

The caretaker, Mike Merritt, said he noticed a person park at a trailhead and get out of his car and walk into the swamps about 3 p.m., yesterday. Since he had never seen the man before, and he was alone, he was a little concerned right off the bat about his activity.

When the man hadn't returned after two or three hours, his concern grew, he said.

"It was too hot, too muggy and too buggy to be out there that long," Merritt said.

So Merritt walked the entire trail himself and didn't find him.

At 10 o'clock, Merritt thought, 'well, if he's still out there, now he's trespassing' and 'I can call law enforcement without them coming out here unnecessarily.' "  

Deputy Rachel Diehl and Trooper James Moran arrived on scene and ran the plates of the unattended vehicle. They were able to contact family members, who expressed concern that they hadn't heard from Neil Gates for several hours.

Deputy Chris Erion and "Destro" were called to the scene, along with Byron's ambulance and some volunteer firefighters also responded.

With Merritt, who knows the area well, providing guidance, Erion and Destro commenced a search of the woods.  

It took more than two hours, but Gates was located curled up in some cattails where he had apparently gone to try and get water. 

He was dehydrated and had a minor knee injury, according to Chief Deputy Gordon Dibble.

Merritt said the Gates told officials he was a diabetic. 

He was treated by Byron EMTs at the scene and released.

The incident wrapped up at about 1:30 a.m., Merritt said.

Merritt noted that there are signs warning visitors to the swamps not to leave the trails.

"You can get 20 feet off a trail, get turned around and you think you know which direction to go to find a trail, but you won't find one," Merritt said.

Merritt said the concern and professionalism of those who responded last night was impressive. There was no hesitation by law enforcement to take on the search.

"I couldn't have gone out there without them," Merritt said. "With my cell phone dead, out there alone, I couldn't have helped him. He wouldn't have made it much longer."

July 24, 2016 - 2:05pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, Le Roy, batavia, news, byron.

Deborah Ruth Walker, 19, of Belmanor Drive, Rochester, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property, false personation, trespass, and unlawful possession of marijuana. She was arrested at 11:22 p.m. on July 23 following a suspicious incident in the Town of Le Roy. She allegedly was in possession of a stolen motor vehicle, gave a false name, was trespassing and had an amount of marijuana in her possession at the time. She was arraigned in Town of Le Roy Court and put in Genesee County Jail in lieu of $10,000 cash or $20,000 bond. She is due in Le Roy Town Court on Aug. 18. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Michael Lute.

Georgeta Marioara Coleman, 18, of Mount Hope Avenue, Rochester, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property, 4th, and trespass. She was arrested at 11:22 p.m. on July 23 following a suspicious incident in the Town of Le Roy. She allegedly was in possession of a stolen motor vehicle and was trespassing at a residence. She was arraigned in Town of Le Roy Court and put in Genesee County Jail in lieu of $10,000 cash or $20,000 bond. She is due in Le Roy Town Court on Aug. 18. The case was  handled by Sheriff's Deputy Michael Lute.

Larry Alvin Hubler, 67, Byron Holley Road, Byron, is charged with driving while intoxicated and operating a motor vehicle with a BAC of .08 or more. Hubler was arrested at 1:38 p.m. July 20 on Main Road in Stafford after allegedly driving his vehicle into a business, namely Dupont TV. He was issued an appearance ticket for Aug. 30 in Town of Stafford Court. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Joseph Loftus, assisted by Deputy John Dehm.

Rachel A. Palmer, 47, of Britt Road, Le Roy, was arrested on July 22 by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with two counts of petit larceny, a Class A misdemeanor, two counts of third-degree identity theft, also Class A misdemeanors, and criminal possession of stolen property in thr fourth degree, a Class E felony. Palmer was arrested following the investigation into the use of a stolen credit card which was used in the Village of Le Roy. Palmer allegedly used the stolen credit card to purchase merchandise at Dunkin Donuts as well as the Yellow Goose in the amount of $16.07. Palmer was arraigned and released under supervision of Genesee Justice. Palmer is to return to the Le Roy Town Court on Aug. 18 to answer to the charges.

Tonya Marie Ficarella, 29, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. She was arrested on a bench warrant out of the Town of Batavia Court for allegedly failing to appear in court regarding an alleged harassment at midnight on June 27 on West Main Street Road, Batavia. She was released and is set to appear in Batavia Town Court on Aug. 22. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Michael Lute.

July 21, 2016 - 4:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, byron, news.

A plea offer is on the table for a 55-year-old Byron resident accused of firing a rifle at a Sheriff's deputy who was sitting in his patrol car March 7.

David O'Connor appeared in County Court today for a scheduled Huntley hearing, which is based on a defense motion to dismiss statements O'Connor may have made once he was in custody. But O'Connor's attorney, Thomas Burns, dropped the motion and O'Connor waived the hearing after being told of a plea offer from District Attorney Lawrence Friedman.

The specifics of the plea offer were not discussed in open court.

O'Connor has until Aug. 1 to decide whether to accept the offer.

He is charged with attempted aggravated murder of a police officer. He was initially charged with first-degree reckless endangerment and third-degree criminal mischief.

O'Connor is accused of firing a single round from a .22-caliber rifle from the window of his apartment at the Byron Hotel at Deputy Andrew Hale, blowing out the windows of Hale's patrol vehicle, while Hale was performing a traffic stop in the parking lot of the Byron Arrow Mart.

No one was struck by the projectile and there were no injuries.

Previously: Single gunshot in Byron highlights the dangers of modern law enforcement

July 12, 2016 - 1:57pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, Stafford, byron, Pavilion.

Three young men were arrested late last night after Sheriff's deputies investigated a traffic offense complaint in which a person allegedly fired a 20-gauge shotgun in the direction of a vehicle that was following the vehicle that the alleged shooter was riding in. The incident occurred at 11:35 p.m. July 11 at an unspecified location in the Town of Stafford.

Michael T. Leubner, 18, of Linwood Avenue, Pavilion, is accused of firing the shotgun and he is charged with first degree reckless endangerment. He was arraigned in Town of Batavia Court and jailed in lieu of $5,000 bail or $10,000 bond. Leubner is due in Town of Stafford Court at 6 p.m. Thursday, July 14.

Austin J. Yockel, 19, of Byron Holley Road, Byron, is charged with reckless driving, a misdemeanor. Yockel was issued a traffic summons for allegedly driving a motor vehicle which unreasonably endangered users of the public highway while following the vehicle occupied by Leubner and others. Yockel is due in Town of Stafford Court at a later date to answer the charge.

Jason A. Armstrong Jr., 19, of Sweetland Road, Stafford, who was also a passenger in the vehicle Leubner was riding in, was allegedly found in possession of marijuana (a violation). He was issued an appearance ticket for City of Batavia Court at a later date. 

The case was investigated by Sheriff's Deputy Ryan Young, assisted by: Investigator Joseph Graff, Sgt. John Baiocco, Deputy Eric Meyer, Batavia PD and NYS Police.

July 12, 2016 - 12:38pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, byron, news.

A fast-moving field fire is reported in the area of Byron Holly Road and North Bergen Road, Byron.

There is reportedly fire equipment and a propane tank in the field.

Byron and South Byron dispatched.

Elba requested to the scene. Clarendon requested to the scene.

UPDATE 12:38 p.m.: The propane tank doesn't appear to be in any danger now.

UPDATE 12:59 p.m.: Stafford's brush truck was requested and just arrived at the scene.

UPDATE 1:02 p.m.: Command reports the "fire is under control and out."

UPDATE 1:15 p.m.: Overhauling underway. Mercy rig called to firefighters' rehab area, 6332 Byron Holley Road. One lane of traffic is closed by law enforcement.

UPDATE 2:54 p.m.: The assignment is back in service; all remaining units returning to quarters.

July 10, 2016 - 3:53pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, byron, news.

A car has reportedly hit a utility pole at Warboys Road and South Byron Road, Byron.

Unknown injuries.

Byron and South Byron fire departments along with Mercy EMS dispatched.

UPDATE 4 p.m.: Southbound traffic being shut down.

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