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August 25, 2012 - 8:08pm
posted by Billie Owens in Darien, accidents.

Mercy Flight is called to the Darien Fire Hall to aid a female. Medics are on scene. Mercy Flight out of Batavia will respond; no ETA given.

UPDATE 9:07 p.m.: The only further information I have is that this is a motorcycle vs. pedestrian accident and the pedestrian was injured. It happened near tonight's sold-out country concert at Darien Lake.

UPDATE 2:40 a.m. (By Howard): Jessica Freeman, 23, of Rochester, was a passenger in a vehicle, according to a State Police release, in the northbound lane of Route 77. The vehicle was stopped in heavy traffic when Freeman got out of the vehicle and attempted to cross Route 77. Troopers say she "ran directly into the path of a motorcylcle operated by Frank Pfalzer, 35, of Akron." Freeman was flown to ECMC. She suffered head and facial injuries. Pfalzer was not injured and not charged.

August 20, 2012 - 10:43am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Basom, crime, Oakfield, byron, Darien, Le Roy, Alabama, bergen.

Brett R. Doward, 26, 411 W. Hickory St., East Rochester, is charged with obstructing governmental administration, 2nd, criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and possession of a controlled substance not in it original container. Following a report at 12:06 a.m., Sunday, of a disturbance on Hall Street, Batavia, Batavia PD received the description of a person allegedly involved and the vehicle he allegedly used to leave the scene. Officer Jason Ivison spotted a vehicle matching the description on Ellicott Street. The vehicle fled and pulled into a driveway on Liberty Street. Doward allegedly jumped from the vehicle and ran. After a short foot pursuit, Doward was taken into custody. Doward was released on an appearance ticket. BPD was assisted by the Sheriff's Office and State Police.

A 17-year-old resident of North Main Street, Perry, is charged with petit larceny. The youth is accused of shoplifting from Kmart.

Jeremy Dean Lyons, 27, of Judge Road, Oakfield, is charged with criminal mischief, 3rd, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, 3rd, aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd and unlicensed operation. During a domestic dispute with his girlfriend, Lyons alleged damaged property and then allegedly took a vehicle without permission and drove the vehicle on a suspended license.

Jeremy Dean Lyons, 27, of Judge Road, Oakfield, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd. While housed in the Genesee County Jail, Lyons allegedly violated an order of protection by contacting the protected party.

Terri Marisa Doctor, 33, of Council House Road, Basom, is charged with DWI. Doctor was taken into custody on a Town of Pembroke warrant issued in November 2012 for allegedly failing to pay a fine on a DWI convictions. Doctor was jailed on $1,500 bail.

Spencer Todd Grimes, 18, of Goodrich Street, Albion, is charged with trespass. Grimes is reportedly a former employee of Darien Lake who was accused of stealing and barred from the property. Grimes was allegedly on the property Saturday morning.

Nicholas Lamont Santos, 19, of Gillette Road, Albion, is charged with trespass. Santos is reportedly a former employee of Darien Lake who was accused of stealing and barred from the property. Santos was allegedly on the property Saturday morning.

Randy Lee Ridd, 55, of Swamp Road, Byron, is charged with grand larceny, 4th, and trespass. Ridd is accused of trespassing on the property of a business in Bergen and stealing metal plates. Also charged was Corretta Melissa Pitts, 44, of Swamp Road, Byron.

Brandon Monteleon, 20, of 57 Church St., Le Roy, is charged with criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation and harassment. Monteleone was arrested following an alleged disturbance on Church Street between the defendant and another individual.

Daniel S. Platt, 31, of 53 Lake St., Le Roy, is charged with criminal obstruction of breaking or blood circulation and one count of unlawful dealing with a child and harassment, 2nd. Platt is accused of placing his hands around the neck of a victim, causing difficulty breathing. He's also accused of serving alcohol to a person under age 21.

Andrea M. Gray, 34, of 14 Lake St., Apt. #2, Le Roy, is charged with harassment, 2nd, and reckless endangerment, 2nd. Gray reportedly had an argument with an acquaintance on Lake Street. Gray allegedly pushed the victim, causing the victim to fall backward. The victim's head struck a driveway. Gray is also accused of sitting on the victim and pulling the victim's hair. Gray was jailed on $1,000 bail.

August 19, 2012 - 4:44pm
posted by Billie Owens in Attica, fire, alexander, Darien, Bethany.

Firefighters and equipment from Alexander, Bethany and Darien are heading to Wyoming County to provide mutual aid at a structure fire at 1136 Creek Road in Attica, which is off Lindsey Road.

August 18, 2012 - 11:00am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, darien lake, Darien.

The following arrests were made by the Sheriff's Office in connection with Def Leppard/Poison concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center:

Sarah B. Blevins, 22, of E. Bayard Street Extension, Seneca Falls, is charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest after allegedly causing a disturbance at the Sumner Road employee entrance to Darien Lake and then refusing to be taken into custody. Blevins was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail in lieu of $500 bail.

Blanca Compton, 49, and Brian L. Compton, 46, both of Route 414, Lodi, are charged with obstruction of governmental administration, 2nd, and disorderly conduct after allegedly interfering with deputies making another arrest and engaging in violent tumultuous behavior. Both suspects were arraigned in Darien Town Court and both were remanded to jail in lieu of $500 bail each.

Lorraine A. Goodell, 38, of Railroad Avenue, Waterloo, is charged with trespass after allegedly refusing to leave the concert venue. Goodell was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail in lieu of $250 bail.

Benjamin Rosputin, 31, of Kaymar Drive, Amherst, is charged with harassment, 2nd, after allegedly shoving a CSC security guard inside the venue.

August 16, 2012 - 1:15pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in business, GCEDC, Darien, darien lake theme park.

The Genesee County Economic Development Center is helping the owners of Darien Lake Theme Park refinance $57.5 million in loans by authorizing a mortgage tax exemption of $719,062.

According to a GCEDC release, the bank refinancing the loans is -- for an unexplained reason -- requiring a new mortgage on the property, which is triggering a mortgage tax.

The theme park is owned by Georgia-based Herschend Family Entertainment, which has invested approximately $15 million in upgrades to the facility.

There are 400 full-time equivalent jobs at Darien Lake with an annual payroll of $11 million and the park generates $2.5 million in revenue for local governments and school districts through property and sales taxes.

August 15, 2012 - 8:48pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, Darien.

Press release:

The Genesee County Sheriff's Office is investigating the Aug. 11 theft of a vehicle from a parking lot at Darien Lake Theme Park.

The white 2004 four-door Acura sedan was taken from the VIP parking lot during a concert. The vehicle has a sunroof, low profile, custom black rims, and dark tinted windows.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Genesee County Sheriff's Office at (585) 343-5000.

August 13, 2012 - 10:05am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Oakfield, byron, Darien, corfu.

Robert P. Leiser Jr., of Lockport Road, Oakfield, is charged with assault, 2nd, and criminal contempt, 1st. Leiser was allegedly involved in a domestic incident July 24 at his residence. Leiser allegedly struck a female in the head with a flashlight. The woman required medical treatment. Leiser was allegedly under court order not to have physical contact with the woman. He was located in the City of Batavia, arrested, and jailed on $15,000 bail.

James A. Klotzback, 35, of Rochester, is charged with assault, 2nd. Klotzback was arrested by State Police for an alleged incident reported at 9:18 a.m., Wednesday, in the Town of Byron. No further details were released.

Summer Ogden, 36, no permanent address, is charged with trespass. Ogden is accused of being on 400 Towers property after allegedly being previously told by police and management that she was barred from the property.

Morgan B. Mikolajczyk, 18, of 328 S. Jackson St., Batavia, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Mikolajczyk is accused of pushing a family member during an argument.

Jessica R. Johns, 29, of 122 Jackson St., Batavia, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Johns allegedly possess marijuana while a passenger in a vehicle that was stopped on Jackson Avenue for an alleged traffic violation.

Cory J. Endres, 18, of 400 B Island Cottage Road, Rochester, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Endres was arrested Thursday by State Police for an alleged incident reported June 9 in the Town of Darien. No further details released.

Daniel H. Bettilyon, 51, of Hamlin, is charged with felony DWI and felony driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Bettilyon was stopped by State Police at 1:24 p.m., Friday, on Maltby Road, Oakfield.

Emily Ann Lane, 22, of Corfu, is charged with petit larceny. Lane allegedly stole $51.94 in merchandise from Kmart.

Richard Charles Hollfelder, 54, of Oakfield, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, failure to keep right and leaving the scene of a property damage accident.
August 12, 2012 - 12:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, darien lake, Darien.

The following people were arrested by members of the Sheriff's Office in connection with the Brad Paisley Virtual Reality Concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center on Saturday.

The 10 arrests are down from the 14 at last year's show. After the 2011 concert, Paisley posted on Twitter: "Quite a performance in Darien Lakes Saturday. We also played music." (followed by a link to The Batavian's story on arrests at the show)

There were 56 underage drinking citations last year and 81 this year. The increase can be attributed, at least in part, to increased enforcement at the park in 2012.

All but one of the arrests last year might be attributed to drunken misbehavior. This year, only, maybe, five of the 10 arrests might fit that description.

Benjamin B. Cramer, 27 of Route 20, Varysburg, is charged with public lewdness and resisting arrest after allegedly urinating in the concert venue and then resisting arrest. Cramer was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail in lieu of $500 bail.

Jessica L. Juda, 22, of Pleasant Valley Road, Delevan, is charged with trespass after allegedly reentering the concert venue after being ejected and told not to return. Juda was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail in lieu of $100 bail.

Daniel R. Blonski, 22, of Salem Avenue, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, is charged with trespass after allegedly reentering the concert venue after being ejected and told not to return. Blonski was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail in lieu of $100 bail.

Kelsey M. Shea, 19, of Towhee Court, East Amherst, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and possession of alcohol under age 21.

Tanner C. Boesch, 19 of Turkill Road, Fairport, is charged with inlawful possession of marijuana after allegedly being found in possession of a quantity of marijuana.

Kathryn A. Tuscano, 20, of Main Avenue, Norwalk, Conn., is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana after allegedly being found in possession of a quantity of marijuana.

Erik Schneckenberger, 29, of Roycroft Drive, West Seneca, is charged with harassment, 2nd, after allegedly striking another concert patron.

Jedidiah B. Gabriel, 21 of William Street, Lancaster, is charged with trespass after allegedly reentering the concert venue after being ejected and told not to return.

Jaclyn D. Marshfield, 18, of Pompey Center, Fabius, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana after allegedly being found in possession of a quantity of marijuana.

Matthew M. Muldowney, 18, of Route 11, Tully, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana after allegedly being found in possession of a quantity of marijuana.

The following people received citations for alleged possession or consumption of alcohol under age 21.

William T. Bickelman, 18, of Contessa Court, Williamsville
Kate L. Blair, 17, of Highmanor Drive, Henrietta
Stephanie M. Sorber, 17, of Chelsa Meadows, West Henrietta
Patrick M. Byrne II, 18, of Butler Drive, Pittsford
Jordan D. Messimer, 18, of Rush-Scottsville Road, Rush
Justin T. Larusch, 18, Tamarack Street, Buffalo
Dylan J. Caldiero, 20, of Tuscarora Road, Buffalo
Robert W. Anderson, 20, of Nottingham Terrace, Hamburg
Rebecca E. Milbrand, 20, of Renwood Avenue, Kenmore
Hannah J. Verboon, 18, of Jerseyville Road, Brant County, Ontario, Canada
Steven A. Tripp, 19, of Sawmill Road, Street, Catherines, Ontario, Canada
Emily N. Kosakowski, 18, of Morwick Drive, Ancaster, Ontario, Canada
Tara A. Derosa, 18, of Gateway Road, Fairport
Dominic J. Zambelli, 19, of Dickinson Crossing, Fairport
Felicia M. Lattanzio, 20, of Wynmoor Drive, Cicero
Britta M. Schug, 20, of Lawdon Street, North Syracuse
Lilian R. Smith, 19, of Hamilton Road, North Syracuse
Carl J. Larson, 20, of Glen Oak Drive, East Amherst
Julia A. Lauria, 18, of Ashwood Lane, Orchard Park
Calle J. Demeter, 20, of Hillside Drive, Orchard Park
Sarah R. Jacobs-Ferderbar, 20, of Timberlake Drive, Orchard Park
Emily S. McCreary, 20, of Melinda Lane, Phoenix, Ariz.
Tamara L. Medgrossi,17, of Morgan Drive, Lewiston
Keith R. Burns, 19, of Youngstown-Lockport Road, Ransomville
Meggan M. Imcorvia, 20, of Homestead Drive, North Tonawanda
Kayleigh R. Erickson, 19, of Harris Hill Road, Falconer
Michael J. Ovellette, 20, of Olympia Drive, Rochester
Taylor A. Schimenti, 17, of Almont Avenue, West Seneca
Reaghan T. Hayes, 20, of Doyle Road, Baldwinsville
Breanna M. Hyman, 20, of Hyman Road, Newark
Margaret C. Vankouwenberg, 20, of Bryant Avenue, Newark
Ryan J. Digati, 19, of Cardinal Lane, Grand Island
Michael R. T. Malaney, 17, of Settlers Road, Grand Island
Dakota C. Swain, 18, of Gordonville Road, Rushford
Taylor K. Bedford, 19, of Whitney Lane, Grand Island
Cassie K. Gilcart, 16, of Whitney Lane,  Grand Island
Julia L. Pratt, 19, of Dalton Road, Cato
Grace E. Rooney, 19, of Hilltop Road, Syracuse
Vincent R. S. Scienza, 19, of Straight Road, Forestville
Jennifer E. Hasting, 20, of Claudette Court, Depew
Mandy L. Odrobina, 20, of Madaline Lane, Depew
Jacob N. Resnick, 20, of Lakeshore Drive, Hilton
Jessica A. Woons, 20, of Tribbles Lane, Rochester
Jake W. Wark, 20, of Maplewood Avenue, Spencerport
Neil A. Dambra, 20, of Dortmund Circle, Rochester
Jennifer A. Lopez, 20, of Renaissance Drive, Rochester
Michael J. Brocklehurst, 19, of Linwood Avenue, North Tonawanda
Shane G. Sawicki, 20, of Clarice Drive, Hamburg
Amanda G. Rivera, 18, of Brown Street, Penn Yan
Nicholas R. Groff, 16, of Bullis Road, Elma
Morgan L. McMahon, 19, of Lisle Road, Owego
Darrcy E. Matthews, 20, of Green Street Extension, Dekalb Junction
Abigail M. Ohlmeyer, 20, of Mason Drive, Syracuse
Nathan J. Kloepfer, 19, of Leroy Street, Camillus
Erin M. Myers, 20, of Kent Place, Syracuse
Kala M. Wilkins, 18, of Simsbury Lane, Pittsford
Jennifer A. Riley, 18, of Mahoga Street, Pittsford
Conner C. Renaldo, 16, of Shirley Road, North Collins
Merit L. Jendrowski, 20, of Newton Avenue, Akron
Jenna T. Jendrowski, 17, of Newton Avenue, Akron
Anna L. Legrett, 20, of Lantern Lane, Honeoye Falls
Nicholas J. Fredette, 19, of County Route 24, Minetto
Rebecca A. Krass, 18, of West Myers Road, Oswego
Mary K. Finn, 19, of Swift Street, Oswego
Destini L. Carter, 17, of Bronson Street, Oswego
Morgan A. Allen, 19, of Kathleen Drive, Oswego
Haley N. Sierdsma, 17, of Dunkirk Drive, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Riley D. McCullough, 17, of Hill Garden Drive, Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada
Matthew R. Kennedy, 17, of Trinity Church Road, Binbrook, Ontario, Canada
Jamie J. Vandehei, 17, of Bell Road, Binbrook, Ontario, Canada
Luke J. Nault, 18, of Binbrook Road, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada
Cody G. G. Badour, 18, of Braemar Avenue, Caledonia, Ontario, Canada
Brian J. Sheppard, 19, of White Stone Lane, Lancaster
Neena M. Carter, 17, of Electric Avenue, Cheektowaga
Rachel J. Bolton, 17, of Croydon Drive, Depew
Isiah L. Montpetit, 18, of Freeman Road, Middleport
Dominique Dipietro, 17, of Misty Lane, East Amherst
Benjamin A. Rein, 16, of Via Pinto Drive, Williamsville
Patrick J. Quinn, 18, of Gaylord Court, Elma
Andrew J. Partridge, 19, of Black Creek Road, Hamburg
Nathan C. Bracci-Kurtz, 18, of Queens Way, Depew

August 10, 2012 - 1:25am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, darien lake, Darien.

There were no arrests in the concert venue Thursday night in connection with the Big Time Rush / Cody Simpson concert at the Darien Lake Performing Arts Center.

There were no citations for underage drinking, according to a Sheriff's Office release.

There was a DWI arrest in the parking lot.

Janet Mary Brady, 45, reportedly drove into the employee parking lot after being told not to enter the lot. Upon investigation, she was allegedly found to be operating in an intoxicated condition with her 5-year-old child in the car. The exact charges she faces were not listed in the Sheriff's Office press release. She was released on an appearance ticket.

If you're not familiar with Big Time Rush, below is a video.

August 7, 2012 - 8:19am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Basom, crime, elba, Darien, Alabama.

Todd Allan Betts, 35, of Transit Road, Elba, is charged with reckless endangerment, 1st, endangering the welfare of a child, menacing, 2nd, criminal obstruction of breathing and harassment, 2nd. Betts was charged following the report of a domestic incident. Betts allegedly grabbed a woman by the throat and threw her to the ground. He allegedly pointed a shotgun in the direction of the woman and a child. Betts was jailed on $2,500 bail.

Tametha A. Wentland, 40, of Harlow Road, Darien, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Wentland is accused of physically contacting a victim. The incident was reported at 11:59 p.m., Saturday. Wentland was arrested by State Police.

Levi Winnie, 26, of 590 Council House Road, Basom, is charged with criminal mischief, 4th. The alleged incident was reported at 4:15 a.m., Saturday. Winnie was arrested by State Police on the Tonawanda Indian Reservation. No further details were released.

August 2, 2012 - 9:10am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, darien lake, Darien.

The following people were arrested Wednesday by the Sheriff’s Department during the WEDG Slipknot/Slayer concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center.

David A. Staley, 49, of Shumway Street, Buffalo, is charged with disorderly conduct after allegedly engaging in a fight in the parking lot.

Steven J. Pavone, 27, of West Squire Drive, Rochester, is charged with disorderly conduct after allegedly engaging in a fight in the parking lot.

Richard W. Lee, 23, of North Park Drive, Rochester, is charged with trespass after allegedly climbing a light pole inside the concert venue.

Peter Z. Torok, 51, of Salmon Creek Road, Brockport, is charged with DWI and driving with more than .08 BAC after allegedly driving in the parking lot intoxicated.

The following people were charged with unlawful possession of marijuana:

Jacob C. Berg, 21, of West Morris Street, Bath
Leanne P. Maniscallo, 30, of Point Breeze Street, Angola
Timothy M. Schultz, 31, of Angola Place, Angola
Michael D. Pilger, 40, of Caleb Avenue, Syracuse
Douglas W. Teed II, 30, of Cronk Road, Montour Falls
Gregory M. Crites, 31, of Mitchell Place, Lackawana
Richard A. Bieger, 27, of Longnecker Street, Buffalo

The following people were issued citations for alleged consumtion/possession of alcohol under age 21.

David Z. Custard-Jarosz, 19, of Hopkins Street, South Buffalo (two citations)
Jacob M. Parisi, 19, of Westmar Drive, Rochester
Amanda M. Scheiber, 19, of River Road, Niagara Falls
Timothy M. Zambito, 19, of Ward Road, Sanborn
Chelsea E. Printup, 17, of Poodry Road, Alabama
Joseph M. Nappo, 20, of East Center Road, West Seneca
Ryan J. McMahon, 19, of Towers Blvd. Cheektowaga
John M. Tredd, 20, of Pine Ridge Road, Busti
Chanda L. Germain, 19, of Prospect Street, Portage, Pa.
Tara L. Castle, 19, of Chapin Street, Seneca Falls

Regarding the lower number of underage drinking citations, Deputy Chief Gordon Dibble said Slipknot and Slayer draw a slightly older crowd than say, Toby Keith.

"We still went out looking for violations, we just didn't find too many," Dibble said.

Dibble didn't have the exact attendance figures, but the projected attendance (which the Sheriff's Office uses to guage the size of its enforcement and traffic detail) was 6,500.

July 30, 2012 - 4:34pm
posted by Billie Owens in fire, Darien, corfu.

An oven fire is reported at 2683 County Line Road in Darien. The residents used a fire extinguisher on the blaze but it's unknown if that was effective. They were advised to leave the residence. Darien fire, with mutual aid from Corfu, is responding.

UPDATE 4:41 p.m.: A responder on scene reports nothing is showing (outside). The address is just north of Sumner Road. The residents are in the back yard. The house "is charged with fire (inside)" and the fireman says it looks "like a cake boiled over." The other unit responding is proceeding in non-emergency mode. They're going to check things out with a thermal-imaging camera.

UPDATE 4:53 p.m.: It was burnt food. All units back in service.

July 30, 2012 - 10:52am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, darien lake, Darien.

Toby Keith may like girls who drink beer, but when they come to his concerts at Darien Lake, those drinking beer better be at least 21 years old.

Last night a total of 225 young people found that out when they were issued citations in a joint effort involving the Sheriff's Office, State Police and Darien Lake security to crack down on underage drinking at the concert venue.

A checkpoint was set up earlier in the afternoon at the entrance to the park and at least a half dozen troopers were involved in issuing nearly 80 citations by 6 p.m.

The aggressive early enforcement, officials believe, contributed to quieter night with fewer arrests for rowdy behavior than is typical for a major country star's show at Darien Lake.

"What you’re seeing tonight is just a little more creative effort into ways to better to enforce (underage drinking)," said Bob Montgomery, general manager for the theme park. "We’ve worked hard this year and I think our arrests have almost doubled from what they were last year when they increased from whatever they’ve been in the past."

Throughout the evening, deputies talked about how fewer disruptive incidents they were being reported, almost with a level of amazement.

The show, after all, was Toby Keith, whose concert in 2011 had eight people arrested for alleged disruptive behavior.

On Sunday, only four people were taken into custody for what could be described as disruptive behavior.

Typically, as concertgoers try to exit the facility after a big country concert, police radio traffic is filled with hectic chatter of reports of fights in the parking lot, but last night only one "head-butting" incident was reported.

Sgt. Thomas Sanfratello, who usually heads up the concert law enforcement detail, thinks curbing underage drinking helped the situation.

"I think it's a direct reflection on the ABCs (citations)," Sanfratello said.

During the 2011 season, law enforcement issued 526 citations for alleged underage drinking.

Coming into Sunday's show, there had already been 353 citations issued. Add in Sunday's ticket writing and it brings the year's total to 578. 

The 2012 season is only half over.

As underage drinkers were found, if they had alcohol, they had to dump it out or dispose of it, including those stopped at the checkpiont.

One officer said he came across a group of young people in the parking lot minutes after they arrived. The group had to dump out several six-packs of beer and an unopened bottle of gin.

As a result of the enforcement effort, an official said that fewer people than usual were refused entrance to the concert for being overly intoxicated.

"We’re really pleased with what we’ve seen tonight," Montgomery said. "It’s definitely made a difference tonight by being preemptive, and by putting the fence up it will work only that much better."

The chainlink fence will stretch along a large portion of the Darien Lake property on Sumner Road blocking access to the concert venue for anyone who tries to walk in from a private lot.

For years, residents along Sumner Road have let people park in their yards and pastures for a fee.

On Aug. 24, Darien Lake will close pedestrian access to the venue from Sumner Road.

Of course, concertgoers will still be able to park in the private lots, if residents continue to allow it, but they will be required to either drive into the venue or walk around to the main entrance on Alleghany Road.

"We're very interested in creating a safe environment for all guests," said Gerald Rakestraw, VP of development for Darien Lake's owner, Herschend Family Entertainment. "Securing the park's perimeter is key because of the pedestrian issues and access for emergency vehicles."

Rakestraw has been working closely with Montgomery and his staff to come up with a plan to improve concertgoer safety and enjoyment, he said.

While some property owners had signs up Sunday indicating they will shut down their parking operations Aug. 24, others may continue to try and lure concert goers to their lots.

There has been some talk of lots offering shuttles to the front entrance, but Montgomery said Darien Lake won't allow drop-offs from such shuttles.

"A shuttle in also means a shuttle out, and that’s just not feasible," Montgomery said. "So we’re not going to encourage that kind of operation because it really doesn’t work."

Officials plan to do their best to educate the public prior to Aug. 24 about the changes and there will be conspicuous signage for anybody going to private lots that pedestrian access to the park from Sumner Road is not allowed, Montgomery said.

"They'll find when they get here that they can't access the PAC area," Montgomery said. "Certainly they (concertgoers) are welcome to do park there,  but they’ll find they won’t be able to walk down (to the concert)."

Getting traffic moving out of the parking lot swiftly is a key strategy to cutting down on altercations in the parking lot, officials said. When there's gridlock, tempers flare. On Sunday, the parking lot was cleared of nearly all cars by 1 a.m., about an hour ahead of the typical time for a concert attended by more than 16,000 people.

With all the emphasis on underage drinking Sunday, Sanfratello, along with other members of law enforcement, said he could see a big difference in the parking lots both prior and after the show. There were fewer masses of young people gathered around big piles of empty beer cans. There was less unruly behavior and after the show. There was a lot less trash dumped on the ground.

The security trailer where suspects are booked prior to to arraignment in Darien Town Court was a pretty quiet room for most of Sunday night.

One person was brought in and had to be placed in a restraint chair as he appeared to fight with deputies while laughing and bragging of his strength.

Two other young women were booked for allegedly giving false information about themselves while being cited for alleged underage drinking.

Rachel A. Johnson, 19, of Linwood Road, Le Roy, allegedly gave Sanfratello the names of a friend and of her sister before Sanfratello acquired her real name.

She was charged with two counts of criminal impersonation, 2nd.

At one point he asked her, "Was it worth the $1,000 fine instead of a $50 ticket?"

Then there was the case of a 16-year-old from Canada who was cited for alleged underage drinking. He was stopped on Employee Road and as he was being written up he started to freak out just a little bit, sure the citation meant the end of all of his hopes and dreams.

"You don't understand," he said. "I'm from Canada. It's not like the United States. I was going into the army. They won't take me now."

Because of his age, a deputy spoke to his mother and got permission for him to be released to the custody of his older girlfriend.

Only minutes later, the youth returned. He said he didn't know what to do. A deputy told him to go enjoy the concert, but he couldn't because his girlfriend had just broken up with him and went into the show without him.

The youth had to wait in the security area until 10 p.m. when his father arrived from Canada to pick him up and take him home.

While a Buffalo News reporter was at the show Sunday, officials hope more Rochester and Buffalo media pick up the story of increased law enforcement pressure to curb underage and problem drinking at shows. They also hope stories such as this get passed around on Twitter and Facebook.

The message officials hope sinks in for the public isn't that you can come to Darien Lake, have a good time and even drink a little. It's just that if you're under 21, you shouldn't drink at all, and if you're of age, drink responsibly.

"We want people to com and have a great time here," Montgomery said. "Our issue is when that good time starts to go a little overboard and disturb the quiet enjoyment of the other people at the show."

The Sheriff's Office press release of arrests and citations along with more pictures from Sunday are after the jump (click on the headline to read more):

July 27, 2012 - 6:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in darien lake, Darien, Sumner Road.

For Brian English, the prospect of people no longer parking on the front lawn of his home on Sumner Road won't make or break him.

He has a full-time job. He can still meet his expense budget. He just won't get the extra cash that made living next door to Darien Lake Theme Park so much fun.

For some of his neighbors, the new policy banning pedestrian traffic from entering the concert venue from off-site parking could be a problem, English said.

"I'm going to hate to lose the money, but I'm not going to go bankrupt," English said. "Some of the people that count on the money, it's going to drive them to bankruptcy."

When the new policy takes effect Aug. 17, according to officials, it is aimed at addressing three ongoing issues with concerts at the park:

  • Pedestrian safety on Sumner Road;
  • Traffic flow in and out of the venue;
  • Underage drinking sometimes associated with concerts at the venue.

Steve Hollowell, marketing director for Darien Lake, said the park's owners and management started working on a plan to deal with these issues last summer and decided to implement it this year.

Gordon Dibble, deputy chief with the Sheriff's Office, said it's been obvious there is a safety problem along Sumner Road on concert nights.

"Well, I think the safety concern is obvious to anybody that if you have that kind of foot traffic at any venue anywhere and then throw in alcohol into it, you don't have to be a police officer to understand the danger there," Dibble said. "It's a major concern."

Earlier this summer a young man stepped in front of a van on Sumner Road and was killed. Though the driver has been cleared of any wrongdoing, the accident remains under investigation and details about events around the accident have not been released.

Dibble and Hollowell both said they expect the changes to improve access into and out of the parking areas.

Hollowell said one of the major problems with the private lots is that the owners let all of their customers leave at the same time, dumping thousands of cars all at once onto Sumner Road. That blocks up traffic for customers who have parked for free in Darien's own lots.

The change will allow the Sheriff's Office to more efficiently manage the traffic, Dibble said, in part because with less traffic they can use Sumner as a detour when traffic to the Thruway becomes too backed up. Deputies will also be able to send traffic out of the back gate from the grass lots in either direction, giving the Sheriff's Office greater flexibility in managing traffic.

While there's never been a problem with law enforcement going onto private property, such as the Hill, to check for underage drinking, it isn't something deputies do often, Dibble said.

Typically, deputies position themselves at the bottom of the driveway to the Cherry Hill Campground or on Employee Road and detect and ticket alleged underage drinkers that way.

Hollowell said with all of the parking confined to the Darien Lake property, it will be easier for law enforcement and Darien Lake's own security to detect possible underage drinkers.

Officials hope that will reduce the amount of underage drinking at concerts.

"We think we will be able to better enforce the rules much more effectively in our own lots," Hollowell said.

Brian English said that if pedestrians on Sumner Road are an issue, that shouldn't really effect his property, which is on the north side of the road and pedestrians can walk right onto Darien's property without getting anywhere near the roadway.

Officials said allowing even access to the venue for pedestrians leaving his property and other north-of-the-road properties doesn't address the traffic flow issues.

The first area of construction for the new fences being erected by Darien Lake is directly across the road from Cherry Hill Campground, known far and wide as "The Hill."

The couple who identified themselves as the owners of Cherry Hill Campground, but didn't provide their names, refused an interview with The Batavian.

They objected to our coverage of the pedestrian's death (the man was hit on Sumner Road while crossing from the driveway of The Hill and the male owner objected to The Batavian reporting that the incident happened at The Hill) and they both objected to yesterday's headline on the Darien Lake parking story that began "End of The Hill."

'It's far from the end of 'The Hill,'" the man said.

The woman said, "When you can engage in unbiased reporting, then we'll talk with you."

To any further questions she said, "No comment."

July 27, 2012 - 8:23am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Darien.

Samantha M. Williams, 31, of 218 State St., Batavia, is charged with resisting arrest and false personation. Batavia PD contacted Williams at 8:58, Thursday, in an attempt to execute an arrest warrant out of the Town of Hamburg on charges of resisting arrest and obstructing governmental administration, 2nd. When Batavia PD officers attempted to arrest Williams, she allegedly gave a false name and then allegedly resisted arrest. Williams was issued an appearance ticket for city court and turned over to the Hamburg PD.

Nicole Marie Paddock, 24, of Liberty Street, Warsaw, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Paddock is accused of striking a female friend as the exited the concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center parking lot at 10:30 p.m., Thursday.

July 26, 2012 - 2:22pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in business, tourism, darien lake, Darien.

Press release:

In its latest step to ensure the safety and enjoyment of guests going to the Darien Lake Performing Arts Center, Darien Lake has announced it will require concertgoers to park in free on-site lots. As of Aug. 17, pedestrian access to the Performing Arts Center will be restricted to passenger drop-off at a designated area near the main gate.

“We offer more than enough parking to accommodate park visitors, overnight guests, and a sell-out crowd at the Performing Arts Center,” explained Darien Lake General Manager Bob Montgomery. “In our work with Live Nation, the Genesee County Sheriff’s Department, and New York State Police, we’ve determined that allowing pedestrian access to concerts increases risk to those walking along the roadway, increases traffic jams before and after concerts, and increases the incidence of excessive pre- and post-show alcohol consumption.”

The new parking rules mark the second significant step Darien Lake’s management organization, Herschend Family Entertainment, has implemented this year to improve the concertgoing experience. At the beginning of the 2012 season, Darien Lake stepped up patrols to decrease the incidence of underage drinking at its events. As a result, arrests for underage drinking have more than doubled over last year.

To help enforce its new parking policy, Darien Lake will erect a fence along Sumner Road (County Road 21). Construction of the fence began on July 24th, and will take approximately three weeks. All concert attendees will be required to enter by vehicle at the main Darien Lake entrance. There will continue to be no charge for on-site parking for concertgoers.

“Darien Lake was built to handle an influx and outflow of traffic,” Montgomery said. “With less traffic coming onto side roads from offsite parking, we believe this new policy may ultimately result in smoother traffic flow.”

The Darien Lake Performing Arts Center schedule includes eight concerts between now and the end of this year’s concert season (Sept. 15). The new policy will be in effect beginning August 17, throughout the 2012 and future concert seasons.

July 26, 2012 - 8:36am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Darien.

The following people were arrested by members of the Sheriff's Office in connection with the Nickelback concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center on Wednesday.

Reuben L. Bumpus, 29, of Davis Drive, Newark, is charged with 14 counts of criminal mischief, 3rd, after allegedly throwing stones damaging 14 vehicles in the employee parking lot. Bumpus was arraigned and jailed on $10,000 bail.

Robert J. Tilton, 37, of Burkhart Road, Lexington, N.C., is charged with assault, 3rd, after allegedly punching another concert patron in the face causing a severe laceration. Tilton was arraigned and jailed on $1,000 bail.

Ryan J. Johnson, 21, of Hidden Oaks Court, Grand Island, is charged with unlawfully dealing with a child, 1st, after allegedly providing alcohol to two underage females.

Doel H. Hormats, 23, of Lake Avenue, Rochester, is charged with criminal mischief, 4th, after allegedly damaging a seat in the venue.

Dustin W. Tagg, 17, of County Road, 15 Livonia, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana after allegedly being found in possession of marijuana.

Jeffrey W. Donahue, 20, of Roosevelt Highway, Waterport, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and possession of alcohol under 21 after allegedly being found in possession of marijuana and alcohol.

Leslie W. Bardak, 50, of Hardt Lane, Amherst, is charged with DWI and aggravated DWI after allegedly being found operating a motor vehicle in the parking lot in an intoxicated condition.

The following people received citations for alleged possession or consumption of alcohol under 21 years of age.

Tyler D. Hall, 18, of Route 362, Bliss
Jonathan R. Maroone, 18, of Hamburg
Kayla M. Stephenson, 18, of Middlesex Drive, Orchard Park
Carl L. Ratze, 17, of Pine Street, Franklinville
Joshua J. Fuller, 16, of Franklin Street, Franklinville
Nicholas H. Terwilliger, 17, of Johnson Street, Franklinville
Eric D. Michaelis, 16, of 2nd Avenue, Franklinville
(name redacted upon request), 17, of Florence Drive, Ransomville
(name redacted upon request), 17, of Porter Center Road, Lewiston
(name redacted upon request), 16, of Onondaga Street, Lewiston
(name redacted upon request), 16, Dickersonville Road, Ransomville
Jazzmin B. Lewis, 16, of Parkview Terrace,Cheektowaga
Lillith O. Boyd-Gamel, 18, of Pendennis Place, Cheektowaga
Nicole S. Putland, 18, of Peachtree Road, Cheektowaga
Sarah L. Williams, 17, of Staley Road, Grand Island
Kelly E. William, 20, of Staley Road, Grand Island
Tyler M. Bartlett, 18, of Kellogg Road, Springwater

July 23, 2012 - 7:52am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, darien lake, Darien.

The following four people were arrested by Sheriff's Office in connection with the Allman Brothers / Santana concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center on Sunday evening.

Christine L. Guiher, 40, of Sheridan Park, Tonawanda, is charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest after allegedly causing a disturbance while being ejected from the concert venue and then physically resisting arrest, Guiher was arraigned in Darien Town Court and jailed on $500 bail.

Connor B. Holly, 24, of Gradiner Park, Rochester, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater after allegedly being found operating a motor vehicle in the parking lot while intoxicated.

John D. Romero, 20, of Reddick Lane, Rochester, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and possession of alcohol under 21.

Megan E. Wells, 19, of Honeoye Falls Road, Honeoye Falls, is charged with unlawful possession, of marijuana and possession of alcohol under 21.

There were 21 citations issued for alleged possession or consumption of alcohol under age 21.

Karl V. Langrek, 19, of Middle Road, East Concord
Tyler R. Johnson, 19, of Tonawanda Creek Road, North Tonawanda
Benjamin R. Rupert, 19, of Robinson Road, Lockport
Justin E. Mast, 20, of Creek View Drive, Clarence Center
Austin B. Renz, 18, of Swamp Road, Auburn
Maxwell G. Johnson, 17, of East Lake Road, Skaneateles
James S. Mills, 18, of West Lake Road, Skaneateles
Bridget A. Field, 18, of Bishop Hill Road, Skaneateles
Matthew M. Hurley, 19, of Clardon Drive, Williamsville
Kaitlyn M. Hayes, 18, of Lake Street, Perry
Dylan M. Fox, 20, of Division Street, Pike
Alan J. Warren, 20, of Crotty Road, Fillmore
Steven C. Trubia, 18, of Windmill Trail, Rochester
Kevin Q. Widzinski, 18 Hubbard Street, North Chili
Samuel K. Knapton, 19, of Dewey Street, Churchville
Jessica B. Emick, 20, of Whitehouse Road, Portville
David L. Rubach, 19, of Lincoln Road, Snyder
John S. W. Yanity, 20, of Koster Row, Amherst
Eoghan L. Connors, 20, of Autobon Drive, Snyder
Michael P. Lempko, 20, of Berryman Drive, Amherst
Kyle C. Dains, 20, of Chateau Terrace, Amherst

July 21, 2012 - 8:10pm
posted by Billie Owens in Darien, accidents.

One person suffered an arm injury in a dirt-bike accident at 10063 Fargo Road, which is between Bell and Sumner roads. Darien fire and ambulance are responding.

UPDATE 8:14 p.m.: It's determined that the patient has a broken arm.

UPDATE 8:21 p.m.: The patient is being transported to UMMC.

July 19, 2012 - 7:02am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Darien.

A one-vehicle rollover accident on Route 77 right in front of the Darien Lake Theme Park has been reported. Darien Fire Department is responding.

Minor injuries are reported.

UPDATE 7:17 a.m.: Vehicle is upside down at the bottom of a ditch that's 6 feet deep.

UPDATE 7:39 a.m.: Darien back in service.


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