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January 18, 2011 - 11:00am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime.

Three people who may be suspects in some recent church burglaries here were chased into a swamp by Monroe County deputies yesterday.

The three suspects were allegedly in a stolen Jeep being chased by a deputy on Route 441 when it crashed near Dublin Road in Penfield. The suspects then tried to escape through a swamp.

Chief Deputy Jerome Brewster confirmed this morning that the suspects may be connected to some church burglaries in Genesee County.

The investigation is ongoing and Brewster said more information would be released as the case develops.

Arrested in Monroe County were Juan Morales, 21, Abner Santiago, 28, and Jose Morales, 16, all of Monroe County.

The trio was arraigned on burglary, 3rd, charges for allegedly breaking into the Church of the Resurrection on Mason Road in Perinton earlier Monday morning. The allegedly stolen Jeep was reportedly seen fleeing from the scene after deputies responded to a burglary alarm.

More from the Democrat and Chronicle.

January 18, 2011 - 10:40am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day.

The Enchanted Florist, 202 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: What better way to brighten your home or office for the holidays than with flowers? We have a $20 gift certificate for $9.50.

Stafford Trading Post, 6173 Main Road, Stafford, NY: Lunch or dinner, Stafford Trading Post offers a variety of fresh, homemade meals, as well as snacks and drinks. Now in a new, expanded location. We have a $25 gift card for $12.50.

Clor's Meat Market, 4169 W. Main St. Road, Batavia, NY: For the best, most flavorful, juiciest chicken or hamburger in town, hands down, stop by Clor's. Oh, and the steaks are great, too. And the sausage. Clor's also serves lunch and dinners from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. We have a $20 gift card for $10.

Kravings, Valu Plaza, 4152 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Kraving's offers soups, salads and sandwiches, fresh and flavorful; Monday through Saturday. We have $10 gift certificates for $5.

Blue Pearl Yoga, 200 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: Exercise your soul as well as your body in a friendly and relaxing atmosphere. We have a gift certificate for three weeks of yoga, 3 classes, a $30 value, for $15.

Alli's Cones & Dogs, 7063 Lewiston Road, Oakfield, NY: Full breakfast, lunch and dinner menu; new all-you-can-eat salad bar; ice cream served year-round; eat-in or take-out. We have $20 gift certificates for $10.

Matty's Pizzeria, 4152 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Matty's, a great place for pizza, wings, subs -- eat in, take out or delivery. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.

Scratch Bakery, 24 Main St. Le Roy, NY: A real bakery right in Genesee County. Scones, cookies, cakes, breads, rolls and more. Call ahead, 297-2441, for availability or special orders. We have $10 gift certificates for $5.

Settler's Restaurant, 353 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Settler's has a 25-year history of serving great, affordable breakfasts, lunches and dinners to Batavians. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.

NOTE: If you've never bought Deal of the Day before, or are otherwise unfamiliar with the rules and process, click here.

January 17, 2011 - 7:16pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Oakfield, Darien, Le Roy, Pavilion.

Rebecca A. Chatley, 19, of 61 Mill St., Le Roy, is charged with grand larceny, 4th. Chatley is accused of going through the purses of fellow employees at a business in the Village of Le Roy. When confronted, Chatley was allegedly found in possession of another employee's debit card. Chatley was released on an unspecified amount of bail.

Melissa Ann Peterson, 25, of Jackson Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. A complainant reported on Dec. 22 that Peterson failed to return a set of keys. Peterson reportedly denied repeatedly having the keys, stating adamantly, according to a Sheriff's Office release, that she returned the keys.  Peterson then later turned the keys over to the Sheriff's Office.

Summer Ogden, 34, of Ellicott Street, Batavia, who has a previous conviction for criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd, is charged with resisting arrest, attempted criminal mischief, 4th, and criminal tampering, 3rd. Ogden was reportedly being held in Wyoming County Jail for an unrelated incident. A warrant was issued for her out of Town of Batavia Court on the listed charges. (Previous Reports)

Assante Darrell Huggins, 18, of Brunswick Boulevard, Buffalo, is charged with petit larceny. Huggins was arrested on a Darien Town Court warrant following his release from the Erie County Holding Center on an unrelated charge. Huggins was jailed on $500 bail.

Kipa Luii Limonti, 39, of Roebling Avenue, Buffalo, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana, aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd, and no vehicle inspection. Limonti's vehicle was stopped by a State Trooper for alleged traffic violations at 12:40 p.m., Jan. 3, on Park Road, Batavia. The vehicle allegedly had a 2009 inspection sticker and a bald front right tire. Deputy Brian Thompson provided backup for the trooper and his K-9 "Pharaoh" allegedly alerted on the vehicle and Limonti was allegedly found in possession a small amount of marijuana.

Phylicia L. M. Carey, 18, of North Street, Le Roy, is charged with DWI, and driving with a BAC of .18 or greater. Carey was reportedly involved in a two-car accident on Church Street. Carey's car reportedly hit a parked car and then a utility pole. Carey was arrested by Le Roy Police.

Dennis Kaijage Stambuli, 18, of Sutton Park Road, Poughkeepsie, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Stambuli was allegedly found in possession of marijuana by Deputy Kevin McCarthy, who responded to a complaint of a loud party in the Village of Oakfield at 9 p.m., Jan. 14. A 17-year-old was arrested and charged with unlawful possession of marijuana at the same time.

Angela Maria Draper, 34, of Transit Road, Pavilion, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, and moving from lane unsafely. Draper was allegedly involved in a one-car accident at 2:47 a.m., Saturday, on Route 63. Her car reportedly went into a ditch and struck a mailbox. The accident was investigated by Deputy Howard Carlson.

Scott E. Clark, 49, of 172 1/2 South Main St., Batavia, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and speed not reasonable. Clark was reportedly involved in an accident at 10:30 p.m., Friday, on Ellicott Avenue near Washington Avenue, Batavia. Clark's car reportedly slid into a curb and rode up the guide wire of a utility pole, coming to rest on its side. Clark was not injured in the accident. (Initial Report)

January 17, 2011 - 3:24pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, volunteers.


Volunteers from RSVP and Americorps were at the Batavia Senior Center today to make blankets to donate to the Agri-Business Child Development Center. Volunteers were also asked to make greeting cards for military personnel.

Above from left, Darian Ely, of RSVP, Loren Penman and Kellie Fairchild work together to make a blanket.

January 17, 2011 - 3:15pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, YWCA.


About 70 people were on hand at the YWCA on North Street today to honor Martin Luther King Jr. and give tribute to his legacy.

Alex Nesbeth, below, read King's "I Have a Dream" speech. Above, Grace Marthrel sings a gospel song with Raymond Doward on piano. After the jump, another picture of Marthrel and Doward as well as one of Marthrel singing with her daughter, Lashonna Mims.

Marthrel gave an outstanding gospel performance. She said she sings regularly at the Prayer Room Church of Christ on North Lyon.


January 17, 2011 - 3:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, photos, weather.


It's been a beautiful day, even if a bit cold -- my truck's thermostat read 8 degrees this morning. Too much work to do today to get out and shoot a lot of pictures, but still taking advantage of the nice sky.

Above the white barn of Partridge Farm on Ellicott Street Road and below, the cement plant of Bonsal American on Cedar Street.

Weather through tonight, cloudy, with a chance of snow overnight. Tomorrow, warming considerably (into the 30s) with an 80-percent chance of rain, and then back to snow on Thursday.


January 17, 2011 - 2:42pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, accident.

A two-car accident is tying up traffic a bit in the area of 375 W. Main St., Batavia.

It is believed there are no injuries, though there are unknown type fluids leaking from at least one car.

City Fire and Mercy EMS dispatched.

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January 17, 2011 - 12:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day.

South Beach, 59 Main St., Batavia, NY: Try the new lunch buffet. We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.50 (must be used by Feb. 28, 2011).

Margarita's Mexican Restaurant, 15 Jackson St., Batavia, NY: When you're looking for an authentic Mexican meal, Margarita's is the place to go. The food and atmosphere are perfect and the service is always outstanding. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.

Batavia Downs Grandstand Bar & Grille, 8315 Park Road, Batavia, NY: A full menu, salad bar and drinks in one of the region's most popular entertainment venues. We have $25 gift certificates for $12.50. (Must be new or current Players Club member to redeem.)

T.F. Brown's, at 214 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: T.F. Brown's is a great place for a good meal, good friends and to catch up on what's going on in the sports world. "If it happens in sports, it happens at Brown's." We have a $20 gift card for $10.

Settler's Restaurant, 353 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Settler's has a 25-year history of serving great, affordable breakfasts, lunches and dinners to Batavians. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.

Red Osier, Route 5, Stafford, NY: Truly, one of the landmark restaurants of the area. Red Osier features prime rib carved table side. We have $25 gift certificates for $12.50.

Alex's Place, 8322 Park Road, Batavia, NY: People come from all over the region for a fine dining experience at Alex's. It's best known for its ribs, of course, but Alex's seafood is also a favorite of the restaurant's diners. We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.50.

Center Street Smoke House, 20 Center St., Batavia, NY: Authentic Southern BBQ, from ribs to brisket with all the fixin's. We have a $20 gift card for $10.

The Daily Grind, 85 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: For Batavia's finest coffee, smoothies, as well as fast and convenient breakfasts and lunches, stop into The Daily Grind. We have a $10 gift card for $5.

Delavan's Restaurant and Tavern, 107 Evans St., Batavia, NY: To me, Delavan's is one of those restaurants where you want to eat frequently until you try everything on the menu. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.

NOTE: If you've never bought Deal of the Day before, or are otherwise unfamiliar with the rules and process, click here.


January 16, 2011 - 4:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, youth, sports, hockey, Harvester Avenue.


Area youngsters were able to get in a little hockey practice today on Harvester Avenue, where resident Kevin Hamilton built a small hockey rink. Hamilton, who coaches two youth hockey teams, said he constructed the rink out of a wood frame, a plastic sheet base and slowly builds up the ice over time, adding a little water over several days.

January 16, 2011 - 3:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, business, terry hills, Bridal Show.


Organizers were pleased with the early turn out at the debut Bridal Show at Terry Hills today. Vendors from Genesee County were on hand to display for prospective brides, grooms and their parents what they offer to ensure the special day remains special.

The show continues until 4 p.m. For more information, click here.

Above, Steve Valle talks with customers about what Valle Jewelers has to offer.


More pictures after the jump:

January 16, 2011 - 10:42am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, arts, theater, entertainment, WNY Arts Society.

An original Broadway cast member of "RENT," Gwen Stewart, was back in Batavia this weekend, making a side trip while visiting friends in Buffalo, to catch the local performance of the hit musical. Stewart joined the WNY Arts Society cast on stage for one of the production numbers.

WNYAS's final performance of "RENT" is today at 2 at the Ross Street Performing Arts Center, Batavia Middle School, 96 Ross St., Batavia.

The Batavian still has a few specially discounted tickets available. Click here for more information.

January 15, 2011 - 6:31pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, thruway.

A car is reportedly on fire on the Thruway near mile marker 397.4.

It appears the car is in an eastbound lane, though at least a couple of callers have said westbound.

East Pembroke Fire is responding.

UPDATE 6:37 p.m.: A chief on scene reports a fully involved car fire.

January 15, 2011 - 4:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in photos, weather.


We've had pretty steady snowfall today, but nothing to the level that would warrant the National Weather Service to put out an alert or an advisory. Intermittent snow showers are expected to continue into the evening.

The weather seems to have contributed to a number of fender-benders this afternoon.

I went out to Le Roy today and on the route back, I came down Randall Road.


January 15, 2011 - 3:17pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Bethany.

A car has hit a pole in the area of Ellicott Street Road and Transit Road.

There is airbag deployment, but no word yet on injuries.

Bethany Fire and Mercy EMS dispatched.

UPDATE 3:25: Correction, Mercy EMS not dispatched. Chief at scene says he should be all set.

January 15, 2011 - 8:52am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day.

We have a limited number of ticket pairs available for this weekend's production of "RENT." The regular price is $30 a pair and we're offering reserved seat tickets for $15 a pair (plus a $1 service fee).

"RENT" is presented by WNY Arts Society at 7:30 p.m. on Jan. 13-15 and at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Jan. 16 at the Ross Street Performing Arts Center at Batavia Middle School. This cutting-edge musical tells the story of a group of impoverished young artists struggling to survive in New York City.

Readers who take advantage of this special offer will redeem their PayPal receipt at the door to claim their tickets. This offer is valid for any of the four performances. The box office opens one hour before showtime and the house opens 30 minutes prior to showtime.

January 15, 2011 - 1:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in photos, Le Roy.


Ryan Rast, of South Street in Le Roy, stands next to a giant snowman he built in his front yard with his buddy Ben Long.

January 14, 2011 - 8:43pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy.

A Le Roy man accused of making at least one sexually explicit video involving a minor isn't being held in jail because of the case's individual circumstances, said the Le Roy Police Department detective who made the arrest.

Det. John Condidorio said it was his recommendation that Stephen M. Smith be released to the supervision of Genesee Justice following his arraignment in Le Roy Town Court on charges of possessing a sexual performance by a child, promoting sexual performance of a child and use of a child in a sexual performance.

The detective said such decisions are rendered on a singular basis and the law.

"Each case needs to be looked at individually and it's totally (up to) the police department, the district attorney's office and the courts," Condidorio said.

It is the "looking at the totality of the case" that explains, Condidorio said, why Smith's case wasn't referred to federal authorities, and why supervision by Genesee Justice while the charges are pending fits the circumstances.

Smith, however, may yet face statutory rape charges once State Police detectives complete their own investigation.

The video, or videos, allegedly involving a minor from Le Roy, were not made in the Village of Le Roy. Condidorio jurisdiction is confined to the village.

Meanwhile, a person who has identified herself as Smith's girlfriend, who is also the minor child who may have been involved in the videos, has left comments on Facebook and sent an e-mail to The Batavian defending Smith.

The girl said Smith is embarrassed by the charges and upset by reading accounts of the case in the media.

She said she's known Smith since 2006 and they've been involved in a relationship since Aug. 24, 2008. She said he is the father of her 8-month-old child.

"I'm writing because I am concerned with what was stated in the posts about Stephen's charges," the girl wrote. "I fully understand that what I have to say most likely won't matter to anyone because people will judge him because of this no matter what is said or isn't said. That is fine, because anyone that KNOWS him on a personal level, knows that he is not some sick predator."

The girl writes that Smith used a camera that had been given to her as a present and indicates that making the video or videos was her idea.

She said she left the camera at Smith's residence unintentionally and it was seized when detectives searched the place.

"I had Stephen call the day after they confiscated our things and informed them that there was going to be inappropriate content on my camera," she wrote.

Condidorio said he couldn't discuss the content of the girl's Facebook post or even confirm that the victim was female.

He said he was prohibited from discussing the case in detail and could only talk in general terms about how similar cases are handled.

"It is our policy in the police department to try and protect victims of any crime as much as possible," Condidorio said. "But it is still a free country and it is not our policy to try and control the actions of victims."

Even though the girl sees herself as somebody who is in a relationship with the accused, at 16 or 17, under New York state law, she is not old enough to consent to sexual relations.

Besides the alleged video involving the girl, Smith is also accused of using a video file sharing service to pass along and download videos involving other minor children engaged in sexual activity.

The type of service Smith is accused of using is called peer-to-peer, which means users install software that allows them to share the contents of specific folders on their own hard drives.

The case was brought to the attention of Le Roy Police when New York State Police Computers Crime Unit notified the Le Roy Police Department that a person at 41 Elm St. in Le Roy allegedly possessed, and was sharing sexual videos of, underage children via the Internet.

Condidorio stressed that there is no evidence that Smith shared video involving the alleged local victim in this case.

The girl said she and Smith were upset when the case was first reportedly publicly.

"It sincerely made me nauseous and shaky when I first read this article on Wednesday night -- to know that the reputation of someone you love has been destroyed for something blown so far out of proportion," the girl wrote.

"And to know that he would be viewed in a disgusting way by the public. The look on Stephen's face when he read this article was unexplainable. I have never felt how I have these past few days."

January 14, 2011 - 7:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

mug_ron_smith.jpgAn 18-year-old Batavia man accused of engaging in sexual activity with a child under 11 years old is less than four months removed from being released from custody on similar charges.

Ronald Smith, of 679 E. Main St., Batavia, was let out of state prison in October as a Level 3 sex offender.

Smith was previously convicted of engaging in sexual activity with girls ages 8 and 9. He was a Genesee County resident at the time of his arrest. He was convicted in March 2008 and sentenced to one to three years in prison.

Upon his release in October, Smith moved to an apartment on Thorpe Street and registered his address with authorities.

In November, Batavia Police sent a notice to residents in the area around Thorpe that a Level 3 sex offender was in their midst.

The address listed was a residence managed by Jeremy Yasses of J.P. Properties. Yasses said residents contacted him immediately about Smith living in one of his dwellings.

He had no idea Smith had moved in with a friend who was a tenant of an apartment.

The day after being notified, Yasses, who manages several properties on Thorpe, demanded that Smith vacate the residence. When he followed up with police, Yasses said he was told that Smith had moved to Oakfield.

"I don't want to live next to them and I don't expect my tenants to live next to them," Yasses said of Level 3 sex offenders. "I wouldn't ask my tenants to live next to anybody I wouldn't live next to myself."

At the time of his arrest today, Smith was, according to police, located at a residence at 679 E. Main St. in Batavia. He was also charged with failure to register his current address, as required by a registered sex offender.

Det. Kevin Czora said the recent allegations that Smith engaged in sexual conduct with a child under 11 were brought to police attention by a parent of the victim.

Smith was jailed on $25,000 bail.

(Initial Post)




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Contact: Howard Owens, publisher (howard (at) the batavian dot com); (585) 250-4118

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