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June 23, 2011 - 7:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in photos, Bethany.

The view from West Bethany Road as our late afternoon storm rolled in.

June 23, 2011 - 6:15pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Dewitt Park.

The current water level in the lake at Dewitt Park on Cedar Street is six inches above the highest level ever recorded previously, according to Paul Osborn, parks supervisor.

The previous record was 1997. Measurements were not taken prior to 1995.

Osborn said water levels rose nine feet in two months.

How much the water level drops over the course of the summer, Osborn said, depends on how much rain we get. Typically, he said, the water level can drop two or three feet during the summer.

For comparison sake, below is a picture of the same dock as above taken last summer.

June 23, 2011 - 3:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

Carlos A. Torres Jr., 35, who first made the news after showing up at UMMC with gunshot wounds and claiming he was shot while on Little Indian Falls Road, is now accused of dealing drugs. He entered a not guilty plea on those charges in Genesee County Court today.

Torres, who is being held on $25,000 bail, was indicted in early June on three counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd.

He was arrested April 1 by members of the Local Drug Enforcement Task Force.

He was found to allegedly be driving under the influence of drugs and allegedly carrying cocaine, crack and heroin with an estimated street value of more than $7,000. 

At the time of his arrest, the head of the task force characterized the alleged drug dealing by Torres as pretty significant.

"The weight of the powder cocaine, along with the number of bags of both crack and heroin, on top of his $4,000 (in cash), is significant for this county," Sgt. Steve Mullen said.

Torres came to the attention of investigators in May 2010 when he showed up at UMMC with gunshot wounds.

June 23, 2011 - 3:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

A Batavia resident who tried to steal alcohol from a home on Washington Avenue on May 15, and when unsuccessful came back with a gun, entered a guilty plea in Genesee County Court today to a charge of attempted burglary, 2nd.

Andrew J. Rock, 24, of 206 State St., Batavia, faces a possible prison sentence of three (the minimum allowed as a second felony offender) to seven years.

He will be sentenced Aug. 4.

Rock is currently being held in Genesee County Jail on $50,000 bail.

Previously: State Street resident accused of trying to steal booze on Washington Avenue.

June 23, 2011 - 3:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

A 41-year-old Batavia man accused of stealing $58,000 from an elderly woman entered a plea of not guilty today during his arraignment in Genesee County Court.

Myron W. Hartford is out of jail under supervision of Genesee Justice.

He is charged with grand larceny, 2nd, grand larceny, 4th, and three counts of offering a false instrument for filing, 1st. 

Hartford and his wife, Marline, were both indicted on the alleged left from the elderly woman and both are accused of stealing $1,000 from DSS.

Marline did not appear in court today.

A hearing on pre-trial motions in Hardford's case was set for Aug. 31.

For previous coverage, click here.

June 23, 2011 - 3:13pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Ellicott Street, Liberty Street.

Even though it's only been a handful of months since Ellicott Street was repaved, crews were working at several intersections today putting down new asphalt. A supervisor told me the previous "new" asphalt was removed because the state determined it was "too rough."

June 23, 2011 - 3:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, pembroke, little falls.

A suspect who fled from law enforcement following an attempted traffic stop on Little Indian Falls Road, Pembroke, on Wednesday was eventually cornered by K-9 "Pharoah," who found the man hiding behind a fallen tree.

Chief Deputy Gordon Dibble said Pharoah, who was off leash and ran ahead of his handler, Deputy Brian Thompson, did exactly what he is trained to do. He barked. He didn't bite.

"He barked in his face and as long as he (the suspect) didn't do anything stupid, Pharoah isn't going to do anything but just hold him there," Dibble said.

Taken into custody was Robert Leiser, 42, an Oakfield man that both troopers and deputies on scene yesterday said they've had many dealings with and knew he would turn up eventually.

The initial search for Leiser included a State Police helicopter, but that search, which lasted more than an hour, was called off at around 1:45 p.m.

Thompson was one of the last members of law enforcement -- the search initially included three state troopers, two deputies and a DEC officer -- to leave the Little Falls area. Just as he was leaving, a resident of the area reported spotting the suspect in his back yard.

That resident reportedly grabbed a gun and chased the suspect off his property, but the encounter helped Thompson narrow his search area. 

He let Pharoah off leash and searched for at least another hour and was just about to call off the search for a second time when Pharoah found Leiser.

Leiser was taken into custody by Trooper Holly Hanssel, who initiated the traffic stop on Little Falls Road that began the manhunt, and charged with aggravated unlicensed operation, 2nd, possession of a hypodermic instrument and resisting arrest.

Bail was set at $5,000 and if Leiser makes bail he will be turned over immediately to authorities in Ontario County where he is wanted on two warrants.

At the time of the traffic stop Leiser was observed with a female passenger whom he may be barred from contacting. The state police are investigating a possible criminal contempt charge.

June 23, 2011 - 2:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, photos, trees.

Driving down West Main late this morning, I was struck by this stunning tree with its white flowers against the deep-blue sky.

Once again, I have no idea of the name of this type of tree.

I took several photos.

June 23, 2011 - 1:20pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Darien, Le Roy, corfu.

Brandon Alan Eisenberg, 27, of Village Gate, Williamsville, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell, criminal possession of marijuana, three counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and inhalation of toxic gas (Nitrous Oxide). On June 8, Eisenberg was initially charged with criminal possession of marijuana, 4th, and now these new charges have been added. Eisenberg was arrested in Darien.

Alysasa Marie Lori, 19, of Roe Drive, Cheektowaga, is charged with aggravated harassment, 2nd. Lori is accused of continuing to make harassing phone calls and sending text messages to a person after being warned by that person, a Corfu resident, and police to cease the communications.

A 16-year-old from East Main Street, Le Roy, is charged with false personation. The youth is accused of providing a false identity to police during an investigation of an alleged underage drinking party at 1:04 a.m., June 5, at 98 North St., Le Roy.

June 23, 2011 - 12:03am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Batavia Concert Band, photos, Centennial Park.

The Batavia Concert Band performed in Centennial Park, Batavia, on Wednesday evening. Wayne Burlison conducted.

Click Here to purchase quality, affordable prints of these photos.

More pictures after the jump:

June 22, 2011 - 11:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in photos, pembroke, indian falls.

There was a big turn out this evening at the United Methodist Church in Indian Falls for the 66th Annual Strawberry Social. The event not only featured some mighty tasty looking deserts, but a chicken dinner, pie sale and auction. A couple hundred people, at least, attended.

June 22, 2011 - 11:42pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in photos, pembroke, indian falls.

You know, it occurred to me yesterday -- I haven't posted a barn picture in a while. So here's one for you. It's off Little Indian Falls Road, Pembroke.

A landscape shot from Meiser Road, Indian Falls.

A historical marker for Gen. Ely Samuel Parker off Sliker Road, Indian Falls. Gen. Parker was born in Indian Falls (he's Seneca Indian) and served in the Civil War. Parker inscribed (based on Gen. Grant's writing) the terms of surrender at Appomattox. (Wikipedia)

June 22, 2011 - 4:29pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

Police are in the area of Tops Market looking for a pair of shoplifting suspects.

The first is a black male who is believed to have run into Tops. The second is a white female wearing purple shorts who ran out of Tops with a shopping bag filled, allegedly, with merchandise that wasn't paid for. The first suspect allegedly stole a DVD player and/or Playstation from Kmart

We'll update with better descriptions if they are re-transmitted.

June 22, 2011 - 3:46pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Batavia Concert Band, music, entertainment.

There's no rain in the forecast for this evening, so the Batavia Concert Band show will be held at Centennial Park as originally planned, according to Robert Knipe.

Show time is 7 p.m.

June 22, 2011 - 3:35pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, fire.

A caller reports the smell of smoke coming from the basement at 13 Roosevelt Ave., Batavia.

The building is being evacuated.

City Fire Department dispatched.

UPDATE 3:37 p.m.:  City fire on scene. Nothing showing.

UPDATE 4:06 p.m.: City fire has cleared the scene.

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June 22, 2011 - 9:41am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident.

A tractor-trailer has reportedly pulled wires down in the area of 9489 Alexander Road, Alexander.

Alexander Fire Department and law enforcement dispatched to the scene.

UPDATE 9:43 a.m.: An assistant chief on scene reports wires in the road (secondary wires to a residence), pole down, traffic backed up "quite a ways." National Grid being notified.

UPDATE 9:53 a.m.: Traffic closed in both directions, but a chief says, "I don't think we're going to be here long. He (rep from National Grid) is going to cut the wires so we can pull them out of the road."

UPDATE 9:59 a.m.: Route 98 being reopened.

UPDATE 10:13 a.m.: Alexander fire back in service.

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June 21, 2011 - 10:42pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia.

Here's the unofficial tally of today's vote on the $39,366,045 Batavia City Schools budget.


yes   - 561    (58.50%)

no    - 398    (41.50%)

June 21, 2011 - 6:52pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, photos, elba.

Some evenings, we have spectacular clouds and stunning sunsets and I just can't get out to take pictures. Sunday was one such evening. Yesterday, Monday evening, wasn't as lustrous or colorful, but it was still better than average, so I did take a drive.

Above, the transmission lines from a vantage point on Transit Road, Elba.

A view from Watson Road, Elba.

An abandoned Mack truck and dilapidated house on Ridge Road, Elba.

A tractor in a field by a church on Bank Street Road, Batavia.




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