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December 28, 2009 - 4:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather.

A heavy band of lake effect snow is hanging around northern Erie and Genesee Counties longer than expected, according to the National Weather Service, which has upgraded its storm watch from an advisory to a warning.

The Buffalo NWS office says the storm is moving slow and will dump more snow on the region -- up to seven inches, especially from Buffalo and Oakfield southward.

The lake effect snow will shift to the south some time after 7 p.m. when an Arctic front moves through the region.  That front will bring gusts up to 40 mph and rapidly falling temperatures.

The warning is effect until 9 p.m.

December 28, 2009 - 4:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in thruway, weather.

pembroke_thruway_weather.jpgReader Janice Stenman sends the following report:

We just returned from Eastern Hills Mall via Thruway. Traffic moved at between 15-20 MPH. It took us over an hour to drive between Depew and the Pembrooke exit.

From the Thruway Cam pic I just grabbed (right), the Pembroke section of Thruway looks uncongested, though visibility looks low.

Be careful out there.

December 28, 2009 - 12:39pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in GCASA, marijuana.

In a blog post, GCASA's executive director David Markham muses that perhaps society would be better off if marijuana were legal and taxed.

But it's no libertarian turn by Markham. He also suggests that the legal drinking age should be raised to 35.

Markham cites a recent study that looks at the benefitial impact of drinkers and drug users substituting cannabis.

I found this study interesting because I have observed the use of cannabis in my private practice clients who often report beneficial effects. It seems to me that cannabis is less toxic and has fewer behavioral and social negative consequences than alcohol. I have also noted that cannabis seems to have fewer adverse side effects and better symptom relief than prescription drugs.

December 28, 2009 - 12:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather.


Winds and lake effect snow is drifting into Genesee County, which has prompted the National Weather Service in Buffalo to issue a winter storm advisory through 10 a.m. tomorrow.

While snow accumulation will be measured only in inches, the cold blast, wind and wet white stuff blowing around could make road travel more difficult.

The sharp cold front is expected to hit Batavia this afternoon. Wind gusts could reach 40 mph.

The quick drop in temperatures could cause road ice to develop quickly.

This is an advisory from the NWS, which means the storm is not expected to be big, just big enough to encourage extra caution.

UPDATE 12:14 p.m.: County road crews report heavy snow in the southern part of the county. "It's a different world down here," said one.

UPDATE 12:55 p.m.: Here's a shot of what downtown is looking like about now.


UPDATE 2:27 p.m.: A report out of Pembroke: Conditions deteriorating. Visibility greatly diminished.

December 28, 2009 - 10:20am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

A Batavia woman is the first person in Western New York charged with an enhanced felony DWI under a new statute that took effect Dec. 18 known as "Leandra's Law."

The law turns a misdemeanor DWI into a felony DWI if children are in the car.

Michelle T. Crawford, 24, was reportedly picked up by State Police in the Town of Marilla in Erie County.

Troopers were alerted Sunday afternoon to a domestic dispute in the Town of West Seneca in which the woman involved drove away with her three children, and she was reportedly agitated and had been drinking. The initial report had her heading back to Batavia.

Shortly after the initial report reached State Police, a trooper spotted a vehicle matching the description of the one that left West Seneca on Clinton Street near Two Rod Road.

Following a traffic stop, Crawford was charged with felony DWI, three counts of endangering the welfare of a child and other traffic offenses. Crawford allegedly refused a breath test.

She was jailed in the Erie County Holding Center on $25,000 bail.

The children, ages 4, 3 and 17 months, were picked up by a relative.

December 28, 2009 - 10:03am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Tracy Avenue.

Police now have a suspect in the case of shots fired on Tracy Avenue last Wednesday. It's the same person they've been looking for all along; he's now formally a suspect.

And he's also suspected of stealing a truck from Western NY Concrete on East Main Street prior to the shooting.

The truck was found on Ellicott Avenue about three hours after the shooting, according to Det. Richard Schauf, and police believe it's the same truck used by the alleged shooter on Wednesday. The truck is being checked for evidence.

There's no new information available on the suspect.

Police are also not saying how many shots were fired, just that several hit the car.

Detectives now want to talk to a third person they believe was in the car with the two 18-year-olds mentioned in previous reports. The third person is male and a teenager. He has not made himself available for an interview. It's not believed he was wounded during the attack.

Law enforcement agencies throughout Western New York have been advised to be on the lookout for the shooting suspect.

Police also continue to try and retrace the steps of the occupants of the car in an attempt to further the case.

December 28, 2009 - 9:35am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, accident.

The condition of a boy hit by a car on Washington Avenue last Wednesday has improved, according to Det. Richard Schauf of the Batavia Police Department.

Thirteen-year-old James Difalco is now listed in stable condition at Buffalo Women's and Children's Hospital, Schauf said this morning.

Difalco sustained a head injury when he reportedly ran into the street and was hit by a car. The driver has not been charged.

December 28, 2009 - 9:21am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Le Roy.

A Caledonia woman driving on Route 5 in Le Roy on Friday morning said she served to avoid a possible head-on collision, causing her car to travel off the opposite shoulder and hit a dumpster.

Cinthia Mae Seppe, 50, of 13 Birch Lane, suffered an internal injury and was transported around 11 a.m. to UMMC by ambulance.

The driver of the other vehicle is not known.

Seppe was westbound on Route 5 near Kenney Road at the time of the accident. She was driving a 1996 Chevrolet sedan.

The accident was investigated by Deputy Jason Diehl.


December 28, 2009 - 9:06am
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Le Roy, Stafford.

A Stafford man suffered a broken arm in an accident 2:43 a.m. Thursday after reportedly running his car off the road in Le Roy.

John Richenberg, 20, of 8891 Fargo Road, was charged with DWI.

Richenberg was reportedly eastbound on Route 5 when his car went off the south shoulder. The 2002 Ford SUV he was driving reportedly struck a small tree, then a larger tree and then a telephone pole.

December 28, 2009 - 8:56am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Pavilion.

Joel Moreles-Cruz, 35, of 13 Jackson St., Apt. 2B, Batavia, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and unlicensed operation. Moreles-Cruz was stopped by officer Darryle Streeter at 1:54 a.m. on Christmas on Ellicott Street after police received a report that Moreles-Cruz was allegedly driving without a license.

Sharnice S. Gibson, 18, of 21 Wood St., Batavia, is charged with criminal attempt in the 1st degree. Gibson allegedly approached a woman she was barred from contacting and threatened her.

Steven Michael Chauncy, 19, of 10637 Pavilion Center Road, Pavilion, is charged with unlawful dealing with a child in the 1st degree. Chauncy is accused of hosting an under-age drinking party. He was arrested at 2:30 a.m. on Saturday.

Travis G. Hawley, 18, of Bergen, is charged with an alcohol control violation and petit larceny. Hawley was arrested by State Police for an alleged violation on Dec. 4. No further details were released.

December 28, 2009 - 8:39am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

Batavia Police are looking into a report that somebody broke into a construction trailer at 16 Bank St. and made himself a pot of coffee.

There is photographic evidence.

The suspect may be a homeless man asked to move along from the Post Office building yesterday.

Nothing, other than some coffee, appears to be missing from the construction trailer.

December 28, 2009 - 8:34am
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather.

Three days after Christmas, and now we're getting snow.

After a couple of inches of snow overnight, more snow is expected this morning, and this afternoon and tonight up to three inches of lake effect snow is expected to fall.

And it will get colder tonight and tomorrow, with temperatures falling to 10 degrees with a high tomorrow of 14 degrees.

Tonight, also expect wind. The west winds will blow 15 to 25 mph with gusts up to 40 mph.

There is snow forecast throughout the week, with chances of snow ranging from 40 percent to 80 percent.

December 28, 2009 - 8:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day.

Carlson's Studio, 39 Jackson St., Batavia, NY: Family photos are more than just photographs. When you need photos for that special occasion, Carlson's is a great choice in Genesee County. We have a $150 gift card for $75 (+$2 PayPal Service fee).

Kravings Kafe, Valu Plaza, W. Main Street, Batavia, NY: Recently opened, it offers soups, salads and sandwiches, fresh and flavorful; Monday through Saturday. We have $10 gift certificates for $5.

Jackson St. Grill/Belladessa's, 9 Jackson St., Batavia, NY: When it's time for a great hamburger, Jackson St. Grill will serve you among the best around. We have a $10 gift certificate for $5.

The Color Salon, 35 Center St., Batavia, NY: Susan Francis, the owner and stylist at The Color Salon reminds women, "your hair is your greatest accessory." Francis has more than 20 years of experience helping women get the best hair color. We have a $50 gift certificate for $25.

South Main Country Gifts, 3356 Main St. Road, Batavia, NY: Handcrafted items, gifts with a regional flair, candles, teas and spices -- South Main has a wide selection to please most any interest. 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.

December 27, 2009 - 9:17am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, accident.

A 20-year-old driver involved in a 4 a.m. one-vehicle accident in Batavia is in very serious condition at Erie County Medical Center, according to a hospital spokeswoman.

Eslie J. Worthington, III, 20, was driving a 1998 Dodge Ram pickup westbound on Batavia-Oakfield Townline Road when the truck traveled off the south shoulder and struck a culvert.

Worthington was the only person in the truck. He sustained head injuries and was taken to ECMC by Mercy Flight.

The Sheriff Office reports that the investigation is ongoing, but that "alcohol appears to be a factor." Charges are pending.

The investigation is being conducted by Deputy Jason Saile, with deputies Kevin McCarthy and Frank Bordonaro along with investigator Timothy Weis and Sgt. William Scott of the Crash Management Team.

December 26, 2009 - 11:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in weather.

After a couple of somewhat warm days of rain, scanner reports say the roads are icing over tonight.

Fargo Road in Stafford has been reported as "pure ice."

There's a good likelihood of snow on Sunday with an accumulation of 1 to 2 inches, and Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday all have some snow forecast currently.

December 26, 2009 - 7:44pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, Pavilion.

After a report of a large plume of smoke at Hanson Aggregates in Pavilion, a fire alarm went out for both Pavilion and Le Roy fire departments.

Once the the plume was discovered to be a Dumpster fire, Le Roy was ordered to stand down.

View Larger Map

December 26, 2009 - 6:39pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, Alabama.

A woman who possibly had a stroke while driving on Route 77 on Christmas Day remains in critical, but stable condition at Erie County Medical Center.

A spokesman for ECMC said the condition of Jean E. Germonte, 75, of 105 Sawyer Ave., Depew, "remains unchanged."

At 12:20 p.m on Friday, Germonte was reportedly driving her 2006 Chevrolet sedan southbound on Route 77 when callers reported a car fitting that description operating erratically. Deputy Loni Nati found the car on Route 77 allegedly going 10 mph in the northbound lane.

Nati called for State Police to block off the intersection at Route 77 and the Thruway overpass. During the incident, Nati reported Germonte's car slowing to 5 mph. It then reportedly hit a guardrail before driving into a snow bank.

Mercy EMS responded and requested that Mercy Flight be dispatched to the scene. Germonte was then flown to ECMC.

December 26, 2009 - 6:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Announcements, Batavia Lions Club.

cctv_lions_augello.jpgThe Batavia Lions Club has purchased a device that helps people with severe eyesight problems see better -- well enough to read a  book or continue with favorite hobbies.

The first person to get to use the device is Tamara Augello of Elba. Augello lost sight in her right eye due to complications from diabetes. While she relies on her left eye to see, that eye has been losing its vision.

The Lions Club has loaned her a $3,300 machine called a Topaz CCTV. It magnifies items, such as books, so that people using the machine can see to read.

Augello also enjoys needlepoint and the machine will help her complete some projects she's been working on.

“Not only can I read any book I choose, but also, my little grandson can sit on my lap while I read him all the books he loves," Augello told the club in a letter.

Half the cost of the machine was covered by a grant from the New York State and Bermuda Lions Foundation MD-20 Grant Program, and the remaining funds for the purchase were raised by local club members.

In a statement, the club said:

We wish Tamara many years of enjoyment as she uses this equipment to again do what she loves. We also encourage local people with special vision needs to contact the Batavia Lions Club. It is our goal to work hard to provide assistance to the visually impaired in our area.

December 26, 2009 - 5:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Deal of the Day.

Great Kutz, in the Valu Plaza, 4152 W. Main St. Road, Batavia, NY: Men, enjoy a $5 haircut again with this offer exclusive to The Batavian. (gift card can be applied toward other services, but not products).

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.

Carlson's Studio, 39 Jackson St., Batavia, NY: Family photos are more than just photographs. When you need photos for that special occasion, Carlson's is a great choice in Genesee County. We have a $150 gift card for $75 (+$2 PayPal Service fee).

Center Street Smoke House, 20 Center St., Batavia, NY: Authentic Southern BBQ, from ribs to brisket with all the fixin's. We have a $25 gift card for $12.50.

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 a seven-week  session (one class per week), which is a $56 value, for $28.

The Mane Attraction, 99 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: The Mane Attraction is a spa and salon offering pedicures, manicures, hair styling and massage. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.

Belladessa's Pizzeria/Jackson St. Grill, 9 Jackson St., Batavia, NY: Here's a deal -- half off on a Family Meal Deal from Belladessa's, which is a large 1 topping pizza, 24 wings and 2-liter bottle of soda. It's a $25 value for $12.50.

Main St. Pizza Company, 206 E. Main St., Batavia, NY: Pizza, wings, subs and even hamburgers and hot dogs, Main St. Pizza makes everything deliciously. We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.50.

Present Tense Books and Gifts, 101 Washington Ave., Batavia, NY: Whether your taste runs to local authors, the finest in fiction or nonfiction or you're looking for a unique and special gift, this charming store in a cozy Victorian house on the edge of downtown is a great place to stop and shop. We have a $25 gift certificate for $12.50.

Kravings Kafe, Valu Plaza, W. Main Street, Batavia, NY: Recently opened, it offers soups, salads and sandwiches, fresh and flavorful; Monday through Saturday. We have $10 gift certificates for $5.

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.

Matty's Pizzeria, 4152 W. Main St., Batavia, NY: Matty's is another Batavia favorite for pizza and wings. We have a $20 gift certificate for $10.

Sallome's Italian Deli, 40 Oak St., Batavia, NY: Wraps, subs, paninis and pasta as well as pizzas -- Sallome's offers a tasty variety of Italian deli items for eat-in or take-out.

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




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

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