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crime

January 25, 2016 - 3:15pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, pembroke, corfu, scott doll.
   File Photo: Scott Doll

The attorney handling the murder conviction appeal of Scott F. Doll is asking for a hearing on why a Monroe County medical examiner testified during Doll's trial that fingernail clippings were taken and retained from the victim, Joseph Benaquist, when they were not.

Timothy Murphy argued his motion today in Superior Court, but presiding judge Michael F. Pieturszka was full of skeptical questions. 

Repeatedly, in various ways, Pieturszka asked Murphy what would be gained by a hearing when it's already known that the evidence doesn't exist. A hearing isn't going to suddenly produce the evidence, the judge noted.

Murphy argued that is presumably in the best interest of the court to find out why the trial judge -- Robert C. Noonan -- was misled about the existence of the fingernail clippings. Murphy also repeatedly stated that he didn't blame the DA's Office for the missing evidence, but he thinks the ME's Office should explain the now clearly false testimony that the evidence was collected.

At the time of trial, neither the DA nor the defense, led by Paul Cambria, requested DNA evidence from the fingernail clippings. The lack of the evidence was only discovered after Judge Robert C. Noonan, now retired, ordered the Monroe County ME's Office produce it.

Scott LaPoint, a deputy ME, testified in Doll's trial that the evidence is routinely collected and that it was collected in this instance.

Pieturszka asked what the pratical result of a hearing might be since a hearing wouldn't make evidence appear that didn't exist.

"The court is entitled to know why an order was not enforced and fully enforced," Murphy said, arguing that it was in the best interest of the court to find out why false testimony was given and why the ME's Office wasn't able to satisfactorily produce evidence Noonan ordered produced.

The fact that there may have been a third person's DNA at the scene of the crime, on Benaquist's left boot, made the inquiry all the more important, Murphy asserted, but Pieturszka asked whether even that fact was relevant without any idea of how the DNA came to be introduced into the crime scene.

It's an incomplete DNA sample, so a third person cannot be identified with it. There's no indication that, if there was a third person present, it was at the time Benaquist was killed, or if it was on Benaquist's boot prior to the attack, or if it accidently came from an investigator after the fact.

ADA Will Zickl argued that even if Murphy's request had merit, it wasn't related to the motion presently before the court. Zickl said Murphy could bring a new motion to uncover the information he seeks, but the fact that the evidence doesn't exist and can't be produced ends the original motion that prompted the discovery of the mistake.

Murphy also wants hair samples from Benaquist subjected to DNA testing to see if any third-party DNA might be found. But Zickl argued that it was such a bloody crime scene and the hair was covered so thoroughly with Benaquist's blood, there is nothing to be gained by another round of tests.

"The pulled hair samples are not worth the trouble it would take the lab to test it in light of the circumstances," Zickl said.

Pieturszka is reserving his decision until a later date. He gave Murphy two weeks to file a memo supporting his position, and Zickl two weeks after that to produce an answering memo.

Previously: DNA sample can't be matched to 2009 murder victim, nor the man convicted of killing him

Forl all previous coverage of the Scott Doll case, click here.

January 25, 2016 - 6:37am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, Le Roy, pembroke, bergen.

Philip Michael Molina Sr., 30, of Slade Road, Medina, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd, and aggravated unlicensed operation of motor vehicle, 2nd. Molina was arrested following an investigation into a shoplifting complaint at Walmart involving a female companion. Molina was allegedly found in possession of metal knuckles and driving on a suspended driver's license. He was jailed on $15,000 bail or $30,000 bond.

Thomas C. Williamee, 45, of Clay St, Le Roy, is charged with petit larceny. Williamee is accused of shoplifting from Tops Market in Le Roy. He allegedly stole $8.11 in merchandise.

William A. Andrews III, 36, no permanent address, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged aggravated criminal contempt. Andrews allegedly violated a complete stay away order of protection. He is accused of punching the protected party in the face at 1:55 a.m. Aug. 23 while on West Main Street, Batavia.  Andrews charged with another count of aggravated criminal contempt for allegedly being with the protected party at the time of his arrest at 11:23 a.m. Friday. He was jailed on $10,000 bail.

Justin T. Pahl, 31, of Perry Road, Le Roy, is charged with endangering the welfare of a child. Pahl allegedly punched out a window during an incident reported at 8:30 a.m. Friday at a location on Thomas Avenue, Batavia, causing shards of glass to scatter in a room where there were two children, ages 2 and 6.

Amanda R. McDonald, 34, of Pearl Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to pay restitution stemming from a December 2013 incident. McDonald was arraigned and released on her own recognizance with the balance due on her restitution by her next court appearance, March 24.

J'Shon K. Naegely, 19, of Montclair Avenue, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property, 5th. Naegely is accused of possessing and selling a video game console and video games that did not belong to him.

Allison Josephine Minnick, 22, of Maple Ridge Road, Medina, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, moving from lane unsafely, speed not reasonable and prudent. Minnick was arrested following an investigation by Deputy Chad Cummings into a motor-vehicle accident reported at 5:16 a.m. Saturday on Route 262, Byron.

A 17-year-old resident of Judge Road, Alabama, is charged with aggravated harassment, 2nd. The teen allegedly sent threatening text messages to a female victim causing annoyance and alarm. 

Cheryl A. Baker, 32, of Rochester, is charged with forgery, 2nd, falsifying business records, offering for file a false instrument, criminal impersonation, 2nd, and driving on a suspended registration. Baker was arrested by State Police for alleged criminal activity in the Town of Pembroke. She was jailed on $15,000 bail. No further information available at this time.

Matthew D. Chojnacki, 80, of Akron, is charged with DWI. Chojnacki was stopped at 1:23 p.m. Friday on Route 33, Bergen, by State Police.

January 22, 2016 - 7:10am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, pembroke.
mug_roth_terry2016.jpg mug_hamill_michelle2016.jpg
     Terry Roth      Michelle Hamill

Terry M. Roth, 40, and Michelle Hamill, 48, both of Batavia, are charged with third-degree grand larceny. Roth is also charged with second-degree forgery. Hamill is accused of stealing a credit card from the wallet of an elderly victim who was under her care as a healthcare aide in the victim's residence. The victim is presently under 24-hour care. Roth, accompanied by Hamill, allegedly made $23,000 in unauthorized purchases in Genesee, Erie and Monroe counties. These alleged purchases were documented through surveillance video at the stores, according to State Police. Roth was jailed on $25,000 bail. Hamill was released under supervision of Genesee Justice.

Kyle Robert Ratulowski, 19, of Elenore Place, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Ratulowski is accused of shoplifting from Walmart.

Nicole Marie Capretto, 32, of Lewiston Road, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Capretto is accused of stealing $100 from the cash register of the Pembroke Arrow Mart along with a 12-pack of Bud Light beer.

Alissa Marie Eastridge, 18, of Summit Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Eastridge is accused of shoplifting from Walmart.

Ryan James Sundown, 35, of Meadville Road, Alabama, is charged with criminal mischief, 4th, criminal obstruction of breathing, endangering the welfare of a child, and resisting arrest. Sundown allegedly choked the victim, threw her phone to prevent her from calling for emergency assistance and attempted to leave the scene in his truck, striking another vehicle with his son in the backseat. Sundown was allegedly intoxicated.

January 21, 2016 - 10:22am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, Oakfield, Le Roy.

Josiah C. Yantz, 16, of North Main Street, Oakfield, is charged with third-degree rape. Yantz is accused of non-consensual sexual intercourse with a 14-year-old girl on two separate occasions. Yantz was arraigned and released under supervision of Genesee Justice.

Gregory P. Hamm-Johnson, 25, of Brookville Road, Alexander, is charged with felony driving while impaired by drugs, criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument, aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd, uninspected motor vehicle, broken windshield and no driver headlamp. Hamm-Johnson was stopped at 4:12 p.m. Jan. 15 on Water Street, Village of Attica, by Officers James Prusak Jr. and Brian Marsceill. Hamm-Johnson was jailed on $2,500 bail or $5,000 bond.

Tonya Houseknecht, 33, of East Yates Center Road, Lyndonville, is charged with two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance, 5th, and one count of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 5th. Houseknecht allegedly sold a quantity of lisedexamfetamine dimesylate to an agent of the Local Drug Task Force on two separate occasions. 

Christina M. Sakran, 32, of Kenilworth Terrace, Rochester, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on an aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd, ticket. Sakran was turned over to Batavia PD by the Orleans County Sheriff's Office. She was released on $300 police bail.

Gregory S. Yark, 51, no permanent address, Rochester, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on a criminal possession of stolen property, 5th, charge. Yark was released on his own recognizance. He also faces charges of criminal possession of a hypodermic instrument and criminal use of drug paraphernalia.

Michael P. Murphy, 31, of State Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to pay a fine on an overnight parking ticket. Murphy posted cash bail and was released.

Jeffrey M. Anauo, 28, of Main Street, Alexander, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, three counts of driving drunk with a child in the car, aggravated unlicensed operation and following too closely. Anauo was reportedly involved in a motor-vehicle accident at 8:05 p.m. Sunday on Walnut Street, Batavia. Anauo was jailed without bail. The accident was investigated by officers Christopher Lindsay and Stephen Cronmiller.

Darryl Robinson, 52, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Robinson allegedly punched another person.

Eric M. Smith, 30, of Ross Street, Batavia, is charged with unauthorized use of a vehicle and petit larceny. Smith was arrested on a pair of warrants. Smith was jailed on an unspecified bail.

Jessica Lauren Ford, 24, of Perry Road, Le Roy, is charged with criminal contempt, 1st, a felony. During a traffic stop, Ford was allegedly found with a person in the car she was barred from contact with by court order. She was jailed on $5,000 bail.

January 21, 2016 - 9:32am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia.

The owner of a former vapor shop in Batavia was sentenced in Federal Court yesterday to two years probation and six months home detention for selling counterfeit goods at his store.

Scott Scaccia, 34, of Rochester, owned A Plus Vapes & Deals on Ellicott Street until it was raided by federal authorities in April.

Investigators found that Scaccia was selling counterfeit tobacco vaporizers that were manufactured and distributed from China. Authorities said Scaccia obtained the merchandise from his brother in California and through a Chinese Web site.

Authorities seized 90 counterfeit vaporizers.

Photo: File photo.

January 19, 2016 - 11:30am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Alabama, batavia, Stafford, Le Roy.
mug_crosson_ingrid_2016_0.jpg
Ingrid Crosson

Ingrid E. Crosson, 43, of South Wales, is charged with burglary, 2nd. Crosson is accused of entering a residence in Stafford and stealing a laptop, German air pistol, small pocketknife, three jars of coins, and a pillow case valued at more than $600. Crosson was identified through a note she left at the scene. Following arraignment in Town of Batavia Court, Crosson was released on her own recognizance.

Michele Anne Stamp, 51, of North Street, Batavia, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .18 or more, speed not reasonable and prudent, and moving from lane unsafely. Stamp was involved in a motor-vehicle accident at 7:03 p.m. Sunday on Lewiston Road, Alabama. She was transported to the Genesee County Jail where she submitted to a chemical test. She allegedly tested for a BAC of .21. She was arrested by Deputy Andrew Hale.

Nicholas S. Gillett, 25, of Italy Valley Road, Middlesex, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon, 4th. Gillett was arrested as the result of an investigation in the Town of Bergen. He was allegedly found in possession of a rifle in violation of probation as a result of a felony conviction.

Andrew K. Wright, 25, of Main Street, Batavia, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Wright allegedly pushed a woman and struck her several times with a broom during an argument. He was jailed on $500 bail.

Timothy C. Pabone, 42, of Oak Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd, menacing, 2nd and DWI. Pabone was reportedly involved in an argument at 12:38 p.m. Saturday at 220 W. Main St., Batavia, over where a vehicle was parked. Pabone allegedly brandished a knife and threatened another person. He then allegedly tried to flee the scene in a vehicle, driving through a back yard and over the parkway. He was also charged with unlicensed operator, aggravated unlicensed operation, 2nd, failure to stop at stop sign, failure to keep right, unregistered motor vehicle, driving without insurance, switched plates, and improper registration sticker. Pabone was jailed without bail.

Nicholas Allen Clark, 26, of Hutchins Street, Batavia, is charged with possession of hypodermic instrument. Clark was arrested following a complaint at 2:04 p.m. Saturday of a person injecting himself while driving a vehicle on Liberty Street.

Shawna M. Pursel, 38, of Oak Street, Batavia, is charged with criminally using drug paraphernalia, 2nd. Pursel was allegedly found in possession of a glass pipe commonly used for smoking crack cocaine.

Joseph W. Gottstine, 26, of Beaver Meadow Road, of Java Center, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on a traffic violation.

Raymond L. Morgan, 44, of State Route 31, Lyons, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance. Morgan was arrested on a warrant. He is currently incarcerated in Wayne County on an unrelated charge.

Victor D. Guy, 29, of West Main Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on a traffic violation.

Cheryl M. Lyons, 50, of East Main Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on a petit larceny charge. She was released under supervision of Genesee Justice.

Cheryl A. Kowalik, 55, of Alexander Road, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant stemming from a charge of issuing a bad check.

Samuel Anthony Nigro, 64, of Ellicott Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd. Nigro was allegedly found in possession of a billy club during a home visit by a probation officer. Nigro has a prior felony conviction. He was jailed without bail pending review by Superior Court. Upon review, he was released under supervision of the Probation Department.

Melissa M. Lesage, 36, of Lake Street, Le Roy, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on a traffic citation. She was released on $500 bail.

Terry E. Smith, 38, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with side window tint, no plate lamp, unlawful possession of marijuana, criminal possession of a controlled substance, and aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd. Smith was stopped at 2:04 a.m. Jan. 10 on McKinley Avenue by Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

Samantha L. Tate, 23, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny and conspiracy, 6th. Tate was arrested on a warrant stemming from an alleged shoplifting incident at 415 E. Main St., Batavia.

Joey A. Evans, 25, of Maple Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for allegedly violating released under supervision conditions. Evans allegedly failed to appear for required meetings. He was jailed on $1,000 bail.

Loretta L. Baer, 44, of School Street, Batavia, is charged with resisting arrest and obstructing governmental administration, 2nd. Baer was jailed on $1,000 bail.

Frank J. Yanik, 39, of Pearl Street, Batavia, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, and failure to stop at stop sign. Yanik was stopped at 1:21 a.m. Saturday on Liberty Street by Officer Peter Flanagan.

January 18, 2016 - 11:33am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy, Alabama.

Gayno Star Standsblack, 44, of Wehrle Drive, Williamsville, is charged with felony DWI, aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, 1st, moving from lane unsafely, no seatbelt, and driving without an interlock device. Standsblack was arrested following a report of a suspicious vehicle off the road on Meadville Road, Alabama, at 2:07 a.m. Saturday by Deputy Jason Saile. Standsblack was jailed without bail.

Joseph Paul Capuano, 63, of Clarissa Street, Rochester, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .18 or higher and speeding. Capuano was stopped at 5:38 p.m. Saturday on South Lake Road, Le Roy, by Deputy Andrew Hale.

January 15, 2016 - 11:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, bergen, batavia, Oakfield.

Francine Pauleete Francioli, 34, of Erie Street, Le Roy, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd, unlawful possession of marijuana and inadequate taillights. Francioli was stopped at 4:47 p.m. Thursday on North Bergen Road, Bergen, by Deputy Joseph Corona. Francioli was allegedly found in possession of alprazolam, hydrocodone and marijuana during the traffic stop. 

Benjamin Ross Corke, 28, of Tracey Avenue, Batavia, is charged with criminal use of drug paraphernalia, 2nd. Corke was arrested on a warrant. He was jailed on $1,000 bail.

Rene Norma Brouchu III, 32, of Lewiston Road, Oakfield, is charged with petit larceny. Brouchu allegedly stole several items from Walmart with a value of $174.61.

January 15, 2016 - 10:05am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, business.

Press release:

The Batavia Police Department has received multiple complaints of fraudulent posts on social media (Craigslist, Facebook, and other similar Web sites) claiming to be John Gerace, a realtor of RealityUSA with property “for rent.” The postings are requesting a $700 deposit in exchange for keys to the residence. The only contact information on the postings is for [email protected].

The Batavia Police Department with the assistance of John Gerace, would like to remind the community not to give money upfront for a rental apartment without first walking through the apartment and signing a lease agreement. This is a reoccurring issue. If you feel have been part of this scam please contact the Batavia Police Department at (585) 345-6350 to report the incident.

Previously: Real estate agent turns the tables on craigslist scammer

January 13, 2016 - 4:22pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, John Gerace.

picturesjan132026-6.jpg

It's hard to find good houses for rent in Batavia and John Gerace, a local real estate agent, believes some guy in Nigeria found a nice little scam for himself to take advantage of that fact.

Since Gerace, in a manner of speaking, was a target of the scam, he decided to have a little fun last week at the scammer's expense. 

He posed as a prospective renter and went so far as to con the guy into thinking he sent him $700 via Western Union.

The scammer has been using Gerace's name with his fake rental listings on craigslist, and Gerace made no attempt to hide his identity in his e-mails, phone message or text messages.  

Still, the scammer persisted until he caught onto the ruse, then cut off communication with a Nigerian profanity and ditched his burner phone.

"They wouldn't be doing this if people weren't sending them money," Gerace sad.

Sadly, people probably are sending fake rental agents money, though Gerace has no direct knowledge of that happening, and law enforcement is largely powerless to do anything about it.  

It's one of the dangers of free online classifieds. It's easy for anybody to post anything, though craigslist does warn people not to wire money for housing rentals.

The Nigerian has been using Gerace's listings, all houses that are actually for sale, not for rent, as rental posts on craigslist. The scammer lifts the photos, property description and address out of the for-sale listing and posts them to craigslist. To help further entice the fish, he makes it sound like a great opportunity -- a below-market-value rent of $700, including utilities and pets are allowed.

The act was pretty sophisticated, too. The Nigerian e-mailed prospective renters an application and told a woeful tale of why he and his family needed to rent their beloved house in Batavia.

"I decided to rent out the property due to our transfer to (Black Creek, WI) on a Missionary Work by my church here, so we are renting it out since we need someone to take good care of the property on our absent," the Nigerian writes. "Don't be surprise if you find the home with another site and deference price, I have plan to rent it through Real estate before, but they are not serious simply because they have a lot of house to lease out and they added some money to the rent while there commission is not fair."

When Gerace posed as a potential renter, he told an even sadder tale to the Nigerian.

"I am very excited about the home you have for rent in Batavia located at 18 Oak St.," Gerace sent in a text message. "I have been looking for 3 months for a place for me and my 2 disabled children. My wife was killed in an auto accident when we were driving on the thruway and my 2 children were seriously injured and now need specialized treatments which can only be done here in Batavia by a very close medical center. This home is in a perfect location for us to seek treatments. I am a minister at our local church and I work 2 other jobs to pay all my bills. I am very clean and would take very good care of your home."

Gerace was incredulous that the Nigerian responded and continued with the scam.

So when an agreement was reached, Gerace told the man he sent, as instructed, the $700 via Western Union. He provided a fake transfer ID number. Over the next several hours, the man apparently made several trips to the Western Union office, exchanging messages about the missing money with Gerace along the way, before he realized he himself had been scammed.

The final message from the Nigerian was two words. Gerace translated it. It wasn't nice.

Throughout this ongoing scam, Gerace has been contacted by people who have seen the listings and either didn't realize they were fake or weren't quite sure.  

One home buyer -- Gerace represented the seller, not the buyer -- flew off the handle when his wife found the house they were purchasing for $225,000 in a craigslist listing under Gerace's name.

"He f-bombed me," Gerace said. "What are you doing trying to rent our place when we have an accepted purchase offer!"

Gerace explained it was a scam.

" 'Come on,' " he said, " '$700 a month on a 2,500-square-foot home, including utilities?' I said, "If it sounds too good to be true, it's too good to be true."

Gerace wanted to share his story in the off chance people might read it and get that message.

If it sounds too good to be true, it's too good to be true.

picturesjan132026-5.jpg

January 13, 2016 - 10:22am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Basom, Alabama, batavia, Pavilion.

Terrance D. Bauer, 54, of Church Street, Basom, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and unlawful possession of marijuana. The Local Drug Task Force executed a search warrant at Bauer's residence and allegedly found cocaine and marijuana and various smoking devices and scales. Bauer was issued an appearance ticket.

Elizabeth Michelle Grattan, 26, of Maple Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Grattan is accused of shoplifting from Kohl's Department Store, allegedly stealing merchandise valued at $99. Grattan was jailed on $1,000 bail.

A 16-year-old from Pavilion is charged with criminal mischief, 4th, and harassment, 2nd. The youth was allegedly involved in an altercation at Pavilion Central School, punching another person in the face, resulting in minor injuries and a broken phone.

January 12, 2016 - 10:03am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia.
mug_leonard_johnson_2016.jpg
     Leonard Johnson
mug_duffy_starks_2016.jpg
     Duffy Starks

Leonard A. Johnson, 23, of Hutchins Street, Batavia, is charged with two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance, 3rd, and two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd. Johnson is accused of selling crack cocaine to agents of the Local Drug Task Force on two separate occasions in 2015. Johnson was arrested on a warrant while at the County Courts Facility on an unrelated matter. He was arraigned in City Court and jailed on $25,000 bail.

Duffy Starks, 23, of North Spruce Street, Batavia, is charged with two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance, 3rd, and two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd. Starks was arrested on a Grand Jury indictment warrant based on an investigation by the Local Drug Task Force into the sale of crack cocaine in and around the City of Batavia. Starks was jailed on $50,000 bail.

 

 

 

January 12, 2016 - 9:37am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia.
mug_lee_love_gaines_2016.jpg
     Tylee Gaines

Tylee Demetrius "Love" Gaines, 37, of Waverly Place, Rochester, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell, criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, unlawful possession of marijuana, two counts of aggravated unlicensed operation, obstructed view and unlicensed operator. Gaines was stopped on Ross Street at 4:30 p.m. Thursday by Officer Chad Richards. Gaines was stopped for an alleged obstructed view. He was allegedly found driving on a suspended license. Patrols allegedly detected the odor of marijuana. Gaines was arrested and transported to Batavia PD headquarters where he was allegedly found in possession of marijuana and several small bags of crack cocaine. He was arraigned in City Court and jailed without bail.

Patrick D. Neaverth, 35, of Genesee Street, Buffalo, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Neaverth is accused of slapping a mobile phone out of a woman's hand and grabbing her by the arm and pulling her to the ground while at a residence on Kingsbury Avenue, Batavia, at 4 a.m. Monday. He was jailed on $250 bail.

Essence A. Williams, 18, of Dellinger Avenue, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on a second-degree harassment charge. Williams was jailed on $100 bail.

Rochelle V. Tomlin, 39, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with obligation of a parent or guardian. Tomlin was charged under Batavia Municipal Code after her child was allegedly found loitering on Porter Avenue at 2 a.m., past curfew.

Jolene M. Chenault, 33, of Highland Park, Batavia, turned herself in on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on an aggravated unauthorized operation, 3rd, charge. Chenault posted $200 police bail.

Jillian L. Lafond, 37, of Tracy Avenue, Batavia, is charged with DWI, refusal to take breath test, open container and passing red light. Lafond was stopped in the area of 413 E. Main St., Batavia, at 9:56 p.m. Jan. 5 by Officer Chad Richards.

Joseph M. Furst, 55, of Richmond Avenue, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, possession of a hypodermic instrument and criminal use of drug paraphernalia. Furst was allegedly found in possession of a hypodermic needle and a glassine envelope containing a controlled substance at 9:45 p.m. Thursday at a location on Richmond Avenue by Officer Christopher Lindsay.

Lance M. Mercado, 25, of Holland Avenue, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Mercado is accused of shoplifting at Tops on Dec. 17.

Ward E. Royse, 40, of Walnut Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Royse is accused of shoplifting at Tops on Thursday.

Robert Lee Williams Jr., 25, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Williams was arrested following an alleged altercation at 3:21 p.m. Thursday during a basketball game at the YMCA. Williams allegedly struck another male.

Tracey L. Brewer, 50, of McKinley Avenue, Batavia, is charged with obligation of parent or guardian. Brewer was charged under Batavia Municipal Code after her child was allegedly found loitering on Liberty Street after curfew at 12:12 a.m. Saturday while police were in the area investigating a reported disturbance.

Roger James Farney III, 33, of Clayton Street, Batavia, is charged with driving under combined influence of drugs and alcohol, following too closely, moving from lane unsafely and expired inspection. Farney was stopped at 1:05 p.m. Jan. 5 on Pearl Street, Batavia, by Officer Jason Davis. A witness reported an erratic driver in the area. Farney was jailed on $2,500 bail.

Tyler Doreen Price, 23, of East Main Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear to complete community service. Price was arraigned and released on his own recognizance with instructions by Judge Robert C. Balbick to report to Genesee Justice for community service.

Jeremy L. Lonnen, 24, of Central Avenue, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear. No further details released.

Jennifer L. Allegue, 43, of Ross Street, Batavia, is charged with allowing child to violate city curfew. Allegue's child was allegedly found on Liberty Street after the 11 p.m. city curfew at 12:12 a.m. Saturday while police were investigating a reported disturbance in the area.

Steven Michael Dick, 24, of Ellicott Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on two previous traffic violations. Dick was arraigned in City Court, entered a guilty plea, paid a fine and was released.

Teresa L. Jackson, 25, of Walter Smith Road, Catskill, is charged with aggravated unlicensed operation, 2nd, uninspected motor vehicle, and inadequate tail lamps. Jackson was stopped at 1:41 a.m. Monday on Pearl Street, Batavia, by Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

January 11, 2016 - 3:03pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, batavia, elba.

David Lavalle Andrews , 28, of State Street, Batavia, was arrested at 1 p.m. on Jan. 14 after allegedly failing to appear in Town of Batavia Court nearly two years ago after being released on bail. Andrews allegedly failed to turn himself in within 30 of a court appearance scheduled on Feb. 27, 2014. He is charged with third-degree bail jumping and is now in Genesee County jail. He was to appear in Batavia Town Court today. The case was handled by Deputy Thomas Sanfratello, assisted by Deputy Patrick Reeves.

Edward Jordan White, 20, of Michigan Street, Lockport, is charged with second-degree bail jumping. He was arrested at 9 a.m. on Jan. 12 and put in Genesee County Jail for allegedly failing to appear in County Court on April 7, 2015, for a felony proceeding and then not turning himself in within 30 days of the court date. The case was handled by Deputy Thomas Sanfratello.

Dennis Wayne Narvaez, 34, of Bank Street Road, Elba, is charged with speeding (77 in a 55-mph zone), refusal to take breath test, driving while ability impaired by alcohol (DWAI), and aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd. Narvaez was arrested at 1:09 a.m. on Jan. 9 on Clinton Street Road in Stafford following a traffic stop. The case was handled by Deputy Kevin Forsyth, assisted by Deputy Howard Carlson.

A 16-year-old who lives on Porter Avenue in Batavia was arrested at 4:30 p.m. on Jan. 10 and charged with petit larceny. The arrest was made following a complaint of shoplifting at Kohl's. A 14-year-old accomplice was also allegedly involved. The defendant was released with an appearance ticket. The case was handled by Deputy Matthew Fleming.

January 9, 2016 - 7:09pm
posted by Billie Owens in accident, crime, batavia.

pedaccjan102015.jpg

A pedestrian was reportedly struck by a black pickup truck at the intersection of Bank and Main streets in Downtown Batavia a few minutes ago. The truck then reportedly went into the JC Penney parking lot at the mall before leaving there and turning left onto Washington Avenue. City fire, police and medics are responding.

UPDATE 7:15 p.m.: The pickup driver did not flee the scene, rather drove to a safe location nearby. A Mercy medic happened to get on scene soonest and said the patient was transported to a hospital before a determination was made as to medical condition.

UPDATE Sunday morning: The pedestrian succumbed to his injuries. The victim is identified as Joseph W. Ogozaly, 58, of Batavia. Following the accident, the patient was transported by Mercy EMS to a Mercy Flight landing zone and transported to Strong Memorial Hospital. He was pronounced dead at the hospital. The investigation is ongoing and no charges against the driver have been placed at this time.

January 8, 2016 - 12:26pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia.
mug_armstrongjason2016.jpg
     Jason Armstrong

A Batavia man has been indicted by a Genesee County Grand Jury on a count of criminal sexual act in the first degree.

Jason A. Armstrong Sr., is accused of anally raping a woman at a residence on South Main Street, Batavia, sometime between Nov. 6 and 10.

Armstrong was also indicted on counts of assault in the second degree for allegedly causing physical injury.

He's also indicted on a count of third-degree assault for allegedly causing physical injury to another person on or about Dec. 5 while at the same address as the alleged rape.

On or about Dec. 22, Armstrong allegedly tried to strangle another person, leading to a charge of second-degree strangulation. That incident also led to a charge of assault, 2nd.

January 8, 2016 - 11:11am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, bergen, corfu.
j_mcwethy_mug2016.jpg
   Justine McWethy

Justine D. McWethy, 28, of South Main Street, Batavia, is charged with grand larceny, 2nd. McWethy is accused of stealing $80,000 from a business at 56 Harvester Ave., Batavia. McWethy was arrested on a warrant after being found to be a passenger in a car stopped by a Batavia PD patrol. The alleged theft was reported Nov. 11. McWethy was also arrested by Deputy Joseph Corona on a warrant for alleged failure to appear on a petit larceny charge. On that arrest, she was jailed on $500 bail or $1,000 bond. On the grand larceny charge, she was jailed without bail.

Alfred A. Panepinto, 59, of Ellicott Avenue, Batavia, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and failure to stop for stop sign. Panepinto was stopped at 10:48 p.m. Jan. 2 on Ellicott Avenue by Officer Christopher Lindsay.

Lonnie J. Ford III, 44, of Ellicott Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant for alleged failure to pay a fine stemming from a loitering charge. He was jailed on $125 bail.

Coretta M. Pitts, 47, of Williams Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt, 2nd. Pitts allegedly entered a residence in violation of a complete stay away order. She was jailed on $1,000 bail. 

Vincent Allen Sanfratello, 49, of Gibson Street, Bergen, was arrested on a bench warrant for alleged failure to pay a fine. Sanfratello was jailed without bail.

Joshua David Schultz, 32, of Maple Avenue, Oakfield, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and insufficient tail lamps. Schultz was stopped on Drake Street, Oakfield, at 5:48 p.m. Tuesday by Deputy Joseph Corona.

Jonathan Patrick Little, 25, of Boyce Road, Corfu, is charged with petit larceny. Little is accused of stealing from Kmart on Wednesday.

January 7, 2016 - 5:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, pembroke, corfu, scott doll.
   File Photo: Scott Doll

A single DNA sample obtained at the scene where Joseph Benaquist was found murdered Feb. 19, 2009 does not match the DNA profile of the victim and may not match that of the man convicted by a jury for his murder, Scott F. Doll, according to a recent report produced by the Monroe County Crime Laboratory.

The laboratory, in compliance with a court order issued by Judge Robert C. Noonan in April, examined about two dozen blood samples from the crime scene and determined that the left boot of Benaquist had two possible blood stains. One of the DNA profiles, the lab found, clearly matches the DNA profile of Benaquist, but the other is insufficient to match either Benaquist or Doll.

Appeals attorney Timothy Murphy, in a Dec. 16 letter to Doll at the Elmira Correctional Facility, characterized this finding as promising news. He said the report indicates a third person's DNA was found at the scene.

There is no information available on who the DNA sample might match. Neither Benaquist nor Doll are ruled out as a possible match.

The report reads:

The minor component of the DNA profile is insufficient to support an inclusion or exclusion and is therefore not suitable for comparison. No further conclusions can be reached regarding the minor component mixture.

The lab-tested bloodstains are from the roadway near Benaquist's home at 683 Knapp Road, Pembroke, from the driveway at the residence, from both of Benaquist's boots, from a shirt, a sock and a jacket.

Only the left boot contains a DNA profile that can't be matched to any known person.

The lab report is part of a set of documents provided to The Batavian by Andrew Doll, brother of Scott Doll.

The documents also contain a letter from Monroe County Medical Examiner Caroline Dignan stating that contrary to testimony from Monroe County Deputy Medical Examiner Scott LaPoint in the trial of Doll, no fingernail clippings were collected during the autopsy of Benaquist.

LaPoint testified that such clippings were always collected in a murder investigation and that procedure was followed in this case.

This new evidence, along with additional information, has Andrew Doll feeling even more skeptical about his brother's murder conviction. These include: the unexpected lack of fingernail clippings; his belief that the driveway at 683 Knapp Road was washed down within 24 hours of the murder being discovered; and that a murder weapon has never been recovered.

He's never felt, he said, that his brother has the temperament to become so angry and so out of control that he would bludgeon to death one of his very best friends. There is simply no reason Scott Doll would have killed the 66-year-old Benaquist, Andrew Doll said.

"I just feel there is more to this than what's on the surface," Andrew Doll said. "There seems to be a lot of loose ends that need to be looked at. For the sake of both families, I'm hopeful we can get to some kind of conclusion."

Andrew said his brother asked that the evidence be shared with local media because he wants people to know he's not a murderer.

Scott Doll has maintained his innocence from the beginning and leveraged his life savings along with family money to hire a nationally known attorney from Buffalo, Paul Cambria, to mount his defense at trial. Since his conviction in June 2010, Doll has pursued a couple of appeals. His murder conviction was upheld by the NYS Supreme Court in July 2012.

Last year, Murphy filed a new appeal seeking a reexamination of the DNA evidence used in the case.

Two days ago, Murphy scheduled an interview about the new development in the case for this morning. But then Murphy said he decided he could not comment on the case at this time.

We don't know, therefore, what will happen next with the case, what strategy Murphy will pursue to press forward with an appeal, or if that's even in the cards.

So far we've been unable to reach ADA Will Zickl, who is handling the Doll appeal for the District Attorney's Office.

Doll was sentenced to 15-years-to-life in state prison, the minimum sentence available to Judge Robert C. Noonan on Doll's murder conviction. The way Andrew Doll sees it, he said, the minimum available sentence suggests strongly that even Noonan, who sat through the entire trial and heard all of the evidence, doesn't believe Scott Doll committed the murder.

Noonan stated during the sentencing that he thought Doll deserved a shot at parole before he was too old or would likely die in prison.

Scott Doll became a suspect when he was found by Deputy James Diehl wandering on Lake Street in Pembroke in blood-soaked overalls. During the course of the early part of the investigation, Doll made statements about the situation, including an assertion that the blood was from a deer he had butchered. The blood turned out to be that of the murder victim. For hours, Doll was in police custody but would not discuss where the blood came from or disclose the location of a person who might need medical attention. While in custody, he made statements that were later used against him at trial.

Andrew Doll acknowledged none of that made his brother look good.

"My brother did things that didn’t seem right and weren't right, and to this day, he doesn’t know what he did and why," Andrew Doll said.

January 6, 2016 - 6:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy, brandon c. dodd.

   Brandon Dodd
   2010 photo

When Brandon C. Dodd, who thought he might get a term of probation on a burglary conviction, was sentenced to five years in prison by Judge Robert C. Noonan in September, 2010, Dodd mumbled something about pedophiles as he was leaving the courtroom.

Noonan called him back to the defense table and asked him to repeat his statement.

"I hope you continue to let all the pedophiles walk the street and save all of the probation for those people," Dodd said.

Noonan informed Dodd that his on-the-record statement would be something a parole board would likely consider someday in reviewing his status for release from prison.

Dodd was released on parole in August.

Today, he's also back in jail, accused of attacking a woman in an apartment on Lake Street in Le Roy.

Three days ago, police in Le Roy said a 29-year-old parolee had been stabbed and found him wounded on Lake Street.

They've now identified Dodd as the stabbing victim.

It's alleged that Dodd was in an apartment on Lake Street with an acquaintance when an argument ensued. Dodd allegedly grabbed both a metal pot and a vase and started swinging them at the woman. He then allegedly threw her on a bed and held her there. Somehow, the woman grabbed a knife and stabbed him.

The disturbance was heard by a neighbor, who called 9-1-1.

Upon arrival, police reportedly found Dodd hiding under a bed. He was taken into custody on a violation of probation charge and transported to a hospital for treatment of his stab wound and then turned over to the NYS Department of Parole.

Dodd allegedly removed an ankle bracelet he was required to wear and has been charged with criminal mischief, 4th, for damaging that state property. He was charged with petit larceny for allegedly disposing of the bracelet.

He's also charged with criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd, for using the pot and vase as weapons while being previously convicted of a crime, criminal mischief, 4th, for allegedly damaging the woman's mobile phone and unlawful imprisonment, 2nd.

He is being held in the Genesee County Jail without bail on the violation of probation charge. 

January 6, 2016 - 5:21pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy, welfare fraud, DSS.

A 25-year-old Le Roy resident who admitted to cheating the system out of $10,437 in public assistance and food stamps was sentenced in County Court today to five years probation. 

Jessica Horton was also ordered to pay back the money obtained under false pretenses.

Horton was accused in August of filing documents with the Department of Social Services claiming that her two children were living with her when they were not.

She entered a guilty plea Oct. 29 to one count of offering a false instrument for filing in satisfaction of the counts she was originally arrested on, which included seven counts of offering a false Instrument for filing, 1st, and one count of grand larceny, 3rd.

As a term of the plea deal, Horton is permanently disqualified from receiving financial aid through the Temporary Assistance or SNAP programs.

To report suspected welfare fraud, call DSS's Fraud Investigation Unit at (585) 344-2580, ext. 6417 or 6416. All calls are confidential.

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