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April 18, 2016 - 4:40pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, Le Roy, batavia, elba, corfu, Oakfield.

Kerry L. Norton, 33, of Porter Avenue, Batavia, is charged with operating a motor vehicle with a BAC of .08 or greater, driving while intoxicated, DWI -- Leandra's Law, and endangering the welfare of a minor. At 2:31 a.m. on April 16, Norton was arrested after being stopped for multiple traffic violations. Norton performed field sobriety tests, which he allegedly failed. Officers discovered that two of his passengers were juveniles under age 16. Officers later discovered that Norton allegedly allowed the children to smoke marijuana in the vehicle while he was driving. He was jailed without bail and set to return to court today. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Flanagan, assisted by Officer Eric Foels.

Deniz M. Pirincci, 59, Garden Drive, Batavia, is charged with owning an unlicensed dog and owning a dog running at large. At 9:32 p.m. on March 27, Pirincci's dog was running at large and allegedly attacked another dog that was being walked by its owner on Garden Drive. Following at investigation, he was issued at appearance ticket for April 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Kevin DeFelice.

Joseph A. Monte, 52, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with third-degree robbery, second-degree harassment, and criminal obstruction of breathing. He was arrested at 2:32 a.m. on April 17 after an investigation into a domestic incident that occurred a short time earlier on Walnut Street. He was jailed and set to be in court today. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Eric Foels.

Carlos Samol, 51, of Libersty Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree menacing. He was arrested after an incident at 8:07 p.m. on April 17 on Ellicott Street in which Samol allegedly menaced another person with what appeared to be a pistol. He was jailed on $5,000 bail and is to appear in City Court today. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Christopher Lindsay. In addition, he was charged with second-degree criminal contempt for allegedly riding in a car with another person in violation of a complete stay-away order of protection. On the latter charge, the case was handled by Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Mitchell Cowen.

Frank J. Finley Jr., 33, of Dellinger Avenue, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment and endangering the welfare of a child. Finley was arrested following an investigation into a domestic incident in the city at 11:40 p.m. on April 9. He was due in court on April 11. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Felicia DeGroot, assisted by Officer Peter Flanagan.

Riley J. Cole, 20, of Garibaldi Avenue, Oakfield, is charged with second-degree harassment. The charge stems from an incident on Walnut Street at 3:50 p.m. on April 8 wherein Cole allegedly struck an ARC staff member in the face. Cole is to appear in City Court Tuesday. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Officer Chad Richards.

Zachary Vernon Seeley, 19, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment and fourth-degree criminal mischief. He was arrested following an altercation at 3:11 p.m. on April 13 at 555 E. Main St. with another resident at that location. Seeley allegedly became upset with the other resident and punched a hole in a wall there, prior to allegedly shoving the other resident. He was jailed in lieu of $500 bail and was due in court on April 14. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Chad Richards, assisted by Officer Stephen Cronmiller.

Taheed M. Moffett, 31, of Turner Street, Rochester, is charged with criminal mischief -- $250 in damages, resisting arrest and second-degree obstruction of governmental administration. Moffett was arrested at 8:56 p.m. on April 19 on Pearl Street. The defendant was to appear in April 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk, assisted by Officer Christopher Lindsay.

Scott D. Higgins, 35, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with aggravated driving while intoxicated, with a BAC of .18 percent or more, DWI -- common law, third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation, failure to use headlights, and operation of a motor vehicle by an unlicensed driver. At 2:22 a.m. on April 16, officers conducted a traffic stop on a vehicle without headlights on West Main Street at Burger King. Higgins was allegedly found to be operating the vehicle while intoxicated and he was subsequently arrested for DWI and issued tickets. He is scheduled to be in City Court on April 27. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk. Higgins was subsequently arrested at 1 p.m. on April 19 for failure to appear on a charge stemming from an incident on Aug. 12, 2014, on West Main Street.  He was jailed, then released after posting $200 bail. He is to appear in City Court on this matter Tuesday. The case was handled by Officer Wojtaszczyk, assisted by Officer Perkins.

Christopher Michael Barone, 33, of Lawrence Avenue, Corfu, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and second-degree aggravated unlicensed operator. He was arrested at 7:59 p.m. on April 8 after a traffic stop on Main Street in Batavia. He was found to have a suspended driver's license (14 suspensions on four dates) and also had an active warrant out of the Town of Batavia for third-degree aggravated unlicensed operator. He was also allegedly found to possess cocaine. He was jailed on $1,000 bail and was to be in City Counrt on April 11. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Darryle Streeter.

Terry L. Travis Jr., 33, of Pringle Avenue, Batavia, is charged with driving while intoxicated, first offense, aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, 3rd, refusal to take a breath test and illegal signal. He was arrested at 1:38 p.m. on March 25 and released with an appearance ticket for City Court on April 27. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk, assisted by Officer Eric Foels.

Robin D. Dixon, 28, of Barbie Court, Rochester, is charged with driving while intoxicated, driving while intoxicated -- common law, and driving the wrong direction on a one-way street. Dixon was arrested at 2:08 a.m. on April 9 after she was observed allegedly driving the wrong way on a portion of School Street, downtown. After a traffic stop, she was arrested for allegedly driving in an intoxicated condition. She is to be in court on April 20. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

Brian V. Bisig, 29, of Transit Road, Elba, is charged with having insufficient tail lamps and second-degree aggravated unlicensed operation. At 9:47 p.m. on April 14, Bisig was stopped for having a defective tail lamp in the area of West Main and River streets. He was arrested and posted $200 bail and is to be in City Court on April 27. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Chad Richards, assisted by Officer Christopher Camp.

Johnney Lee Shannon, 57, of Creek Road, Batavia, is charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and unattended motor vehicle. Shannon was arrested at 1:06 p.m. April 11 on West Main Street Road, Batavia, after allegedly leaving his vehicle running unattended in the parking lot of a local business. The defendant was issued an appearance ticket for City Court on May 3. Subsequently, Shannon was arrested on a warrant out of Wyoming County. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Davis, assisted by Officer Marc Lawrence.

Nathan S. Love, 23, of Montclair Avenue, Batavia, is charged with failure to appear. He was arrested on a City of Batavia warrant that was issued after he failed to appear on a charge stemming from an incident on Feb. 27 on West Main Street, Batavia. He was jailed on $500 bail and was to be in City Court this afternoon. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Felicia DeGroot.

Gregory F. Frieday, 31, of Osterhout Avenue, Batavia, is charged with criminal trespass and criminal mischief -- intent to damage property. He was arrested at 11:20 p.m. on April 9 and was issued an appearance ticket for court on May 3. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk, assisted by Officer Eric Foels.

Timothy J. Wood Sr., 27, of Oak Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. He was arrested at 12:30 p.m. on April 3 following an investigation stemming from his allegedly threatening individuals. He was jailed on $1,000 bail and was to be in court on April 7. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Cronmiller.

Kyle Ratulowski, 20, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, was arrested on two counts of petit larceny after attempting to pawn items he allegedly stole from unsecured vehicles overnight while in the City of Batavia. He was issued an appearance ticket and is to be in City Court on Tuesday. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Davis. Deputy Young from the Genesee County Sheriff's Office assisted in the investigation. The Sheriff's Office also had charges on Ratulowski for allegedly stealing items from unsecured vehicles in the Town of Batavia. He was jailed on those charges.

Kiha S. McNear, 18, of 1/2 Walnut St., Batavia, was arrested at 9:45 a.m. on April 11 after police responded to a report of a physical altercation in the parking lot of Tim Horton's. While police were interviewing multiple subjects, McNear became upset that poluce had stopped him and allegedly started using absive language and shouting obscenities and racial epithets toward police. He was subsequently arrested and issued an appearance ticket for city court at a later date. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Marc Lawrence, assisted by Sgt. Daniel Coffey. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Officer Kevin DeFelice.

Kasey J. Wagner, 34, of Fletcher Chapel Road, Shelby, is charged with failure to appear. Wagner was arrested on a warrant issued her failure to appear in court on a charge of third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation. Wagner was jailed on $250 bail and was due in court April 11.

Christina A. Cotter, 23, of Ellicott Street, Batavia, charged with second-degree criminal contempt. Cotter was arrested on April 4 after violating a complete stay-away order of protection issued by City Court by allegedly sending several text messages to the protected party. Cotter was to be in court April 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jamie Givens.

Ralph A. Golding, 51, of Broadway, Alden, was arrested April 11 on a bench warrant out of City Court. The warrant was issued after Golding allegedly failed to pay a fine in relation to a conviction for petit larceny. The defendant was due in court April 13. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay.

Kathryn F. Long, 21, of Harris Road, Le Roy was arrested on April 14th by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with petit larceny, a Class A misdemeanor. Long was arrested following a complaint of an alleged larceny in progress from Tops Market located in the Village. Long allegedly took $5.89 worth of merchandise from Tops. She was issued an appearance ticket and is to appear in Le Roy Town Court on May 19.

Kenneth A. McJury, 52, of 1/2 Highland Park, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. McJury was arrested following an investigated into a larceny at 5:57 p.m. April 6 at the Kwik Fill on Jackson Street. He was issued an appearance ticket for City Court on April 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Cronmiller, assisted by Arick Perkins.

Tyler D. Price, 23, of East Main Street, Batavia, was arrested at 1 p.m. on April 12 on a bench warrant. Price was released on an appearance ticket and was to be in City Court on April 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk, assisted by Officer Peter Flanagan.
April 15, 2016 - 2:02pm
posted by Billie Owens in Grand Jury, crime, news, Stafford, batavia.

Joseph M. Dispenza is indicted for the crime of driving while intoxicated as a Class E felony. It is alleged that on Oct. 17 in the Town of Batavia that Dispenza drove a 2006 Pontiac on Route 63 while in an intoxicated condition. In count two, he is accused of the crime of aggravated driving while intoxicated, per se, as a Class E felony. It is alleged that he had a BAC of .18 percent at the time. In count three, he is accused of aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree, a Class E felony, for driving while knowing, or having reason to know, that his license was suspended, revoked or otherwise withdrawn by authorities, and doing so while under the influence of alcohol or a drug.

Cordell E. Libbett is indicted for the crime of aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree, a Class E felony. It is alleged that on Oct. 4 in the Town of Stafford that Libbett drove a 2015 Dodge with Mississippi plates on Route 33 in the Town of Stafford while knowing, or having reason to know, that his license to operate a motor vehicle in this state was suspended, revoked or otherwise withdrawn by authorities. It is further alleged that he had in effect 10 or more suspensions, imposed on at least 10 separate dates for failure to answer or pay a fine. These are cited as having occurred in the following places on these dates: Dec. 25, 2008, Town of Wayland, Steuben County; Oct. 11, 2013, Town of Irondequoit, Monroe County; and in the City of Rochester, Monroe County, on Aug. 31 and Nov. 22, 2006; and Jan. 29. and March 19, 2007; Jan. 22, March 7, March 28, May 6, Sept. 27, Oct. 10, Oct. 18, and Nov. 20, 2008; April 24, June 26, Dec. 29, 2012; March 5, Oct. 1 and Dec. 3, 2013; and March 19, 2014.

April 15, 2016 - 1:16pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, batavia, byron, Le Roy, pembroke.

James R. Kosiorek (pictured left), 23, who has no permanent address and is currently residing in the Genesee County Jail, was arrested by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with a second residential burglary where guns were allegedly involved. Kosiorek was initially charged for burglarizing a residence March 17 on Lake Street in LeRoy and attempting to steal guns from inside. During that alleged burglary, the homeowner interrupted the burglary finding Kosiorek inside at which time Kosiorek allegedly fled the scene, leaving the guns. While conducting that investigation, information was received alleging Kosiorek committed a different but similar burglary on Genesee Street in Le Roy. A subsequent investigation into the Genesee Street burglary alleged that on March 13 Kosiorek forced entry to an acquaintances apartment at which time Kosiorek removed two shotguns from the apartment. It is alleged that Kosiorek was again interrupted by the tenant and fled the scene. The shotguns were recovered by the tenant in the back yard. Kosiorek was charged Thursday with one count of second-degree burglary, a Class C felony, two counts of fourth-degree grand larceny, a Class E felony, and one count of third-degree criminal mischief, also a Class E felony. Kosiorek was arraigned before the Hon. Michael Welsh of the Le Roy Town Court and released on his own recognizance as he was already being held on bail for the Lake Street burglary.

Amelia Rose Witkowski, 30, of Angling Road, Pembroke, is charged with second-degree burglary, making a punishable false written statement and petit larceny. She was arrested for allegedly entering a resident on Main Road in Pembroke at 6:30 p.m. on Jan. 29 and stealing property from within. She also allegedly provided a written deposition to a Sheriff's deputy which contained false information. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Joseph Graff, assisted by Deputy Christopher Erion.

Kimberly M. Zeiner, 48, of Caroline Street, Albion, was charged with aggravated unlicensed operation, 2nd, and driving without headlights following a traffic stop at 3 p.m. April 6 on West Main Street, Batavia. Zeiner was subsequently arrested on April 14 on an outstanding bench warrant on those charges issued out of City of Batavia Court. The defendant was jailed in lieu of $250 bail. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Richard Schildwaster.

Nicholas Adam Dubois, 18, of Shady Lane, Batavia, is charged with two counts of petit larceny. Dubois was arrested following an investigation of theft of stone from two locations in the Town of Byron. He was released with appearance tickets. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Matthew Fleming, assisted by Deputy Michael Lute.

A 17-year-old is charged with two counts of petit larceny. The youth was arrested following an investigation of theft of stone from two locations in the Town of Byron. The subject was released with appearance tickets. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Matthew Fleming, assisted by Deputy Michael Lute.

April 15, 2016 - 1:07pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Kyle Johnson, crime, Le Roy.
120mug_kylejohnson.jpg
    Kyle Johnson

The man accused of murdering a neighbor on Selden Road, Le Roy, the morning of Dec. 1, received a psychological exam earlier this week, according to his attorney, but the results of that exam have not yet been made available to the defense.

The report will help Public Defender Jerry Ader determine how he will proceed with the case, he told President Judge Michael F. Pietruszka.

Ader may ask for a hearing to determine if Kyle G. Johnson suffers from a mental defect or impairment.

Johnson is accused of killing Norman D. "Don" Ball, of setting his own house on fire, and of attempting to kill a police officer and firefighter.

The 53-year-old defendant was arrested near his property on Selden Road after a lengthy standoff with police, including emergency response teams, while his house burned to the ground.

It will take at least two weeks for the written report to become available, at which time, Ader will provide a copy to District Attorney Lawrence Friedman. 

At some point after the report is available, there will be a hearing on several issues related to the case. Whether that includes a hearing on Johnson's mental state will be determined by Ader, but Friedman said he expects Ader will seek a hearing on several evidentiary issues, including a photo lineup used with a witness, oral statements made in connection with the case, a video interview, and numerous statements made to corrections officers in the Genesee County Jail.

Typically, pre-trial hearings last about an hour, but Friedman said he expects this hearing will last substantially longer, but less than a full day.

For previous coverage on Kyle Johnson, click here.

April 14, 2016 - 2:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy.
mug_charles_scintadec2015.jpg mug_wetsell_james.jpg
     Charles Scinta      James Wetall

Judge Michael F. Pietruszka isn't convinced that 74-year-old Charles G. Scinta is addicted to painkillers and wants to see some evidence that he is before considering a possible probationary sentence that would include drug rehab on Scinta's drug-dealing charges.

"The report says he's been using opiates since he was 69, but it doesn't say they're illicit," Pietruszka said. "They could have been prescribed," adding later, "my point is, I don't know that this is a substance-abuse issue. This could easily be interrupted as being medical sanctioned."

Scinta's attorney, Lisa Kroemer, said she understood the judge's concern and asked for a two-week adjournment to get clarification from the drug-treatment program that produced the report on exactly what their findings were.

"I think that's in everyone's best interest," Pietruszka said.

Scinta, who was allowed to sit throughout the court proceedings because of a medical condition, was arrested in December with 43-year-old James J. Wetall, also of Le Roy. The two men were arrested as the result of an investigation into the sale of oxycodone and diazepam.

Scinta is accused of selling oxycodone to undercover agents on two separate occasions. He is charged with two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance, 5th, and criminal possession of a controlled substance, 5th.

A potential plea deal could keep Scinta out of prison, but first, Pietruszka wants to understand Scinta's history with painkillers.

Earlier, Wetall was given a shot at rehabilitation in exchange for pleading guilty to his drug sale charges. If Wetall successfully completes a rehab program, he will be allowed to withdraw his guilty plea to the felony charges and plead guilty to misdemeanors, which will carry a maximum penalty of one year in jail or three years probation.

If Wetall doesn't make it through rehab successfully, he's facing a sentence of up to 18 years in prison.

April 14, 2016 - 1:45pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia.
j_mcwethy_mug2016.jpg
     Justine McWethy

A 28-year-old Batavia woman with multiple arrests on her record was hoping for another chance at drug rehabilitation when she appeared in County Court this morning on a grand larceny charge. Instead, Presiding Judge Michael F. Pietruszka thought a minimum of one year in prison would be a more appropriate sentence.

Justine D. McWethy had previously admitted to stealing more than $90,000 $9,000 from Joseph L. Mancuso, Inc., 56 Harvester Ave. while employed there in 2014.

The thefts, said her attorney Lisa Kroemer, were the result of her addictions and suggested to Piertruszka that a prison term wouldn't help her become a productive member of society.

"That's not going to clean up her addiction," Kroemer said. "In order for her to be able to use her talents, which as pointed out in the probation report -- she has a modicum of education and she is an intelligent girl, if she could get past the addiction, she would be able to lead a productive and law-abiding life."

District Attorney Lawerence Friedman argued that based on McWethy's history and the nature of the crime, in which she researched, planned and carried out a complex scheme to defraud her employer, made her less than a suitable candidate for probation and a rehab program.

He asked the maximum available sentence under the plea deal, which was one and a third to four years in state prison, be imposed.

With several members of her family in the gallery, McWethy tearfully apologized for her crime and said she's written several letters of apology, feeling guilty for what she did every day since her thefts were discovered. And while she said she understood why Friedman thought she should be punished, she would really like a chance to conquer her addiction.

"I feel like this is not the person I was meant to be," McWethy said.

Pietruszka said he was taking into account two violations of probation in the past 13 months before imposing a one- to three-year prison term, where, he noted, she can apply for drug treatment available to some state prisoners.

McWethy was also ordered to pay back the full amount in restitution, starting with Mancuso and then paying back the several banks that also lost money as part of the scheme.

CORRECTION: We originally published that the amount of restitution exceeded $90,000. This was a mistake. I misheard the amount in court. The correct amount is $9,136. I apologize for the mistake.

April 14, 2016 - 1:04pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, Suzanne Corona, news, crime.

Suzanne Corona admitted to a violation of her probation in Genesee County Court on Wednesday afternoon and therefore Acting Judge Michael F. Pietruszka allowed her to continue serving probation without any additional penalty.

"I put Amaretto in my coffee," she told the judge, explaining why a urine sample taken from her on March 21 tested positive for alcohol, which she is forbidden from imbibing under the terms of her probation.

The terms were set forth last year after she admitted selling $60 worth of suboxone, a controlled substance, to an undercover agent of the Local Drug Enforcement Task Force.

By pleading guilty on Aug. 3, she avoided serving up to one and a half years in prison and one year of post-release supervision and got probation instead, without objection from the DA's Office.

Although she got into trouble with the law several times during the period of 2010 and 2014, she had never faced a felony charge until then. As a first-time felony offender, the judge in the case, Robert C. Noonan, now retired, had leeway to give her jail time instead or probation.

Corona made headlines worldwide when she was arrested on an adultery charge in 2010 after being observed in an apparent sexual act with a man not her husband on a picnic table in Farrell Park. Then came accusations of shoplifting from a local restaurant, which led to a disturbance there and Corona being wheeled away on a gurney into a waiting ambulance, and various other shoplifting charges, including an arrest at Target on a day when a Sheriff's deputy was there doing a K-9 demonstration.

The Ousterhout Avenue resident avoided getting into trouble for a long time and then came the arrest for selling suboxone.

After testing positive for alcohol last month, she initially denied violating the conditions of her probation, then on the advice of her attorney, Brian Degnan, she reversed course. Even in court yesterday, after having conferred with her attorney, she at first refused to admit guilt.

Pietruszka asked if she was on medication and she said is prescribed medication for "mental health, pain, anxiety and thyroid." When asked, she said she has never been in treatment for drug addiction but she has, and continues, treatment for alcoholism.

Asked if she was satisfied with her attorney, she said yes, and acknowleged that her admission of guilt was being made without coercion or under any threat, and with the understanding that admitting the violation was the same as being convicted after a hearing in court.

The judge said in reviewing her file, he saw nothing to indicate an extra penalty would be imposed if she failed supervision. He said the interim supervision of probation imposed last summer would continue.

Corona, in her mid-40s, was easily the best-dressed person in the gallery of the courtroom Wednesday, admittedly not a high bar. She wore a short, navy blue, knit panel skirt and matching jacket, with buff-colored pumps, nude hose, a cloth shoulder bag with a long strap that had wide, bold navy and white stripes. Her chunky silver wristwatch was encrusted with crystals. French manicured nails, one fingertip painted navy; silver thumb ring and thin silver bangle earrings. Her perfume? "Juicy Couture."

After she left the courtroom by herself, she seemed relieved, the nervousness she conceded earlier abated. Asked how she ended up where she is, she sadly and briefly articulated the "rough road" of her upbringing and said she is working hard on her issues.

And Degnan couldn't help but note that for someone like his client to have only slipped up once in nearly a year is in itself an accomplishment.

"I pay $105 out of my own pocket for counseling, (I go) three times a week," she said proudly. "I don't get public assistance."

April 13, 2016 - 5:47pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, news, crime.

A former crack cocaine dealer who lived on Summit Street in the City of Batavia and is now serving eight years in prison appeared in Genesee County Court today to have a court date set on new drug charges.

Philip R. Ayala, about 30, was indicted by a Grand Jury in January for the crime of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree, a Class B felony. It is alleged that on July 9 in the City of Batavia that Ayala knowingly and unlawfully possessed a narcotic drug -- crack cocaine -- with intent to sell it. In count two, the defendant is accused of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the fourth degree, a Class C felony, for allegedly knowingly and unlawfully possessing one or more preparations, compounds, mixtures or substances containing a narcotic drug and these preparations, compounds, mixtures or substances are of an aggregate weight of one-eighth ounce or more.

As a prisoner in the state Department of Corrections, he was in shackles and wore a forest green jumpsuit, shadowed by an armed prison guard wearing a bulletproof vest.

Ayala has until 9:30 a.m. on June 8 to accept a plea offer from the DA's Office on a single Class B felony charge of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree. Otherwise, the case will go to trial on July 25.

According to assistant DA William Zickl, Ayala faces a maximum of up to 12 more years in prison.

"I would offer a plea to expose the defendant to additional incarceration," Zickl said after the court proceedings, adding that it is up to the judge to decide the length of the sentence under the provisions of the law and whether it would be concurrent or consecutive to the existing prison term.

Ayala has a criminal history.

After a raid by law enforcement in December 2014, Ayala pled guilty six months later to criminal possession of a controlled substance, 4th, a Class C felony. He was bailed out of jail and was scheduled to be sentenced last Aug. 4  to no more than five years in prison -- IF he didn't break the law prior to his sentencing.

But on July 9, while living on Vine Street in Batavia, he was arrested on a sealed warrant out of Orleans County. When he was arrested on that warrant, he allegedly had 62 bags of crack cocaine in his possession. Thus, January's Grand Jury indictment as noted above.

His attorney, then as now, is Jamie Welch, who maintained his client hadn't violated the plea offer because Ayala wasn't arrested specifically on the charges for allegedly possessing 62 bags of crack before the Aug. 4 sentencing date (technically, his arrest was due to charges contained in the sealed warrant), so the max prison time he should get is five years. Judge Robert C. Noonan, now retired, disagreed and determined Ayala indeed violated the plea offer, so the maximum eight years was imposed last summer.

At that time, Zickl told Noonan: "One thing that is clear is the defendant is deeply committed to drug dealing and undertakes it as a business venture. Ayala's criminal record and recent charges suggest he will never stop dealing drugs."

This afternoon, a dozen people, including an infant niece Ayala had never seen before, were in the gallery in support of Ayala.

When he stood to leave the courtroom with his guard, they shouted "We love you!" and "Keep your head up!"

April 13, 2016 - 4:18pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, batavia, news.

A Walnut Street, Batavia, man who pled guilty to criminal possession of controlled substance, 4th, and criminal sale of a controlled substance, 4th, was sentenced today to five years in state prison.

Cody A. Bush, about 29, is a second felony offender. He admits that he sold a quantity of suboxone, a controlled substance, in and around the City of Batavia and the Town of Elba to an agent of the Local Drug Enforcement Task Force. He was already in jail on related charges with he was arrested in November on the Class C felonies.

His attorney, Thomas Burns, asked Acting Genesee County Court Judge Pietruszka to sentence him to two to two-and-a-half years in prison, with credit for time served, and the ability to avail himself to substance abuse treatment and other beneficial programs while incarcerated.

"He does suffer from a drug problem and an addiction," Burns said. "There is awareness that it is his responsbility...He admits he had no right to convey and sell the drug to another person."

Burns said his client struggles with "an inability to take himself away from controlled substances," and yet he is also responsible for parenting four children.

"I let drug addiction ruin most of my adult life," Bush told the judge when given a chance to speak before being sentenced. "For that I am ashamed and sorry."

In addition to a determinate prison sentence of five years and three years post-release supervision, Pietruszka sentenced him to 12 months in county jail, to run concurrently with the prison sentence, for criminal possession of a weapon, 4th.

April 13, 2016 - 12:26pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news.
      Laura Fletcher

A 42-year-old Batavia woman told Presiding County Court Judge Michael F. Pietruska that she's willing to risk the possibility of a 24-year prison term in exchange for one more shot at drug rehab.

Laura Fletcher, a mother of four with three still of school age, will need to stay on the straight and narrow for two years to avoid prison if she pleads guilty April 18 to a four-count grand jury indictment for allegedly dealing drugs.

She has two prior drug-dealing convictions.

"Looking at her history, that is quite a risk," Pietruska said.

Those two prior convictions are the reason, said ADA Will Zickl, that Fletcher shouldn't get another shot at drug treatment.

"There is a demonstratable objective history in this case that I think makes it a very poor argument to be made that she should be given a chance in this program," Zickl said.

In the indictment issued in November, Fletcher is accused of selling cocaine in May and June to agents of the Local Drug Task Force. She is charged with four Class B felonies, two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance, 3rd, and two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd.

She's been approved for the program by a panel in Erie County, along with a recommendation from a local counselor. 

Her attorney Lisa Kroemer argued that Fletcher is willing to assume a substantial risk, given her track record, that she's fully aware of the consequences of failure, and that she desperately wants to succeed in the program.

Fletcher could potential get a lighter prison term in a plea deal, instead of pleading guilty to all four counts of the indictment.

She tearfully told Pietruska she understood the risk, but was willing to take the chance for a new chance at a clean life.

Kroemer said Fletcher has had periods between arrests where she was able to maintain sobriety before succumbing to her addiction again.

The prior drug sales convictions were "simply to support her own addiction," Kroemer said. "It was not part of any profit-making scheme."

April 12, 2016 - 4:13pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, byron, Oakfield, batavia, news.

Kevin C. Greene, 61, of Bloomingdale Road, Akron, is a convicted sex offender who is charged with failure to notify an address change within 10 days. He was arrested March 11 at noon for allegedly moving out of his residence in February 2015 and not filing an address change within 10 days. He was issued an appearance ticket and is to appear in Batavia City Court on April 26. The case was investigated by Batavia Police Det. Eric Hill.

Carmelina Munoz Chavez, 48, of Sunrise Parkway, Oakfield, is charged with driving while intoxicated. She was arrested at 12:40 a.m. on April 10 following a complaint of a motor-vehicle accident in the Town of Byron. The defendant's vehicle was located and upon investigation, the defendant was arrested for allegedly driving while intoxicated. She was issued an appearance ticket and is to appear in Oakfield Town Court on May 9. The case was investigated by Sheriff's Deputy Ryan DeLong.

April 12, 2016 - 3:56pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, batavia, news.

The person who bailed Joseph M. Platten out of Genesee County Jail wants his or her money back -- sooner rather than later. And Genesee County Acting Court Judge Michael F. Pietruszka agreed this morning to release the funds.

Platten, 32, who lives on Warren Street in Batavia, pled guilty on April 4 to criminal possession of a controlled substance in the fifth degree.

He was one of six people arrested in January after an investigation into illicit drug sales by the Drug Enforcement Task Force. At that time, he was jailed without bail.

Originally, he was charged with two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance, 5th, and criminal possession of a controlled substance, 5th. Platten allegedly sold a quantity of a controlled substance to an agent of the Drug Task Force while in the City of Batavia.

After accepting a plea deal on the single charge, bail was set at $1,000 and someone bailed him out.

While out on bail and awaiting sentencing, which had been set for May 31, Platten was arrested in the City of Batavia for petit larceny and he was sentenced to six months in jail.

Now he's serving that time and the person who posted bail in the drug case is requesting that the bail money be returned ASAP, said Platten's public defense attorney Lisa Kroemer. 

She also asked Judge Pietruszka to speed up sentencing on the drug charge.

"I hate to have him sitting there doing dead time on this file," she said.

"I think that can be done," replied the judge.

Platten, shackled and wearing an orange inmate jumpsuit, appeared in court with a razor-thin beard and shaved head, a tattoo visible on his neck. He is to return to court at 9:30 a.m. on May 6 for sentencing on criminal possession of a controlled substance in the fifth degree.

April 12, 2016 - 3:09pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, crime, news.

A Batavia man who pled guilty to second-degree strangulation was sentenced to one to three years in state prison today by Acting Genesee County Court Judge Michael F. Pietruszka.

Joshua M. Gaudioso was arrested following a domestic incident Dec. 6 on Galloway Road wherein he strangled a female and threatened to kill her along with several family members.

"I can clearly see the gravity of my client's previous contacts in the criminal justice system," said his public defense attorney, Lisa Kroemer, who went on to tout the progress "Josh" seemed to be making in his treatment program and how well his counselor thinks he's doing.

"Josh got a lot out of it," Kroemer said.

She recommended a plan of intensive outpatient treatment until a bed in an in-patient facility becomes available. She asked the judge to consider allowing Gaudioso to be screened for acceptance into Drug Treatment Court with clinical supervision and a probationary sentence. She asked that today's sentencing be postponed until a screening and determination could be accomplished.

But Pietruszka was not swayed to grant her requests based on her client's previous behavior. The judge noted that Gaudioso has been on probation three times in the last 10 years and probation was revoked in each case. He was also on parole once and that, too, was revoked.

The judge issued four no-contact orders of protection, with the exception of minimal contact in one case for the purposes of facilitating visitation with his children. The victim's stay-away order will be in effect until April 12, 2027; the other three until April 12, 2024.

Gaudioso, who is about 5'8" tall and has strawberry-blond hair, wore a short-sleeved plaid shirt and khaki pants, wire-rimmed glasses and had a well-trimmed beard. He looked over at his parents in the gallery several times and repeatedly pushed his glasses up on his nose. He was very soft-spoken and when the judge asked him if he had anything to say before sentencing, he mumbled something about his progress in treatment.

April 9, 2016 - 2:42pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, drug task force, batavia, news.

    Jerry Riley III

Press release:

The Genesee County Local Drug Enforcement Task Force, comprised of police officers from the Genesee County Sheriff's Office, Batavia Police NET officers, and the Le Roy Village Police Department, concluded an investigation into the illegal possession and sales of narcotics from a Bank Street residence in the City of Batavia with the arrest of a man and woman from Rochester on Thursday afternoon.

Jerry Riley III, 38, of Jay Street, is charged with: two counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd, a Class B felony; criminally using drug paraphernalia, 2nd, a Class A misdemeanor; and unlawful possession of marijuana.

Brianna L. Meacham, 26, of Dewey Avenue, is charged with criminally using drug paraphernalia, a Class A misdemeanor, and unlawful possession of marijuana.

The defendants were arrested Thursday afternoon following the execution of a search warrant at a Bank Street residence. Members of the Batavia PD Emergency Response Team and the Genesee County Drug Task Force executed the warrant and allegedly uncovered a quantity of "crack" cocaine, cocaine hydrochloride, heroin, marijuana and U.S. currency.

Riley was jailed without bail. Meacham was issued appearance tickets and turned over to the Cheektowaga Police Department on an outstanding warrant.

The investigation is continuing and further charges are pending.

Task Force members were also assisted in the investigation by the Genesee County DA's Office and uniform members of Batavia PD.

April 8, 2016 - 2:58pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, batavia, Alabama, Bethany, news.

Damien Allen Boyd, 32, of Meadville Road, Alabama, is charged with fourth-degree grand larceny, five counts of criminal possession of stolen property, 5th, and five counts of petit larceny. Boyd allegedly stole a debit card on Feb. 6, which he used to withdraw money from an ATM. In another case, he is charged with petit larceny for allegedly stealing electronic devices while at a residence on Council House Road, Alabama, on March 22. He was put in GC Jail on Thursday in lieu of $15,000 bail. Both cases were handled by Sheriff's Deputy Bradley Mazur..

Jessica Lynn Garofalo, 28, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with speed exceeding 55 mph, aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, and uninspected motor vehicle on March 25. She was arrested at 5:15 p.m. on April 6 on a bench warrant out of the Town of Bethany Court and released under supervision. She is due in Bethany Town Court on May 17. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Rachel Diehl.

A 39-year-old female who lives on Leicester Street in Perry is charged with falsifying business records, 1st. She was arrested after it was alleged that she made false entries on a financial aid application on Jan. 21, 2015, which allowed her to receive $7,96.50 in student aid while attending Genesee Community College. She was issued an appearance ticket and is scheduled to be in Batavia Town Court on April 25. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Chad Minuto.

April 6, 2016 - 12:42pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, batavia, Le Roy.

Leslie R. Parris III, 33, of Lewis Place, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt in the second degree, criminal contempt in the first degree with physical contact, and an arrest warrant and probation warrant were executed. At 10:12 a.m. on April 1, Parris was arrested on multiple charges following a probation check at 9 Lewis Place in the City of Batavia. He was located hiding in an upstairs bedroom closet contrary to a complete stay away order of protection barring him from the residence. For this he was charged with second-degree criminal contempt. He also had a bench warrant issued by Batavia City Court for failing to appear in court after being charged with first-degree criminal contempt, second-degree criminal contempt, and second-degree harassment stemming from a reported physical domestic incident at the same residence on Aug. 2. Parris was also arrested on a Batavia City Court arrest warrant charging criminal contempt, 1st, stemming from a reported physical domestic incident at the same residence on Oct. 21. Finally, Parris was arrested on a probation warrant for allegedly violating the terms of his probation. He is in Genesee County Jail without bail and is to be in City Court at 11 a.m. on Thursday. The case was investigated by Batavia Police Officer Jason Ivison, assisted by Officer Marc Lawrence.

Emily D. Schramm, 29, of Holland Avenue, Batavia, is charged with disorderly conduct. She was arrested April 4 at 8 a.m. after several neighbors complained to Batavia PD. She was allegedly yelling obscenities for an extended period of time, which disturbed the neighborhood. She was issued an appearance ticket to appear in Batavia City Court on April 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Davis, assisted by Officer Jason Ivison.

William B. McCarrick, 86, of Gateway Drive, Batavia, was arrested for harassment in the second degree following a domestic distrubance on Gateway Drive at 11:30 p.m. on April 1. He was released on his own recognizance and ordered to be in Batavia City Court on April 4. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk, assisted by Officer Felicia DeGroot.

Jammie L. Brown, 24, of East Main Street, Le Roy, is charged with second-degree harassment. He was arrested on April 5 after allegedly making threats of bodily harm to a female who was watching his child while at the GC Courts Facility at 9:40 a.m. on March 31. He was to appear in City Court on April 5. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Davis, assisted by Officer Matthew Lutey.

Nathaniel D. Wilson Jr., 28, of Ellicott Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd. He was arrested on a warrant issued out of Batavia City Court for criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd, on Oct. 11. He was jailed without bail and was to be in City Court this morning. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins, assisted by Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk.

Cory N. Smeltzer, 24, of Oak Orchard Estates, Albion, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon -- metal knuckles. He was allegedly found to be in possession of metal knuckles at 12:32 a.m. on March 26 when police investigated a distrubance on Liberty Street in Batavia. He was issued an appearance ticket and is to appear in City Court on April 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Matthew Wojtaszczyk, assisted by Officer Mitchell Cowen.

Christopher M. Smith, 21, of School Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. He was arrested at 12:36 a.m. on March 31 as the result of an investigation into an incident which occurred on Masse Place a short time earlier. He was issued an appearance ticket and is to be in City Court on April 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Eric Foels, assisted by Officer Peter Flanagan.

Daniel S. Gangi, 34, of Alexander Road, Batavia, was arrested on March 31 after turning himself in at Batavia PD Headquarters on a bench warrant stemming from an incident on July 24. He posted $100 bail, was released, and is to return to City Court Thursday. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Kevin DeFelice.

Passiona C. Culver, 38, of Willow Street, Batavia, was arrested on a warrant issued out of Batavia City Court following her alleged failure to appear to answer traffic tickets that she had been issued on March 1 following a traffic stop. She was released after posting bail and is to appear in City Copurt on April 13. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Mitchell Cowen.

Kenneth Michael Gray, 24, of Lake Street Road, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property. He was arrested on April 5 following a traffic stop in the City of Batavia. He had a warrant for his arrest out of the Town of Batavia Court. He was put in jail on $1,000 bail and is to be in Town of Batavia Court on May 10. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Rachel Diehl.

April 5, 2016 - 12:01pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, Le Roy, news.
kosiorek_james_r120.jpg
James Kosiorek

Press release from Le Roy Police Department:

An investigation of a daytime residential burglary which occurred on March 17 on Lake Street in the Village of Le Roy resulted in the arrest of 23-year-old James R. Kosiorek, who has no reported permanent address.

The investigation started when the homeowner returned home interrupting the burglary and finding a male subject inside of the residence. The burglar had damaged a gun case and was attempting to steal guns and cash from the residence. The burglar fled and the homeowner called 9-1-1.

The burglar was not initially located but a subsequent investigation led to the arrest of Kosiorek on April 4. It is alleged that Kosiorek unlawfully entered the residence with the intent to commit a crime therein, and in doing so damaged the gun safe and removed three guns, attempting to steal them and also stole about $30 in coins and a pellet rifle.

Kosiorek was arrested by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with one count of the Class C felony of burglary in the 2nd degree, three counts of the A-misdemeanor of attempted grand larceny in the 4th degree, one count of the A-misdemeanor of criminal mischief in the 4th degree, one count of the A-misdemeanor of petit larceny and one count of the A-misdemeanor of criminal possession of stolen property in the 5th degree.

Kosiorek was arraigned before the Hon. Michael Welsh of the Le Roy Town Court and committed to the Genesee County Jail in lieu of $25,000 cash bail or $50,000 bond.

April 4, 2016 - 12:24pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, Le Roy, corfu, news.

Larry Brandon Ferrell, 31, of 10 Lathrop Ave., Le Roy was arrested by the Le Roy Police Department after a complaint of an alleged domestic incident which occurred on March 29. It is alleged that Ferrell restrained and choked a female in the presence of two small children and then allegedly took the phone away when the female attempted to call the police. Ferrell was charged with the misdemeanors of second-degree unlawful imprisonment, criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation, criminal mischief in the fourth degree, and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child. Ferrell was arraigned before the Hon. Michael Welsh of the Le Roy Town Court and released under the Supervision of Genesee Justice.

Joshua B. Maternowski, 22, of Tonawanda, is charged with possessing one small plastic baggie containing approximately three grams of marijuana, and Joshua T. Reinhart, 21, of North Tonawanda, is charged with possessing one small plastic baggie containing approximately five grams of marijuana and a multicolored glass smoking pipe containing marijuana residue. At 11:38 a.m. on March 3, Corfu Police Officer Michael Petritz stopped a driver for speeding (going 57 in a 35-mph zone) and having no brake lamp on Route 77. Upon interview of the operator and passengers, Officer Petritz detected a strong odor of burnt marihuana emanating from the vehicle. Officer Petritz requested assistance from Sheriff's Deputy Lonnie Nati and a search of the vehicle allegedly yielded marijuana.

Cody Alan Glogowski, 28, of Grandview Drive, North Java, is charged with endangering the welfare of a child. At 7:48 p.m. on March 31, Glogowski was arrested for allegedly endangering the welfare of a child less that 17 while at Dick's Sporting Goods in the Town of Batavia. No details provided. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia Town Court on May 12. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Michael Lute.

April 4, 2016 - 12:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Hannah Dibble, crime, corfu, pembroke, Bethany.

Hannah C. Dibble is not the "party girl of Pembroke" she once was, her attorney Ben Bonarigo told Judge Micheal F. Pietruzka, in County Court this morning before Pietruzka sentenced Dibble to six months in jail and five years probation for a drunken-driving accident that claimed the life of Alyson D. Krzanak.

Krzanak was an 18-year-old GCC student who hoped to become a Special Ed teacher.

The 23-year-old Dibble, who has gone from a California blonde to a bookish brunette since her last court appearance, told Piertuzka how sorry she was She apologized to Krzanak's family, her family, the families of the other accident victims, the community and any others hurt by her poor decision of Feb. 21, 2015.

Dibble was supposed to be the designated driver that night.

Bonarigo said when he first met with Dibble after the accident, he wasn't sure she really comprehended what she had done, her culpability in the accident. He said he was then "a doubting Thomas."

But as Dibble has proceeded through months of rehabilitation, much of it at her own insistence that she needed more work, through in-patient care to halfway houses and support facilities, he's seen Dibble come to grips with her own actions and reach the level of remorse where she wishes she could go back and if not undo what happened, at least trade places with Krzanak.

This morning's hearing opened with Alyson's parents, Dave and Renee Krzanak, delivering victim impact statements.

Both said Alyson was a joy, a friend, a talented and special person who had much to give the world. Dave said his wife still wakes up at night sometimes crying. He said he thinks about the fact that he will never walk his daughter down the aisle on her wedding day, see her graduate, have children, become a teacher.

Renee said Alyson was a miracle baby. After years of trying to conceive, she was about to undergo a fertility treatment when a doctor told her he couldn't do the treatment. She was already three days pregnant.  If the doctor hadn't noticed that little embryo, Alyson wouldn't have been born.

They always knew Alyson would be special.

"She excelled at everything she tried," Renee said.

"People don't understand what it's like to lose a child until you lose your child," Dave said. "It's a sadness you can't imagine."

Renee said she last spoke to Alyson about 11:30 the night of the accident. 

"Whatever you're doing, be safe," Renee said she told her daughter.

"I'll be safe," Alyson said. "I have a driver."

Alyson trusted her friend, Hannah C. Dibble, Dave and Renee said, and it was a trust misplaced.

"We don't hate Hannah Dibble," Dave said. "We hate the choice she made."

Dibble drove her 1997 Chevrolet Geo across Route 20 coming off Molasses Hill Road in Bethany and it was slammed into by a semi-truck.

Not only was Krzanak killed, three others suffered serious physical injuries: James Scherer, 21, Brandon Danser, 22, and Felecia J. Fazzio, 20.

Assistant DA Will Zickl said through getting to know Dave and Renee as he took them through the mundane legal process of prosecuting Dibble, he came to understand who Alyson was as a person.

"These are fine people," he said.

Their grace and understanding he said were a reflection of the grace and understanding Alyson would want shown to Dibble, which is why there was eventually a plea deal that would cap Dibble's maximum possible sentence to six months in jail and five years probation.

Pietruzka wasn't on the Genesee County bench for any of the prior hearings in the case and as he reviewed the court documents and notes last week, he said he was initially puzzled as to why Noonan agreed to such a seemingly light sentence in such a serious case.

"Now I understand as difficult as that commitment was, it was made after much discussion and consideration and in appreciation of Alyson and who she was as a person," Pietruzka said.

After signing court documents, Dibble was escorted, without handcuffs, from the courtroom, by a deputy. Officially, she's in the custody of the Sheriff's Office, but since the county jail is unable to house female prisoners, she will be transferred to another, as yet undetermined, county jail to serve her six-month term.

Dibble said she hopes to continue her rehabilitation and education and eventually enter the medical profession.

"I take full responsibility for what happened that night," Dibble said. "It's very clear to me what I must do. Every step I make in recovery, I dedicate to her. I must make sure everything in my life changes for the better and everything I do and have done will be in Alyson's name."

April 1, 2016 - 11:22am
posted by Billie Owens in crime, Darien, batavia, news.

Kendra Marie McGuire, 25, of Bryant Street, North Tonawanda, is charged with fourth-degree grand larceny. She was arrested and issued an appearance ticket for April 26 in Darien Town Court. It is alleged that she stole cash and coins valued at more than $1,000 from a residence on Richley Road in Darien in November of 2012. The case was investigated by Sheriff's Deputy Chad Minuto.

Daniel Joseph Kish, 44, of Payne Avenue, of North Tonawanda, was charged with aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd, and unsafe turn/failure to signal at noon on March 17. He was arrested on the charges March 31 after turning himself in on an arrest warrant out of the City of Batavia. Kish allegedly missed city court for prior alleged traffic violations. Bail was set at $250 and he did bail himself out at city court. He was released and is to reappear in city court on May 18. The case was handled by Sheriff's Deputy Michael Lute.

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