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January 20, 2012 - 6:23pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, elba.

An Elba resident is accused of stealing Crest Whitestrips from a local pharmacy and then selling the packages at Pawn King.

Jason Ray Anderson, 30, of Oak Orchard Road, is charged with five counts of falsifying business records in the first degree and petit larceny.

Anderson allegedly stole at least five packages of the dental-whitening product over the course of two days, Dec. 14 and Dec. 15, and then took the stolen items to Pawn King and signed documents stating he legally owned the packages.

Anderson was issued an appearance ticket, returnable to Town of Batavia Court at 1 p.m., Feb. 9.

January 20, 2012 - 8:02am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Le Roy.

Thomas J. Hutton, 28, 9624 Clipnock Road, Stafford, is charged with forcible touching and endangering the welfare of a child. Hutton is accused of forcibly touching/grabbing the intimate parts of a person under age 17 in October. In a separate incident, Hutton is accused of offering cigarettes to a child under 17 in exchange for a sexual act. Following arraignment, Hutton was placed under the supervision of Genesee Justice.

Carrie Quashaye Blunt, 19, of Batavia Stafford Townline Road, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny and unlawful possession of marijuana. Blunt is accused of shoplifting from Walmart. Blunt was taken into custody following an alleged verbal confrontation with a store employee. During the investigation, Blunt was allegedly found to have marijuana concealed in her purse.

January 19, 2012 - 8:35pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

The hit man was named "Shootout" and the target was an alleged criminal associate of two brothers sitting in the Genesee CountyJail. But the simple plan turned out not to be as simple as the brothers reportedly hoped.

"Shootout" couldn't make it to New York, and when the brothers allegedly found another hired gun, it turned out they were allegedly handing their money over to an informant for the Sheriff's Office.

The details of a murder-for-hire case came out in county court today when Justin Barker, 22, one of the brothers allegedly involved in the gruesome plot, entered a guilty plea to the conspiracy charge.

The charges against Derrick Barker, right, are still pending.

Justin entered an "Alford Plea," which means he acknowledges a jury would likely find him guilty of the crime based on evidence presented by the prosecution, but does not admit actual guilt.

The plea requires the prosecution -- in this case, Assistant District Attorney Will Zickl -- to recite the evidence against the defendant.

Zickl said that, in part, the prosecution has copies of notes passed back and forth between Justin and Derrick, an audio recording of Justin and Derrick discussing their alleged plans with a person who turned out to be an informant, and information on the money obtained by the brothers. The prosecution also says it has photographic evidence of the money being turned over to the supposed second hit man, who turned out to be working for the Sheriff's Office.

The original plan, according to Zickl, was for a hit man named "Shootout" to travel from Georgia to New York and kill Benjamin Santiago Jr., who was arrested with the Barker brothers June 2.

The brothers allegedly believed that Santiago had provided information to the police about their suspected criminal activity.

When the brothers allegedly could not secure the services of "Shootout," Derrick allegedly asked another Genesee County Jail inmate -- who was already working with authorities -- if he knew anybody who could do the deed. The informant said he did, but that it would cost the Barker Boys $600 to get the job done.

"The Sheriff's Office observed the $600 being handed over to the cooperative associate and the money was then turned over to the Sheriff's Office and held for evidence," Zickl said.

While Justin did not admit factual guilt to the conspiracy charge, he did plead guilty to a count of  burglary, 3rd.

Justin admitted breaking into the Beaver Brothers Restaurant at Darien Lake Theme Park in September 2009.

Justin Barker, who is facing a two- to six-year prison term, is being held in the jail pending sentencing without bail.

January 19, 2012 - 8:08pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Le Roy.

A 29-year-old Genesee County resident with multiple arrests over the past couple of years could get up to five years in prison as part of a plea deal.

In county court on Thursday, Robert J. Eppolito, most recently of Church Street in Le Roy, entered a guilty plea to criminal contempt, 1st, with a negotiated prison term of one to three years.

Eppolito is also charged with assault, 2nd, for allegedly punching and kicking a person during a confrontation in September in Le Roy.

Public Defender Gary Horton, representing Eppolito on the assault charge, said a plea agreement is in place, including a plea on the criminal contempt charge, that could lock Eppolito up for a maximum of five years.

The two sentences -- for criminal contempt and for the alleged assault -- would be served concurrently.

Eppolito is expected in court next week to answer to the second-degree assault charge.

The cases are separated because they are unrelated.

In court Thursday, Eppolito admitted that he violated a court order by being with a protected person and by drinking alcohol.

Sentencing will take place at 9 a.m., April 23.

Eppolito is being held in the Genesee County Jail.

January 19, 2012 - 8:03am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, genesee county, Sheriff's Office.

The Sheriff's Office plan to convert a jailed drug dealer's car into cash hit a road block Wednesday in the Ways and Means Committee.

A resolution authorizing the Sheriff to auction off the 2005 Chevy truck passed the Public Service Committee on Tuesday, but Wednesday, Legislator Ray Cianfrini had new information on the state law governing the disposal of seized assets.

Cianfrini said he wasn't concerned about the Sheriff's Office getting the money, just that proper procedures be in place and that the law is followed.

"I think there needs to be something more speicific and there needs to be more clarification," Cianfrini said. "I don’t have any trouble with the vehicle going to the Sheriff’s Office for law enforcement purposes, but what about the dispersal (of the proceeds)?"

County Attorney Charles Zambito provided Cianfrini with a copy of the state law, which outlines procedures and proper dispersal of any revenue generated by the sale of seized assets. The law is complex with multiple variables, and while the Sheriff's Office could wind up with some or all of the revenue generated by the sale of the truck, so could the District Attorney's Office, or the state, or the county.

The vehicle was signed over by Matthew Zon, who entered a guilty plea to criminal possession of a controlled substance, 2nd, and was sentenced to prison for possessing and distributing methamphetamine.

Undersheriff William Sheron said that since the vehicle wasn't seized, but signed over to the Sheriff's Office by the defendant as part of a plea deal, the procedures outlined in the law didn't necessarily apply.

"You’re looking at a state forfeiture process that if (a defendant) were reluctant in turning over a vehicle to us, then we would go through this process to seize the vehicle," Sheron said. "It’s now a common practice, as part of a plea bargain, where (the defendant) signs over title of the vehicle to relieve us from going through this process."

Zambito pointed out that even in the plea agreement, the vehicle is signed over "pursuant" to state law, which means, he believes, the process for disposal of the asset is governed by the law.

"We still have to follow the rules about what you do with the property once you get it," Zambito said.

The resolution on disposition of the vehicle was tabled until the matter can be further researched and clarified.

January 18, 2012 - 10:02am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Oakfield.

Scott Michael Combs, 39, of Brockport Holley Road, Holley, is charged wth DWAI-Drugs, moving from lane unsafely and driving across hazardous markings. At 4:11 p.m., Monday, the Sheriff's Office received a report of a black sedan operating erratically in the Village of Oakfield. Deputy Chad Minuto located the vehicle and initiated a traffic stop. Combs was allegedly found to be driving while under the influence of drugs.

David Wayne King, 54, of Batavia Oakfield Townline Road, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. King is accused of shoplifting from Walmart.

A 16-year-old of Central Avenue, Batavia, was arrested on a failure to appear warrant out of Town of Batavia Court. She was allegedly supposed to appear on a petit larceny charge.

January 18, 2012 - 9:48am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

An arrest has been made in the case from September of an employee's purse being stolen at UMMC and the credit cards being used at Batavia stores.

Kiara K. Asante, 21, of 478 Tremont St., Rochester, is charged with forgery, 2nd, criminal possession of stolen property, 4th, criminal possession of stolen property, 5th, and attempted petit larceny.

Asante is currently an inmate in Monroe County Jail and was transported to Batavia City Court yesterday where she was arraigned and returned to Monroe County, where she faces similar charges.

Police believe Asante and two male associates were traveling the state, entering hospitals and colleges and stealing wallets and purses and then using the credit cards. 

Asante and her associations allegedly entered UMMC on Sept. 11, took a purse and then used, and attempted to use, the credit cards at Batavia businesses.

January 18, 2012 - 9:30am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

A 41-year-old man suspected of other property crimes is facing a new burglary charge following an investigation by the Batavia PD into a break-in Dec. 10 at a residence on Thorpe Street.

Charged with burglary, 2nd, is Eric P. Doleman, no permanent address.

Doleman is accused of making forced entry while the residence was unoccupied and stealing a number of wrapped Christmas presents.

For a time about a year ago, Doleman reportedly lived in an apartment on Thorpe Street.

Doleman, currently being held without bail, is also accused of joining with a partner, Frederick H. Robidoux Jr., 49, no permanent address, and breaking into a residence at 10 Maple St., Batavia, Dec. 29.

He is also a suspect in a car break-in at Tops Market on Dec. 13.

January 17, 2012 - 9:42pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, byron, Sheriff's Office.

A 2005 Chevy pickup truck taken by the Genesee County Sheriff's Office as part of the plea deal of a confessed meth dealer will be sold as surplus equipment.

The truck requires at least $2,500 in repairs making it unsuitable for the Sheriff's Office use.

The Public Service Committee today approved a resolution authorizing sale of the truck, but not without some questioning by committee Chairman Ray Cianfrini about why the truck was considered Sheriff's Office property in the first place. He thought it would be county property.

Undersheriff William Sheron explained that under state and federal drug seizure rules, property taken as the fruits of drug dealing must be used for law enforcement purposes. So placing the title of the vehicle under a law enforcement agency's name helps provide proof the vehicle isn't being used for other purposes.

Any proceeds from the sale of the truck will go to the county treasurer, but can only be spent on law enforcement purposes.

Both Le Roy Police and Batavia Police, as members of the Local Drug Enforcement Task Force, share in the proceeds of drug seizures, Sheron said, but typically, the funds are used for equipment or other task force costs.

While the money can't be spent on anything other than a law enforcement purpose, any expenditure must be approved by the Genesee County Legislature.

The truck seizure was part of a plea agreement for Matthew Zon, who entered a guilty plea July 26 to criminal possession of a controlled substance, 2nd. Zon was sentenced to three years in prison and forfeiture of his truck.

While local law enforcement has been involved in a few drug property seizures over the years, the largest may have been in about 1988, Sheron said, when a drug dealer's house in Batavia was taken. The eventual sale of the house netted local law enforcement about $150,000.

Sheron also noted that the forfeiture law has changed a lot over the years.

"They've definitely raised the bar," Sheron said. "It used to be if you found a roach in a car, the car could be taken. That's all changed now. It takes a case of trafficking."

January 17, 2012 - 6:35pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, elba.

A 40-year-old man from Elba was found not guilty today on all three counts related to alleged sexual abuse involving children following a non-jury trial in Genesee County Superior Court.

The trial ended Jan. 7 and Judge Sara Farkas of Niagara County issued her ruling today.

Erik P. Roth was indicted in July of two counts of sexual abuse, 1st, sexual conduct against a child, 2nd, and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.

WBTA's Geoff Redick, who also provided information for this story, followed the trial and reported Jan. 7 that the defense attorney was able to call into question the credibility of some of the testimony given at trial.

The charges stemmed from alleged incidents between November 2004 and March 2006.

January 16, 2012 - 10:48am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, pembroke, Darien, Le Roy.

Thomas J. Smith, 23, of 8048 E. Main Road, Le Roy, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th. Smith was stopped at 2:12 a.m. Saturday on Lake Street, Le Roy, by Le Roy Police.

A 17-year-old of South Lake Road, Pembroke, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and possession/consumption of alcohol under age 21. The youth was allegedly found by Deputy Patrick Reeves to have concealed a quanity of marijuana and alcohol in a duffle bag during a traffic stop on Main Road, Pembroke.

Brandi Elizabeth Schmiedicker, 18, of Genesee Street, Darien, is charged with unlawful dealing with a child. Schmiedicker is accused of hosting an underage drinking party, which was reported through Tipline.

Paul M. Flis, 19, of Salisbury Lane, Blasdell, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Flis was allegedly found behind the wheel in a stopped vehicle on Genesee Street, Darien, at 4:19 a.m. Sunday, by Deputy Kevin McCarthy.

January 15, 2012 - 3:04pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy, synthetic drugs.

UPDATED 3:27 p.m.

Emergency personnel were dispatched Saturday night to an address on Gilbert Street in Le Roy for a report of a youth having a seizure.

Le Roy Ambulance and Le Roy PD arrived on scene and learned that the seizure victim had allegedly smoked "Hammer Head," advertised as "incense" and "not for human consumption."

While on scene, police took into custody Tyler F. Longhini, 20, of 12 Myrtle St., for alleged underage possession of alcohol with intent to consume.

Longhini reportedly agreed to a breath test and allegedly blew a .19 BAC.

Police report that Longhini admitted to consuming Black Velvet whiskey while in the parking lot of McDonald's in the hours prior to police being dispatched to Gilbert Street.

Longhini was issued an appearance ticket and turned over to his grandmother.

Officer Emily Clark said there were three people at the Gilbert Street residence who said they had smoked the "incense," but only one of them suffered a seizure.

She said one of the people on scene said that the "Hammer Head" was purchased at a retail store on the Tonawanda Indian Reservation.

The seizure victim was transported to the hospital by Le Roy Ambulance and the remaining "Hammer Head" product was sent with the patient for medical personnel information.

Clark said this is the first time she's responded to the scene of a medical problem allegedly related to consumption of puportedly synthetic marijuana; however, she has responded to the scene of medical situations involving so called "bath salts." She said she's heard that other members of her department have responded to similar cases.

The victim's name has not been released and we have no information on his or her condition.

Previously: Potentially dangerous synthetic drugs readily available in Genesee County

January 12, 2012 - 9:40pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Le Roy.

Dale A. Swiatowy Jr., 36, of 16 Wood St., Batavia, is charged with two counts of falsely reporting an incident, 3rd. Swiatowy allegedly claimed on Dec. 20 that a man attempted to rob him near Evans Street, cutting him with a knife. On Dec. 23, Swiatowy allegedly reported being stabbed while being robbed on Liberty Street. An investigation by Batavia PD and Investigator Chris Erion of the Sheriff's Office revealed that both reports were allegedly untrue and that the wounds were self-inflicted. (Dec. 20 report; Dec 23 report)

James Russell Hughes, 52, of Oatka Trail, Le Roy, is charged with assault, 3rd. Hughes is accused of head-butting a woman during a domestic incident Jan. 2. An order of protection was issued for the woman at Hughes's arraignment.

Donna L. Richardson, 59, of 43 Main St., Le Roy, is charged with DWI and driving on a suspended registration. Richardson was stopped Thursday evening in the Village of Le Roy by Le Roy Police.

January 12, 2012 - 8:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Le Roy, Grand Jury.

Tony R. Smith is indicted on a count of grand larceny, 3rd. Smith is accused of stealing property valued at about $31,000 from a business on Gilbert Street in Le Roy, including boxes containing brass draw lead nuts, copper draw lead terminals and aluminum blocks, between May and July 2011.

Roy K. Way is indicted on counts of felony DWI and and felony driving with a BAC of .18 or greater. Way is accused of driving while drunk on South Pearl Street and Brooklyn Avenue in Batavia on Sept. 12.

Sara K. McCabe is indicted on a count of felony DWI, three counts of aggravated DWI (driving drunk with a child 15 or under in the car) and one count of operating a motor vehicle without a required interlock device. McCabe is accused of driving drunk with children in the car in the parking lot of McDonald's in Le Roy on Aug. 25.

January 11, 2012 - 11:12am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Le Roy.

David L. Andrews, 24, and Tyshawn T. Ferguson, 21, both of Holland Avenue, Batavia, along with Deylon A. Bovell, 20, of East Main Street, Batavia, are charged with trespass. Andrews, Ferguson and Bovell were allegedly found at College Village after being banned from the property.

Donald Eugene Cameron, 52, of York Road, Le Roy, is charged with harassment, 2nd. Cameron is accused of slapping another person in the head.

January 10, 2012 - 8:00pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Alabama.

April Marie Ground, 22, of Meadville Road, Alabama, is charged with falsely reporting an incident, 3rd. Ground allegedly reported to Deputy Eric Seppala at 2 a.m. Nov. 30, that she was stabbed in the face about an hour earlier by a black female in the parking lot of a Batavia retailer. On Dec. 8, Ground allegedly admitted to Investigator William Ferrando that the stabbing did not occur.

Jason Andrew Barnhart, 24, of Pratt Road, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property, 4th (value more than $1,000), burglary, 3rd, grand larceny (more than $1,000) and falsifying business documents. Barnhart was arrested following an investigation into a burglary and grand larceny reported at 3 p.m. Jan. 4 at a location on Veterans Memorial Drive, Batavia. Barnhart was jailed on $10,000 bail.

Kevin Bruce Martin, 28, of Route 98, Attica, is charged with petit larceny. Martin is accused of shoplifting from Kmart.

January 10, 2012 - 9:48am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, bergen.

A Bergen resident already in jail and charged with multiple sex crimes against children is facing new allegations of sexual acts with children ages 11 and 14.

Stephen Irvine Stone, 45, of South Lake Road, Bergen, is now being charged with predatory sexual assault against children, criminal sexual act, 1st, and criminal sexual act, 2nd.

The alleged victims are Genesee County residents, according to the Sheriff's Office.

Stone is accused of having oral sexual conduct with a person who turned 14 in March, when Stone was 44 years old.

During the summer, Stone, who was then either 44 or 45 years old, allegedly had oral sexual conduct with an 11-year-old.

At the end of December, Stone was arrested and jailed on $100,000 bail after being accused of sodomy, 1st, rape, 1st, and criminal sexual act, 1st.

Underlying those charges were accusations that Stone engaged in oral sexual conduct with a 6-year-old girl in 1997 and 1998, that he engaged in sexual intercourse with a 13-year-old girl by forcible compulsion in 2004 and that Stone engaged in sexual intercourse with a 16-year-old girl by forcible compulsion in 2008.

Stone remains in custody on $100,000 bail pending further legal proceedings.

January 9, 2012 - 3:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

A Batavia resident once shot under mysterious circumstances and later busted with what investigators at the time characterized as a significant amount of narcotics and cash, is facing up to six years in prison after pleading guilty to a drug possession charge.

Carlos A. Torres Jr., 36, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, was on his fourth plea cut-off appearance before Judge Robert C. Noonan on Monday when he entered a guilty plea to criminal possession of a controlled substance, 4th, a Class C felony.

Noonan sets plea cut-off dates, at which point the defendant must either accept a plea bargain, take the his case to trial, or plead guilty with no conditions in place.

When Torres appeared in Noonan's court Dec. 15, it was supposed to be in order to enter a plea or proceed to trial, but Torres, being represented by the public defender, asked for a new attorney.

At his next appearance, Torres was close to retaining an attorney, and by the following appearance last week, Torres had hired an attorney but the attorney had not yet had time to review the case file.

In court today, Torres was soft spoken and kept shaking his head regretfully as Noonan went over his rights to ensure that Torres knew what he was doing in entering a guilty plea.

Torres admitted to possessing cocaine with a weight of at least a half ounce.

He will be sentenced in April. At a minimum, Torres will receive two years in prison.

January 9, 2012 - 2:34pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Darien.
Kaufman Hughes

Two men from Lockport have been arrested and charged with 11 counts of burglary in the third degree.

The men are accused of entering eleven cabins at Darien Lake Theme Park sometime during the fall and stealing 11 HDTVs.

The park was closed for the season at the time.

Arrested and released on their own recognizance were Robert Wakefield Hughes, 26, of Cottage Road, Lockport, and Ryan James Kaufman, 23, of East High Street, Lockport.

Hughes and Kaufman were taken into custody by Investigator William Ferrando.

January 9, 2012 - 2:06pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

An Ellicott Street resident is facing at least two years in prison after pleading guilty to criminal mischief, 2nd, in Genesee County Court on Monday.

Paul C. Wapniewski, 55, was accused of burglarizing Delavan's Restaurant on Evans Street.

In the course of the crime, Wapniewski allegedly caused more than $2,500 damage to the property.

According to District Attorney Lawrence Friedman, Wapniewski cut himself on broken glass when entering the building and the blood evidence found there connected Wapniewski to the scene. Friedman said the DNA test demonstrates a mere one in 300 billion chance of the DNA being from the blood of a person other than Wapniewski.

Friedman discussed the evidence prior to Wapniewski's guilty plea because Wapniewski was entering what is known as an "Alford Plea." 

When a defendant enter's an "Alford Plea" he is not admitting to the crime, just pleading guilty to the charge with the knowledge that the evidence against him would likely lead to a jury finding him guilty, and if so, would likely lead to a harsher sentence.

As a second felony offender, prison time is mandatory for Wapniewski, and sentencing guidelines means Wapniewski is facing from two to four years in state prison.




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