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September 4, 2012 - 12:05pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Darien.

Larry J. Jones, 35, of Hamlin Street, Buffalo, is charged with criminal possession of a forged instrument, 1st, a Class C felony, and tampering with physical evidence, a Class E felony. Jones allegedly tried to buy French fries at Darien Lake Amusement Park using a fake $50 bill. An employee suspected the bill of being counterfeit and notified security. Jones allegedly produced a large number of $50 bills also believed to be counterfeit. While being transported to the security trailer, Jones allegedly tried stuffing additional fake $50 bills he possessed in his mouth and eating them. Security officers were able to prevent consumption of the bills and, though damaged, they were also determined to be allegedly counterfeit. Jones was jailed without bail. The case was investigated by Deputy Patrick Reeves and Investigator Kris Kautz.

Shawn Anthony Suarez, 23, of Bernhardt Drive, Snyder, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Suarez is accused of possessing marijuana at a concert at Darien Lake on Aug. 29. Also charged was Samantha Lee Jindra, 18, of Westminster Road, West Seneca.

Antonio Velazquez-Hernandez, 25, of Oak Orchard Road, Albion, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, reckless driving, driving left of pavement markings, failure to keep right, no signal, unlicensed operator. Velazquez-Hernandez was stopped at 2:50 a.m., Sunday, on Route 98 in Batavia by Deputy Howard Carlson. Velazquez-Hernandez was also allegedly in the United States illegally and was turned over to the U.S. Border Patrol.

September 4, 2012 - 11:43am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Alabama.

An Alabama man indicted on 28 counts of sexual abuse with alleged acts going back 13 years entered a not guilty plea and had his bail reduced in county court this morning.

Earl Francis Sprague, 42, of Church Street, Alabama, can get of jail pending further court proceedings if he can come up with $25,000 cash or secure a $50,000 bond.

He was being held on $50,000 cash or $500,000 bond.

Under a review system developed by attorneys and judges that helps determine a defendant's suitability for release under supervision or some level of bail, Sprague scored 11 points out of 20 possible.

Normally, 11 points would make Sprague eligible for supervised release. But given the possible lengthy prison term for Sprague if convicted of more than one count of the lengthy indictment, and a prior offense when Sprague was a youth, Noonan said some level of bail was appropriate to help assure Sprague's appearance at future court dates.

Attorney William Harper argued that his client had no adult criminal convictions, though he did have a probation violation in 2009 (his last previous contact with law enforcement).

Harper also said Sprague had some "dim hope" of retaining his current job if he were able to make bail, though Harper acknowledged the current accusations against Sprague diminished his chances of keeping that job.

He said, however, Sprague was considered a good employee.

District Attorney Lawrence Friedman said that while the person who conducted the bail evaluation scored Sprague at 11 points, she wouldn't have had access to Sprague's youthful offender status records. As a youthful offender, Sprague was accused of what Friedman said was charged under the former sodomy statute at the time and convicted of sexual abuse. That was in 1986.

"That is a relevant factor," Friedman said. "He also expressed a use of alcohol and marijuana."

Friedman requested no modification in the bail status for Sprague.

Noonan noted that if Sprague is convicted of multiple counts of the indictment, he would face possible consecutive prison terms on each count.

Sprague is accused of sexually abusing a single child victim over a period of years starting in 1999.

September 3, 2012 - 10:25pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy, Pavilion.

Four people have been charged with burglary following a three-and-a-half month investigation by the Sheriff's Office into a pair of break-ins at a residence on Telephone Road, Pavilion.

The burglaries occurred at 2:18 a.m., May 18, and 2:45 a.m., May 21.

In the first break-in, cash was stolen from a wallet and a purse on the kitchen table.

In the second case, three people reportedly entered the home and took a safe containing cash and savings bonds.

Arrested where:

  • John H. O'Shea, 20, of Wolcott Street, Le Roy. He is charged with two counts of burglary, 2nd, and one count of grand larceny, 2nd. He is accused of being involved in the May 21 burglary. He was arrested June 1 and has been held in jail on $25,000 bail since.
  • Dylan J. Hawkins, 20, of Morrow Road, Pavilion, is charged with burglary, 2nd, grand larceny, 4th, and grand larceny, 2nd. Hawkins is accused of partaking in both burglaries. He was jailed on June 7 on $25,000 bail.
  • Anthony J. Gonzales, 20, of Myrtle Street, Le Roy, is charged with burglary, 2nd, and grand larceny, 2nd. He allegedly participated in the May 21 break-in. Gonzales was released under supervision of Genesee Justice.
  • Joshua M. Bratcher, 22, of Lake Street, Le Roy, is charged with burglary, 2nd, and grand larceny, 4th. Bratcher was allegedly involved in the May 18 break-in. Bratcher was arrested Friday and jailed on $20,000 bail.

O'Shea was accused in July of falsely reporting a theft of jewelry and marijuana in Le Roy.

The burglaries were investigated by Deputies John Baiocco, Frank Bordonaro, Matthew Butler and Investigator Roger Stone. The Sheriff's Office was assisted by Det. John Condidorio, Officer Darryle Rob and Officer Emily Clark, of the Le Roy PD.

The investigation is ongoing, according to the Sheriff's Office.

September 3, 2012 - 8:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, byron, pembroke, Stafford, corfu.

Sarah Patricia Nichols, 29, of Pinehollow Drive, Batavia, is charged with falsely reporting an incident, 3rd. Nichols is accused of falsely reporting a larceny from her vehicle while it was parked in the Walmart parking lot. An investigation by Deputy Brad Mazur led Mazur to believe the larceny did not take place.

Patricia M. Anderson, 27, of 6281 Walkers Corners Road, Byron, is charged with petit larceny. Anderson is accused of shoplifting from the Kwik Fill 99 at Jackson and Ellicott streets. Anderson was located at a residence on Central Avenue following a complaint of the theft.

Francis Scott Smith, 18, of Lake Avenue, New York, is charged with petit larceny. Smith was taken into custody in the lobby of city court on a warrant out of Batavia Town Court. Smith was jailed on $250 bail.

Jennifer J. Maggio, 27, of Kingston Road, Leicester, is charged with petit larceny. Maggio is accused of shoplifting $95.32 in merchandise from Kmart by hiding it in her purse.

Raymond Michael Pfalzer, 41, of Brown Road, Corfu, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Pfalzer was charged in connection with an accident at Wilkinson Road and Brown Road, Batavia, at 8:20 p.m., July 22, in which he was seriously injured.

Angela A. Starling, 30, of Pembroke, is charged with disorderly conduct/fighting/violent behavior and harassment, 2nd. Starling was arrested by State Police following the report of an incident at Godfrey's Pond at 10:11 p.m., Saturday. No further details were released.

September 2, 2012 - 11:44am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

A fight is reported at Ellsworth and Manhattan avenues and it is physical at this time.

Police are dispatched.

One person is leaving in a black GMC pickup truck.

There is reportedly an off-duty police officer, unknown from what jurisdiction, who is reportedly trying to intercede.

Police have located and stopped a woman who was reportedly involved in the altercation.

UPDATE 12:03 p.m.: Police officers are conducting interviews. No further updates available.

August 31, 2012 - 8:48pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, Pavilion.

A fight among four people is reported at 6698 Ellicott St. in Pavilion. The parties are separated and Sheriff's deputies are on scene. Alcohol is reportedly a factor.

August 31, 2012 - 1:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Oakfield, Darien, Pavilion.

Timothy J. Petrie, 41, of Telephone Road, Pavilion, is charged with one count of sexual abuse, 1st. Petrie is accused of sexually abusing a child under age 11 at his house several years ago. Following an investigation by Deputy Matthew Fleming with assistance from Deputy Matthew Butler, Deputy Cory Mower and Investigator Roger Stone. Petrie was arrested Aug. 24 and arraigned in Town of Pavilion Court and released under supervision of Genesee Justice. UPDATE: In July 2013, a jury acquitted Petrie on all counts.

A 16-year-old resident of Warsaw is charged with petit larceny. The youth was arrested at 6:35 p.m., Thursday, by State Police in the Town of Darien.

Christian M. Hilken, 21, of Pike Road, Batavia, is charged with unlawful dealing with a child. Hilken is accused of hosting an underage drinking party on Wednesday evening.

Henry Lee Banks, 42, of South Main Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Banks is accused of stealing scrap metal from a business on Orchard Street, Oakfield.

August 30, 2012 - 2:01pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Oakfield, Darien, Le Roy, Pavilion.

Kyle W. Nash, 25, of 7 Myrtle St., Le Roy, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and felony aggravated unlicensed operation. Nash was involved in a motor vehicle accident Tuesday night in the area of 76 North St., Le Roy. Nash was reportedly looking for an item inside the vehicle and his car veered to the right and struck the rear of a tractor-trailer parked alongside the roadway. Two passengers in the vehicle were transported to area hospitals with non-life-threatening injuries. Following arraignment, Nash was jailed on $5,000 bail.

David Bruce Piechowicz, 36, Eagan Drive, Lackawanna, is charged with trespass. Piechowicz allegedly went to the home of his ex-girlfriend after being told to stay away.

James J. Angelo, 48, of Churchville, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Angelo was stopped by State Police on Route 77 in the Town of Darien at 12:05 a.m., today.

Reuben L. Bumpus, 29, of Newark, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08. Bumpus was stopped by State Police in the City of Batavia, at 12:35 a.m., today.

Walter L. Knickerbocker, 54, of South Street, Pavilion, is charged with unlawful growing of cannabis. Knickerbocker was arrested by State Police at 12:45 p.m., Tuesday. No further details were released.

A 14-year-old from Albion is charged with petit larceny after being arrested by State Police for allegedly shoplifting at Kmart on Tuesday. No further details were released.

Kelvin B. Murphy, 39, of Batavia, is charged with criminal trespass, 2nd, and second-degree harassment/physical contact. Murphy was arrested by State Police Tuesday for an alleged incident reported at 1:01 a.m. in Oakfield. He was ordered held in jail, no bail information given in the report. No further details released.

August 30, 2012 - 9:57am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, darien lake, Darien.

The following people were arrested Wednesday by the Sheriff's Office during the Uproar Rockstar Energy Drink Concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center.

(Redacted upon request), 44, of Owens Street, Corning, is charged with trespass after allegedly refusing to leave the concert venue after being told to leave several times. xxxx was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail in lieu of $100 bail.

Tyler W. Seneca, 27, of Route 438, Irving, is charged with disorderly conduct and resisting arrest after allegedly throwing items at deputies and physically refusing to be taken into custody. Seneca was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail in lieu of $500 bail.

Deanna L. Russo, 39, of Lake Road, Webster, is charged with harassment, 2nd, and three counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, after allegedly striking a security guard while being ejected from the venue and was then found to have possessed a quantity of three different controlled prescription drugs. Russo was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail with no bail.

Gregory J. Brown, 35, of Louth Street, St. Catherines, Ontario, Canada, is charged with DWI and with a BAC of .08 or greater after allegedly operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated on a public walkway outside the concert venue. Brown was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail in lieu of $250 bail.

Jeffrey J. Logal, 30 of Virgil Avenue, Buffalo, is charged with harassment, 2nd, after allegedly pushing and then grabbing a concert usher.

Stephanie N. Nonnemacher, 27, of Cedar Wood Terrace, Rochester, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th.

Jeffrey R. Mason, 21, of Linden Street, Cheektowaga, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th.

Timothy J. Slotta, 35 of Long Hallow Road, Turtle Point, Pa., was arrested on a warrant out of Cattaragus County for an alleged violation of probation.

The following people were issued appearance tickets for alleged unlawful possession of marijuana:

Albert A. Garcia, 48, of Dudley Avenue, Niagara Falls
Jordan P.Powell, 24, of Eagle Street, Medina
Sherie R. Seefeldt, 31, of Eagle Street, Medina
Kayla R. Tubinis, 21, of 86th Street, Niagara Falls
Reuben P. Satarian, 24, of Joanne Circle, Niagara Falls
Kelly L. Dale, 43, of Dowland Crescent, Burlington, Ontario, Canada
Daniel L. Aldrich, 39, of Hinman Road, Little Valley
Brandon J. Wyatt, 29, of Fawn Avenue, Salamanca
Kyle R. Gehrek, 24, of Westchester Boulevard, Kenmore
William R. Whaley II, 30, of Stone Road, Rochester
Broc W. Vanskiver, 25, of State Route 227, Burdett
Tyler P. Renaldo, 21, of Shirley Road, North Collins
Ian M. Brennan, 25, of Park Avenue, Lockport
Ryan S. Buczkowski, 19, of Castlewood Drive, Cheektowaga
Robert M. Souter, 39, of West Avenue, West Seneca
Steven R. Maskell, 19, of North Byron Road, Elba
Elliot P. Arnold, 25, of Terry Street, Byron
Gala K. Tubera, 19, of Oliver Street, Rochester
Harrison C. Delatante, 20, of Oliver Street, Rochester
Matthew R. Meiser, 23, of Newberry Lane, Lancaster
Justin J. Holler, 23, of Swamp Road, Cattaraugus

The following individuals were issued citations for alleged possession of alcohol under age 21.

Kerry R. Meissner, 19, of Bernadette Circle, Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada
Richard I. Fancher Jr., 18, of Pine Street, Franklinville

August 29, 2012 - 1:15pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, pembroke, Darien.

Richard Russell Vetter, 57, of Main Street, Varysburg, is charged with grand larceny and 10 counts of falsifying business records. Vetter is accused of making false metal purchase entries into business records while employed at Stanley Staba & Sons in Darien and writing himself checks in excess of $7,000.

Brian Mark Mahaney, 24, of Indian Falls Road, Pembroke, is charged with reckless endangerment. Mahaney is accused of being involved in a domestic dispute. He allegedly drove a motor vehicle eastbound on Indian Falls Road, crossed the center line into the path of a westbound vehicle. The westbound vehicle reportedly had to drive off the pavement to avoid a collision. Mahaney then allegedly followed the vehicle to a residence and threatened to fight the vehicle's occupants.

Thomas Jacob Wolcott, 26, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt, 1st, and harassment, 2nd. Wolcott is accused of being involved in a physical altercation with a protected person whom he was ordered not to engage in any criminal act against. He allegedly grabbed the victim by her neck and threw her about a room. Wolcott was jailed on $2,500 bail.

Steven James Scott, 21, of Dellinger Avenue, Batavia, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .10 or greater, open container and unlawful possession of marijuana. Scott was taken into custody following a report at 8:36 p.m., Tuesday, of a motorist needing assistance on Route 33 in Bergen. The motorist reportedly attempted to flag down passing cars. Upon investigation, deputies Joseph Graff and Matthew Butler identified Scott as the operator of a motor vehicle who was allegedly driving while drunk.

Triton Adam Drock, 18, of Buell Street, Batavia, is charged with endangering the welfare of a child and sexual abuse, 2nd. Drock allegedly had an ongoing relationship with a minor female. Drock is accused of acting in a manner injurious to the physical and moral welfare of a minor. Following arraignment in Darien Town Court, Drock was released on his own recognizance and issued a stay-away order for the minor female.

August 29, 2012 - 12:49pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Alabama.

Earl Francis Sprague, 42, of 1366 Church St., Alabama, who was arrested over the weekend on two charges of sexual abuse has been indicted on 26 such Class D felonies by a Genesee County Grand Jury.

The indictment alleges sexual abuse in the first degree against a child under age 11 on 28 separate occasions from 1999 through 2009.

Sprague, who is accused of abusing a single victim, was also charged with endangering the welfare of a child, a Class A misdemeanor.

August 29, 2012 - 12:14pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, pembroke.

A prominent Rochester attorney and a former reality TV personality are in the national news today after they were arrested in Pembroke on Tuesday morning.

James Doyle, 54, of Rochester is accused of DWI, refusing a breath test, providing alcohol to a person under age 21 and patronizing a prostitute.

Alicia Guastaferro, 20, of Williamsville, is charged with criminal Impersonation, criminal possession of a controlled substance and prostitution.

At age 16, Guastaferro appeared in the reality TV series "Wife Swap," a series on the Lifetime Network that involves unhappy spouses switching families for a week.

In the episode Guastaferro appeared in, viewers learned the teenage beauty queen received a Christmas present from her parents every single day.

Doyle has made several statements to the media, including WHAM 13, denying all of the charges. He described Guastaferro as a family friend.

August 28, 2012 - 9:39am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime.

A Wichita, Kan., man who enticed a 14-year-old Batavia girl into sending him naked pictures of herself through text messages was sentenced in Federal Court yesterday to more than 26 years in prison.

Shane M. McClelland, 26, Wichita, Kan., was convicted in a jury trial in May on one count of producing child pornography.

During trial, prosecutors presented evidence that McCelland used the Internet to strike up a relationship with a 14-year-old girl in Batavia.

At McClelland’s request, the girl sent photographs of herself naked to McClelland. The mother of one of the girl’s friends became aware of what happened and reported it to police.

Det. Todd Crossett and Office Jay Andrews initiated the investigation in Batavia and during the course of the investigation Crossett posed as a 14-year-old girl and communicated with McClelland.

Crossett testified at McClelland's trial in May about the chain of evidence and his exchange of text messages with McClelland.

After McClelland's conviction, Crossett said, "He was definitely a sexual predator. He had a past history of doing this sort of thing and he does it again soon after he gets out of prison. That indicates the kind of person he is."

At sentencing in Federal Court in Wichita, prosecutors asked the judge to take into consideration McClelland’s prior conviction in September 2004 in Sedgwick County District Court for aggravated indecent liberties with a 13-year-old girl.

According to

McClelland's lawyer argued 20 percent of teens are "sexting" and said the sentence amounted to cruel and unusual punishment. He said the 14-year-old was old enough to know better.

August 28, 2012 - 9:16am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Alabama.

A 42-year-old Alabama man has been charged with two counts of sex abuse in the first degree for allegedly abusing a child.

The alleged abuse was first reported recently, but the initial allegation goes back to 1999, when the child was of preschool age.

Investigators suspect there were more alleged incidents of abuse in the following years against a single victim, but the initial two counts cover alleged incidents in 1999.

Additional charges are pending against Earl Francis Sprague, a Church Street resident in the Town of Alabama.

The alleged abuse took place at another location in Genesee County.

According to the Sheriff's Office press release the child was "in the care" of Sprague at the time of the alleged abuse.

Sprague was arraigned in Town of Alabama Court and jailed on $50,000 bail.

August 27, 2012 - 1:40pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, crime, alexander.

Daniel E. Plath is indicted by the Genesee County Grand Jury on one count of DWI, a Class E felony, for driving a 2007 GMC pickup truck on Old Creek Road in Alexander on May 12 while allegedly intoxicated. He is also indicted on a second felony count of DWI for allegedly having a BAC of .08 or more. In count three of the indictment, Plath is accused of aggravated unlicensed operation for allegedly driving the truck while intoxicated and without a valid driver's license. His license was invalidated following a DWI conviction in 2007, according to the DA's office.

Gary R. Dean is indicted by the Genesee County Grand Jury on one misdemeanor count of driving while intoxicated on April 24 in Alexander. He allegedly drove a 2007 Chevrolet on state routes 98 and 20 and in a parking lot on Broadway Road while intoxicated. In count two, he is accused of aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree, a Class E felony, for allegedly driving without a driver's license while intoxicated. His license was revoked following a DWI conviction in 2001, according to the DA's office.

August 27, 2012 - 11:47am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Oakfield, Le Roy, Stafford, bergen.

Brandon Charles Smart, 35, of Bank Street, Batavia, is charged with trespass. Smart was arrested on a warrant out of Le Roy Town Court charging him with trespass. The charge stems from a June 13 incident at Buttermilk Falls, off North Road, Le Roy, in which Smart fell to an outcrop of rocks at the falls and had to be rescued. 

Smart is also charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .18 or greater, speed not reasonable and prudent, moving from lane unsafely and unlicensed operation. Smart was reportedly involved in a single-car property damage accident at 1:11 a.m., Saturday, on Knowlesville Road, Alabama.

Nicholas Joseph Pascucciq, 22, of Main Road, Stafford, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and possession of a hypodermic instrument. Pascucciq turned himself in on a county court bench warrant on charges of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 4th and 5th. After his arrest, the additional charged were issued stemming from an incident in Le Roy on July 14. Pascucciq was held on the warrant.

Walter B. Hale, 34, of Oakfield, is charged with felony DWI and three counts of felony aggravated DWI. Hale was charged under Leandra's Law for allegedly driving while intoxicated with three children in his car. Hale was stopped on Route 63 by State Police. According to troopers, he failed a field sobriety test and blew a BAC of .09. Hale was jailed on $5,000 bail.

Christopher J. White, 56, of North Chili, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .18 or greater and unlawful possession of marijuana. White was stopped on Route 33 in the Town of Bergen by State Police for allegedly failing to dim his headlights. He was allegedly in possession of marijuana and a glass smoking pipe. According to troopers, White's BAC was .22.
August 26, 2012 - 1:59pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, business, darien lake, Darien, darien lake theme park.

Saturday was the first big test for a new pedestrian access policy at Darien Lake and while officials are satisfied with the results overall, they admit there are some kinks to work out.

On the positive side, officials said, traffic control after the concert was much better than used to be expected for a sold-out concert.

On the negative side, there was some confusion over what to do with taxis, how to handle passenger drop-offs and dealing effectively with people trying to circumvent the policy.

Cherry Hill Campground was open for concert parking and apparently tried to establish a private vehicle shuttle service for its patrons. 

Part of the terms of service now for ticket holders is there is only one vehicle entry and one vehicle exit per person and you must have a valid ticket to come onto the property.

Drivers of cars observed coming off The Hill were threatened with arrest for criminal trespass when they were observed coming in through Employee Road and then leaving immediately.

Many of the dozens of people who tried to walk in through Employee Road managed to bum rides from other concertgoers in cars. Of course, they became pedestrians after the concert trying to exit the venue on Employee Road.

Those people were told either to walk to the main gate to leave or to the exit point at the east side of the property.

Officials wanted to keep Employee Road open for vehicle traffic, so a strict no-pedestrian rule was enforced.

"The overall objective is just to make the traffic flow smoother and just create a safer environment for our guests," said Darien Lake General Manager Bob Montgomery. "To that extent, it’s working. If we’ve got a few little leaks here and there, we’ll correct them were we can. If people are really working hard to beat the system, I guess they can if they think it’s really worth all the effort."

Some issues will just work themselves out, Montgomery said, as guests become more familiar with the new system and fewer of them are willing to hassle with private lot parking.

From just before 5 p.m. until shortly after 8 p.m., vehicle traffic to Darien Lake was gridlocked from both the south and the north.

While some concertgoers blamed the new parking policy for the stop-and-go entry, Chief Deputy Gordon Dibble, of the Sheriff's Office, said he doesn't see the connection.

"We've had traffic being backed up in the past when the private lots were open, so I don't see that being the issue," Dibble said.

What surprised authorities, Dibble said, was how relatively few concertgoers started arriving at noon or one o'clock.

Typically, a Saturday concert attracts a lot of early arrivals, and this show didn't for some reason. Many people waited until later in the afternoon to arrive, which meant more people trying to drive in closer to showtime.

Dibble said he spoke to some patrons prior to the show who said they expected other concertgoers to come early, so they decided to come late.

There also seemed to be a higher number of concertgoers coming from the south of Darien.

"There’s something about this place," Dibble said, "that no matter how long you work out here, when you think you’ve got it figured out, there’s just something to do with who the band is, whether they're drawing from the Rochester market, the Syracuse market, the Canadian market, that makes a little different pattern. To a degree it’s unpredictable, it really is."

The worst traffic-related incident prior to the show occurred just before 8 p.m. when the passenger of a vehicle stuck in traffic jumped out of the car and ran into the path of a motorcycle heading south.

Jessica Freeman, 23, of Rochester, suffered head and facial injuries and is in critical condition at ECMC, where she was flown by Mercy Flight.

Prior to the show, concertgoers turned away at Employee Road were clearly frustrated, some of them, but didn't hassle police or security about the policy.

One group of three young men did manage to talk their way onto Employee Road and enter the venue.

Apparently, they had bought their tickets and made their reservations at Cherry Hill Campground in June. After the new policy was announced, one of them had an email exchange with officials at Darien Lake and was told, incorrectly by somebody, that they would be allowed to walk onto the property.

Gerald Rakestraw, VP of development for Darien Lake's owner, Herschend Family Entertainment, was at property Saturday both observing and supervising implementation of the new policy.

He snapped an iPhone picture of the young man's email and then allowed the trio to walk up Employee Road into the venue.

The biggest conflicts of the night came after the concert was over and some people tried to exit the venue on Employee Road.

Rakestraw had predicted some 500 people would try to leave via Employee Road -- far fewer than the thousands walking out in concerts past.

The actual number of pedestrians trying to leave on Employee Road was probably far fewer than 500.

Most were cooperative when told to head in another direction.

One gentleman who was highly intoxicated got lost in the employee parking lot (which was used for regular guest parking last night).

Two people were arrested after apparently wearing out their welcome, so to speak, arguing with deputies about the pedestrian policy.

Rebecca A. Pickem, 25, of Olive Drive, Baldwinsville, discussed the situation with a couple of different cops, went round and round with Sgt. Tom Sanfratello. After several minutes of discussion, Sanfratello told her to leave or she'd be arrested.

Her alleged reply: "I guess you'll have to arrest me," which at that point became a refusal to follow an officer's order, so she was arrested.

Her companion, Tyler A. Vincent, 24, of Olive Drive, Baldwinsville, wouldn't leave and was also arrested.

Reportedly, Pickem and Vincent had parked their vehicle more than two miles from the concert facility and were apparently concerned about how to get back to their car.

The thing is, if Pickem and Vincent had been a little more patient, they were two minutes away from a cab ride to their car.

Sgt. Steve Mullen had called a cab for them.

There was another group of young ladies, four of them, who were stranded at the park. They were reportedly staying at the Attican Motel. The Attican charged them $20 for a shuttle ride to and from the show, according to Mullen. When the driver dropped them off, he reportedly informed them the shuttle might not be available for a ride back to the hotel.

When the women called the motel, they were reportedly told the van had broken down (Note, I was on Employee Road when I saw the van, with Attican Motel written on it, pull into the parking area).

Mullen called a cab for the young ladies and escorted them out to Sumner Road and waited with them for the cab.

By the time Mullen returned to bring Pickem and Vincent to their cab, they were already in custody.

While all of this was going on, there was a young Canadian woman in full agitation mode, running around from one cop or security guard to another yelling at them, hurling insults and threatening to call the Canadian Embassy.

Deputies said she had been difficult to deal with prior to the concert when she tried to walk into the venue.

After the show, she claimed her "bestfriend" had gotten separated from her and her other friend during the concert, three hours prior to her first notifying law enforcement.

She gave three different ages for her missing friend and changed the clothing description.

Any time an official would try to ask her questions about her friend and their travel plans, she would just start yelling again.

She also claimed she wanted to walk out of the facility, but continued to yell at deputies for not doing more to find her friend.

At one point, she yelled at a deputy, "I hope your daughter gets raped some day."

There was another young woman from Canada who was also missing her travel companion, another young woman. She was calm, but clearly worried about her friend.

At 1:30 a.m., Darien Lake security officials were still involved in trying to help both young women locate their friends.

At 1:30 a.m., all Darien Lake parking lots were empty, which under normal sold-out concert nights was at least an hour earlier than might be expected.

Dibble said with Sumner Road free of traffic from private lots, it was much easier to get cars out of the parking lots. Both lanes of Sumner Road could be used for traffic leaving the facility. If not for a couple of minor accidents on Sumner Road, patrons would have gotten out even quicker.

While there were 15 arrests at the concert, the majority of them were related to the new policy, such as three people accused of climbing the new fence to try and gain access to the property.

I spent two hours at the entry gate known as "South PAC," where concert security will bring any unruly patrons for deputies to deal with and potentially arrest or release. South PAC is normally bustling with activity during a concert. During the two hours I was there, not one patron was escorted from the concert.

Batavia resident Carrie Hylkema, who's attended several country shows at Darien Lake, was at the show Saturday as a volunteer for a beer concession set up to raise money for Batavia Ramparts.

She said the atmosphere Saturday was very different from any country show she had ever attended at Darien Lake.

She said concertgoers were much less aggressive than she's seen in the past.

"A lot of times we come driving in, whether we’re working the concert or just going to the concert, you can see it’s out of control before you even come into the gates," she said. "It just seemed more managed tonight. My husband I both commented tonight that it just seemed more in control."

Some of the explanation for the mellower atmosphere, Dibble said, is the fact that so many people came later to the show, got caught in traffic, and had less time to get intoxicated in the parking lot before the concert.

"I’d like to think the underage drinking work that we’ve been doing is paying off, too," Dibble said.

There were 48 underage drinking citations issued Saturday, which is far fewer than have been issued at big country concerts over the past two seasons.

Among the kinks in the system Saturday was what to do with taxi cabs. The plan was, officials said, to only allow cabs into a designated area after 10 p.m. -- for pick up only, not for drop off. But cabs were entering the facility prior to the show.

There was also some confusion over how parents dropping off concertgoers were to enter and leave the facility.

Montgomery acknowledged he and his staff are going to need to figure out these issues for future concerts.

"What we'll do with the team here is, we'll meet again tomorrow and kind of put those issues on the table," Montgomery said. "There's nothing big, nothing that would be a big concern. You're right about the issue with taxis and where do we place them. We want to go back specifically and address that. That's one of the issues that stood out."

Traffic entering the venue, heading toward the main gate, backed up on Sumner Road, with a group of pedestrians in the distance getting into a passenger vehicle offering them a lift.

Pedestrians being told they would not be allowed to walk into the venue.

This vehicle came down off The Hill and is heading toward the main gate.

A trio of concertgoers (third person already in the back seat) get a lift into the venue.

A vehicle that had allegedly previously come off The Hill and delivered concertgoers into the venue gets a trespass warning, and would not be allowed in with another group.

Another driver allegedly issued a trespass warning.

This gentleman was eventually allowed to walk on Employee Road and into the venue after displaying an email from Darien Lake saying that he would be allowed in on foot.

Subject taken into custody after allegedly refusing a police officer order to leave the facility.

Concertgoers party in a 1968 stretch Checker Cab.

A reportedly highly intoxicated individual is taken into custody, charged with disorderly conduct, after allegedly causing a disturbance in a parking lot at about 11 p.m.

This photo submitted by a reader. One concertgoer decided to drive his tractor to the show.

August 26, 2012 - 11:23am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, darien lake, Darien.

NOTE: This was the first sold out concert after the new no-pedestrian access rule to the Darien Lake property came into full force. I did a ride along with the Sheriff's Office for the night and will have a report, with photos, later.

The following people were arrested by the Sheriff's Office in connection with the Jason Aldean Concert at Darien Lake Performing Arts Center.

Matthew K. Skelton, 26, of Coe Avenue, Oakfield, is charged with disorderly conduct after allegedly yelling profanities and causing a disturbance in the parking lot. Skelton was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail in lieu of $200 bail.

Rebecca A. Pickem, 25, of Olive Drive, Baldwinsville, is charged with trespass after allegedly refusing to leave the Darien Lake Employee Road area after attempting to exit the venue as a pedestrian. Pickem was arraigned in Darien Town Court and released on her own recognizance.

Tyler A. Vincent, 24, of Olive Drive, Baldwinsville, is charged with trespass after allegedly refusing to leave the Darien Lake Employee Road, area after attempting to exit the venue as a pedestrian. Vincent was arraigned in Darien Town Court and releaed on his own recognizance.

Nicole L. Louiseize, 23, of Summerhill Drive, Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada, is charged with trespass after allegedly entering the concert venue after being denied entry and told not to reenter. Louiseize was arraigned in Darien Town Court and remanded to jail in lieu of $400 bail.

David W. Pitts, 30, of Buford Deli Townline Road, Scotland, Ontario, Canada, is charged with DWI and aggravated DWI with a BAC of .18 percent or more after allegedly operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated in the campgrounds.

Brian A. Rupe, 29, of Ransom Road, Lancaster, is charged with trespass after allegedly jumping the fence to enter the Darien Lake property.

Nicholas J. Pagano, 19, of Savage Road, Holland, is charged with trespass after allegedly jumping a fence into the concert venue.

Mark A. Silvestri, 26, of South Seine Drive, Cheektowaga, is charged with trespass after allegedly jumping a fence into the concert venue.

Michael J. Riley, 47, of Beckett Drive, Brantford, Ontario, Canada, is charged with criminal mischief, 4th, after allegedly punching a car causing damage.

Adam R. Wattles, 19, of Old Lower East Hill, Colden, is charged with false personation after allegedly providing a false age. (Wattles was cited at the Toby Keith concert for alleged underage drinking.)

Colin J. Haines, 17, of Americo Court, Lancaster, is charged with trespass after allegedly attempting to enter the concert venue with a ticket to a show in West Virginia. When he was denied entry, Colin allegedly ran through the gate and entered the venue.

Kelly L. Alcorn, 47, of Tower Hall Terrace, Grand Island, is charged with harassment, 2nd, after allegedly hitting another patron in the concert venue.

Karen M. Walker, 35, of Niagara Falls, is charged with harassment, 2nd, after allegedly striking another patron in the concert venue.

Stephanie A. Fenner, 36, of Lafayette Road, Cortland, is charged with disorderly conduct after allegedly punching and grabbing a Darien Lake security officer.

Daren J. Conklin, 20, of Lafayette Road, Cortland, is charged with harassment, 2nd, and resisting arrest after allegedly being involved in a fight and pushing a deputy while being detained. Conklin then allegedly physically resisted and kicked deputies during the course of the arrest.

The NYS DMV had an enforcement detail at the venue and the following individuals were accused of using a fictitious/fraudulent driver's license.

James A. Carbamone, 20, of Delta Drive, Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada
Rebecca E. Blondin, 20, of South Taylor Road, Charles, Fla.
Kyle R. Henecke, 21, of Loonis Road, Farmington
Morgan J. Engesser, 19, of Higby Road, New Harford

The following indivdiuals received citations for alleged possession or consumption of alcohol while under age 21.

Colin J. Haines, 17, of Americo Court, Lancaster
Adam R. Wattles, 19, of Old Lower East Hill, Colden
Guymichael A. Gornicki, 20, of Lockport Road, Niagara Falls
Anthony R. Dicosmo, 20, of Lockport Road, Sanborn
Megan P. Barney, 20, of Gerald Hunter Road, Madrid
Meghan R. McGee, 20, of Lagrass Street, Waddington
Katie C. Mach, 18, of Banko Drive, Depew
Maxwell I. Crabtree, 19, of South Seine Drive, Cheektowaga
Matthew R. Walsh, 19, of Gabriel Drive, Cheektowaga
Aleigh J. Andrews, 18, of Homestead Drive, Niagara on the Lake, Ontario, Canada
Richard W. Ingoldsby, 20, of Rice Road, Boston
Nicole M. Vinci, 19, of Hogan Road, Webster
Eryn E. McBride, 18, of Houston Road, Webster
Alexandra N. Liberty, 18, of Chigwell Lane, Webster
Alyssa C. Proietti, 20, of Cottage Brook Lane, Webster
Tyler M. Smedley, 19, of Morning Glory Drive, Webster
Kaitlin M. Cunningham, 19, of Cottage Street, Fredonia
Heather N. Tomsick, 20, of Gardner Street, Fredonia
Thomas F. R. McRae, 20, of Parkside Road, Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada
Jacob D. Cardwell, 20, of Woodinton Road, Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada
James A. Carbanone, 20, of Delta Drive, Niagara Falls, Ontario, Canada
Taylor R. O’Leary, 20, of Chesterbrook Lane, Pittsford
(name removed upon request), 20, of Mendon Center Road, Pittsford
Kaitlyn M. Piccarrento, 17, of Temple Road, Henrietta
Samantha N. Jones, 19, of Cameron Hill Road, Rochester
Kathryn E. Pietropalo, 18, of Southery Place, Rochester
Nicole S. Mercendetti, 19, of Elwood Drive, Rochester
Rose R. Emilie, 20, of West Center Street, Medina
Patricia A. Glass, 19, of Chase Street, Medina
Kalie L. Curtain, 18, of South Gravel Road, Medina
(name redacted upon request), 18, of Owls Nest Road, Marion
Melissa A. Cook, 18, of Kemp Drive, Macedon
McKenzie T. Bigley, 20, of North Main Street, Marion
Jordan L. Phillips, 18, of Sunset Drive, Marion
Julia M. Smallman, 20, of Effingham Street, Street, Catherines, Ontario, Canada
Cassandra R. Robinson, 20, of Sunset Drive, Fenwick, Ontario, Canada
Britta M. Adamczyk, 18, of Route 39, Springville
Jochua I. Burau, 19, of Newman Street, Springville
Taylor M. Sikes, 17, of Oak Street, Geneseo
Delilah M. Cipriano, 16, of Upper Mt. Morris Road, Leicester
Bianca R. Weber, 19, of Markie Drive, West Rochester
Veronica L. Maznikovski, 19, of Abbottsford Drive, Gates
Melissa A. Cook, 18, of Kemp Road, Macedon
Darren W. Godfrey, 20, of Witmer Road, North Tonawanda
Ashley M. Drouin, 20, of Peek Road, Hilton
Amanda M. Marlow, 17, of State Street, Caledonia
Corey R. Sherman, 19, of Fraser Drive, Hilton
Austin G. Kelly, 16, of Sunderland Trail, Rochester

August 26, 2012 - 2:49am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, pembroke, corfu.

State Police conducted a DWI checkpoint Saturday evening on Route 5 in the Town of Pembroke.

Six people were arrested:

  • Mark A. Newton, 42, of Batavia, charged with DWI
  • Edith S. Williams, 48, of Buffalo, charged with possession of a controlled substance, 7th
  • Christopher W. Palmer, 40, of Akron, charged with DWAI
  • Armand Cummer, 54, of Amherst, charged with felony DWI
  • Frederick E. Perry, 31, of Corfu, charged with DWI
  • Nathan C. Swimline, 25, of Corfu, charged with DWI
August 24, 2012 - 6:51pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Jacquetta Simmons.

Earl Key (top photo, Jacquetta Simmons leaving court with Ann Nichols following the verdict).

Lawrence Friedman

Asked if his client, Jacquetta B. Simmons, got a fair trial, attorney Earl Key said, "I'm going to appeal that, so we'll see."

Earlier, as reporters walked with him as he left the courthouse, Key declined to say on what basis he might appeal the conviction.

Expanding on the fair trial thought, however, Key said it's possible intense local and regional media coverage made it much harder to ensure Simmons had her case heard before a fair and impartial jury.

"I think the media coverage -- no offense to you guys at all -- definitely hurt her chances of a fair trial," Key said. "As you heard during jury selection, we didn’t have one juror that said -- well, we had a couple, but not very many – who said they had not heard about this case.

"Even the ones who were on the panel had said they had formed an opinion, but they said they could set that aside and be fair and impartial, and the judge accepted their word at that."

Simmons, the 27-year-old Batavia woman convicted today in Genesee County Court of assaulting a 70-year-old Walmart employee, will be sentenced Nov. 15.

District Attorney Lawrence Friedman disagreed with Key's assertion.

"You were there for jury selection," Friedman said. "We went through an unusually large number of people to seat a jury. Obviously there were a lot of people who came through saying they had seen coverage, way more than we’re used to, and they had formed an opinion and, unfortunately, many people said they couldn’t set those opinions aside, and of course they didn’t wind up on the jury."

Key said he was obviously disappointed in the outcome of the case and that he firmly believes the video evidence presented at trial clearly shows a Walmart employee grabbing his client's arm and that she is trying to break free of that grasp when she strikes Grace Suozzi.

"In certain spots, the video is unclear," Key said. "I don't know that they (the jury) saw it the way I saw it."

Asked by a reporter if he thought Sharon Reigle, a Walmart customer service manager, lied on the stand about grabbing Simmons, Key didn't answer the question directly, but said, "She absolutely grabbed her arm, in my opinion."

During the trial there were several profane statements attributed to Simmons that were racially charged.

Some readers of The Batavian have questioned why Simmons wasn't charged with a hate crime.

Friedman said the facts of the case didn't fit the penal code, which requires that race be proven as a motivating factor in the crime.

"Clearly there were comments made, particularly later in the sequence of events, that relate to the race of the victim," Friedman said. "We didn't see necessarily that the crime occured because of the race of the victim."

Simmons was convicted under a relatively new New York statue that makes it a Class D felony for a person 10 years younger than a victim who is 65 or older to assault such a victim.

Originally, Simmons was also charged with the more straightforward assault in the second degree charge, which requires proof of intent to cause serious physical injury.

Prior to the start of the trial, Judge Robert C. Noonan ruled there was insufficient evidence to charge Simmons with intent to cause serious physical injury, so he reduced the charge to a misdemeanor of assault, 3rd.

Without the enhanced assault 2nd charge, the so-called elder-abuse statute, Friedman would have been left with no choice but to prosecute Simmons on the misdemeanor, which carries a maximum sentence of one year in jail.

While such crime enhancements are often controversial among civil libertarians, Friedman said any time there are additional ways to charge a perpetrator with a crime it "helps keep society safer."

"I think it's appropriate for obvious reasons," Friedman said. "You're dealing with more vulnerable victims, either young children or older adults, who are more vulnerable to injuries that can be much more serious. So from my perspective, it's absolutely appropriate."

Simmons turned down a plea bargain several weeks ago that would have capped her sentence at three-and-a-half years in state prison with an available sentence to Judge Noonan of straight probation (no jail time).

Now she's facing a sentence that ranges from probation up to seven years in prison.


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