All schools hold open houses. In Pavilion, the high school hosts the Gopher Gathering, a chance for the school community to come together to enjoy good food, live music, and games, and also learn about academic opportunities available at the school.
Along with a food truck rodeo, there is face painting, a petting zoo, and a dunk tank.
"It's a community thing where people can meet and greet teachers," Principal Charles Martelle said Thursday at the school grounds.
Besides learning about classes they might have overlooked, it's a chance for students and parents to learn about campus activities, including clubs students might join.
"Mostly, it's about coming out and meeting teachers, meeting people at the school, and getting a feel for the place, and having a good time," Martelle said. "Then, if they can learn something about the courses, about the clubs, and some different opportunities, then that's kind of the bonus."
"I always thought the old-timers knew what they were doing, Starr said. "Work hard, keep your nose clean, and you’ll be all right. This is just the way we go. It’s the way we do it. I wouldn’t recommend it to anybody else in the world, but it seems to work for us all right.”
Starr was born in Batavia in 1949, the son of George and Isabelle Rudgers Starr.
The Starr Farm on Starr Road in Pavilion celebrated its 200th anniversary in 2018.
The farm was started by Noah Starr, Randy's great-great-great grandfather, a Dutch immigrant who bought 270 acres in Pavilion from the Holland Land Office in 1818. He built a log cabin on the property when he first settled it. His son started construction on the first part of the current Starr home in 1890.
Randy was born to be a farmer.
After graduating from Pavilion High School, as did his wife, Cindy, he attended Alfred College in order to earn a degree in agriculture.
"For some foolish reason, I wanted to be a farmer all my life, and now here I am." Starr said in 2011. "I’m 61 years old. Was that the right move or not? Who knows?"
At the time of the article in 2011, Starr farmed 125 acres, growing wheat, barley, hay, oats and black beans. He also raised about 80 head of cattle.
Starr said he found the older equipment less of a hassle than a lot of modern equipment farmers use.
"My tractor breaks down, and their tractor breaks down; theirs is maybe a $50,000 fix, and mine is a piece of baling wire and something I can keep it going with."
He is survived by his wife of 50 years, Cindy Wellman Starr; his children, Christopher Starr and Sarah (Timothy) Kingdon; grandchildren, Evan and Collin Kingdon; sisters-in-law, Debbie Starr, Ann (Duane) Stehlar; special friends, Judd (Janet) Ewell, along with many nieces, nephews and dear friends.
Elmira College recently announced this year's recipients of its annual Key Award. This year's award was given to 783 students in 16 states. A tradition that goes back to 1935, the Key Award is presented to outstanding students in their junior year of high school or preparatory school.
This year's recipients included:
Bethany Gracie of Bergen
Brennan Royce of Pavilion
Isabella Walsh of Batavia
Loretta Sorochty of Batavia
Kaidance Kimble of Byron
Riannon Newbould of Oakfield
Austin Pangrazio of Oakfield
Ava Chatt of Oakfield
Corina Dunn of Le Roy
Ella Radley of Batavia
"This award is given to students with the potential to excel academically, serve as leaders, and go on to enjoy success in life," said Charles Lindsay, president of Elmira College. "We hope they will choose to make Elmira College their place."
Anthony Lawrence Corsaro, 33, of Park Hill Drive, Dansville, is charged with resisting arrest, obstructing governmental administration 2nd, driving while impaired by drugs, following too close, and moving from lane unsafely. Corsaro was arrested by Deputy Zachary Hoy on Aug. 30 in connection with a traffic complaint reported at 6:50 p.m. on June 29 on Route 63 in Pavilion. Corsaro was issued traffic tickets and released.
Danny D. Williams, Sr., 34, of Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt 1st. Williams was arrested on Aug. 24 after an investigation into a disturbance on Harvester Avenue on Aug. 21, where he allegedly violated an order of protection. Williams was arraigned in City Court and held without bail.
Bradley R. Jordan, 30, of Batavia, was arrested on a warrant issued by City Court. Jordan was initially arrested on Jan. 20 after a disturbance. He was charged with aggravated family offense, endangering the welfare of a child, and criminal mischief 4th. A warrant was issued on Feb. 4 after he allegedly failed to appear in court. He was arrested on Aug. 28. He was additionally charged with bail jumping 2nd. Jordan was arraigned and remanded to the Genesee County Jail.
Bleyke Z. Culver, 27, of Batavia, is charged with aggravated family offense and criminal contempt 2nd. The arrest on Aug. 25 is the result of an investigation into an incident where Culver was found inside a residence on Walnut Street in violation of an order of protection. Culver was arraigned and remanded to the Genesee County Jail on $200 cash bail, $1,500 bond, or $1,500 partially secured bond.
Victoria L. Jacques, 53, of Batavia, is charged with criminal obstruction of breathing and harassment 2nd. Jacques was arrested on Aug. 27 following an investigation into a disturbance where Jacques allegedly struck another person and grabbed the person by the neck. She was arraigned and released under the supervision of Genesee Justice.
Justin M. Witherspoon, 37, of Batavia, is charged with criminal mischief 4th. It’s alleged that Witherspoon damaged property on Aug. 27 during a dispute with a neighbor. Witherspoon was issued an appearance ticket.
Hailee N. Callicutt, 22, of Albion, was arrested on Aug. 29 on a warrant. Callicutt was initially arrested on Jan. 1, 2022, on charges of obstructing governmental administration and resisting arrest, as well as numerous traffic violations. The warrant was issued on Sept. 20 after Callicutt allegedly failed to appear in court. She was arraigned and released.
Patrick Dale Blackwell, 68, of Rochester, is charged with DWI, aggravated unlicensed operation 3rd, and dazzling headlights. Blackwell was stopped at 12:02 a.m. on Aug. 31, on Park Road, Batavia, by Deputy Jeremiah Gechell.
Cynthia Marie Gosler, 38, of Wakefield Avenue, Buffalo, and Rashawn Lamont Gosier, 44, of Holland Avenue, Batavia, are charged with petit larceny and conspiracy 6th. Gosler and Gosier are accused of stealing merchandise from Target in Batavia on Aug. 25 at 11:06 a.m. Gosler was held pending arraignment. Gosier was held pending arraignment on an NYS Parole warrant.
Nicholas Joseph Breau, 31, of Batavia Oakfield Townline Road, Batavia, is charged with harassment 2nd. Breau allegedly through an item at another person during a disturbance reported at 12:20 p.m. on Aug. 31 at a location on Batavia Oakfield Townline Road, Batavia.
Amy Meredith Gambino, 32, of French Road, Cheektowaga, is charged with criminal contempt 1st, criminal contempt 2nd, endangering the welfare of a child, and harassment 2nd. Gambino is accused of striking two children under the age of 17 and an adult, causing that person alarm during a disturbance in the Town of Darien at 3 p.m. on Aug. 28.
Alana M. Diefendorf, 26, of Bergen, is charged with obstruction of governmental administration 2nd and endangering the welfare of a child. Diefendorf was arrested by State Police in connection with an incident reported in the Town of Bergen at 8:49 p.m. on Sept. 5. The State Police did not release a summary of what led to the charges. Diefendorf was issued an appearance ticket.
Jerome E. Ware, 59, of New Rochelle, is charged with two counts of identity theft 1st and grand larceny third. Joel A. Rojas Perallon, 20, and Raul DeLeon DeLeon, 30, both of New York City, were charged with identity theft 1st, grand larceny 3rd, and scheme to defraud 1st. Ware's arrest came after a report on April 8, 2022, in Wyoming County, of a person misrepresenting himself as a Verizon Wireless employee. The person obtained account and credit card info and subsequently made purchases of four iPhone 13 Pro Max smartphones and had them delivered to an address in Mount Vernon. The total value of the phones was $5,599.96.
Ware was arrested on Sept. 26, 2022. Ware's release status was not provided. Following Ware's arrest, the Genesee County Sheriff's Office contacted Wyoming County concerning a similar case. Ware was identified as a suspect in the Genesee County case, and Perallon and DeLeon were also identified as suspects, following months of an ongoing joint investigation. DeLeon was also identified as a suspect, arrested in June, in an armed robbery of a delivery driver in Illinois. Warrants were issued for the arrests of Perallon and DeLeon. Perallon was arrested at his home in New York City on Aug. 10. DeLeon turned himself in to Wyoming County deputies on Aug. 23.
Both were arraigned and released in accordance with New York bail laws. Assisting with the investigation were NYPD, Homeland Security, and FedEx security.
Noemi Morales, 23, of Briant Avenue, Syracuse, is charged with grand larceny 3rd and conspiracy 5th. Morales is accused of stealing $8,000 in high-end fragrances from Ulta on Veterans Memorial Drive at 6:20 on April 4. She was arrested on Aug. 22 by Investigator Ryan DeLong.
Jamie Aaron Dutton, 31, of East Main Street, Batavia, is charged with tampering with physical evidence, criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th, and obstructing governmental administration 2nd. Dutton was arrested at 8:05 p.m. on Aug. 25 on Dellinger Avenue, Batavia, in a joint enforcement action by Batavia PD's Net Enforcement Team and the Sheriff's Office on a warrant issued by NYS Parole. It is alleged that Dutton fled from police on a bicycle and hid under the back deck of a residence. He allegedly attempted to discard narcotics in an attempt to conceal his possession of the drugs. Dutton was issued an appearance ticket and released.
Heather N. Holbrook, 38, of Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance 3rd and criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th. Holbrook was allegedly found in possession of a small amount of crack cocaine on July 18 at an undisclosed location in Batavia. When Officers located and arrested her on Aug. 16, she was allegedly found in possession of a large quantity of crack cocaine. She was arraigned in City Court and remanded to the Genesee County Jail on $10,000 cash bail, $20,000 bond, and $50,000 partially secured bond.
Austin RJ O’Connell, 19, of Batavia, is charged with petit larceny, criminal trespass 2nd, and criminal mischief 4th. O’Connell was arrested on Aug. 21 following an investigation into a burglary that occurred on Feb. 23. It’s alleged that O’Connell disabled a security camera, entered an apartment on Bank Street and stole property. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Adrienne S. Bechtold, 27, and Ronald J. Murray. 28, both of Batavia, are charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th and criminal use of drug paraphernalia 2nd. Bechtold and Murray were arrested after Genesee County Probation located drugs and drug paraphernalia during a home visit. Batavia Police Officers were then called to assist probation and process the arrests. Bechtold and Murray were each issued appearance tickets.
Terrance H. Riley, 35, of Batavia, was arrested on a warrant issued by City Court. Riley was initially arrested on Oct. 19, 2014, on a charge of harassment 2nd and resisting arrest. Riley allegedly failed to appear in court, and a warrant was issued. He was arraigned in City Court and released on his own recognizance.
Sean M. Conway, 46, of Pembroke, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon 3rd and uninspected motor vehicle. Conway was arrested on Aug. 9 following a traffic stop by a Batavia patrol officer on Washington Avenue. He was allegedly found in possession of an expandable baton. He was arraigned and released.
Brian M. Raphael, 35, of Batavia, is charged with trespassing. Raphael was located inside Aldi on East Main Street on Aug. 16 after previously being barred from the store due to prior alleged shoplifting incidents. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Crystal M. Bouter, 34, of Batavia, was arrested on an arrest warrant issued by City Court. Bouter was initially arrested on July 6 and charged with criminal mischief 4th after allegedly damaging another person’s cellphone. She was issued an appearance ticket. A warrant was issued after she failed to appear in court. Bouter was located on Aug. 16 while officers were investigating a separate incident. Bouter was arraigned and released.
Kyle J. Stack, no age provided, no residence provided, is charged with criminal trespass 3rd and failure to keep right (bicycle). Stack was arrested on Aug. 16 after officers attempted to stop him for riding a bicycle southbound in the northbound lane on South Spruce Street in Batavia. Stack allegedly fled on foot but was located a short distance away in a backyard. He was issued appearance tickets.
Ashton L. Mohney, 33, of Batavia, is charged with assault 3rd and criminal obstruction of breathing. Officers were called to an address on Ross Street, Batavia, for the report of a physical disturbance. It's alleged that Mohney grabbed the victim by the neck and punched her in the head. He was arraigned in City Court and released.
Ricky L. Miller, 41, of Batavia, was arrested on a warrant issued by City Court. Miller was initially arrested on May 24 and charged with petit larceny for allegedly stealing merchandise from Tops. He was issued an appearance ticket. A warrant was issued after he failed to appear in court. Miller was arraigned on the warrant in City Court and released.
Frank R. Cratsenberg, 63, no residence provided, was arrested on Aug. 16 on a warrant issued by City Court. Cratsenberg was arrested on June 6 for an alleged theft from Kwik Fill on Jackson Street, Batavia. He was issued an appearance ticket. A warrant was issued on July 18 after he failed to appear in court. Cratsenberg was arraigned on the warrant in City Court and released.
Ryan M. Arner, 37, of Batavia, is charged with harassment 2nd. Arner was charged after an investigation into a fight that occurred at an address on State Street on Aug. 15. It's alleged that Arner pushed and headbutted another person. Arner was issued an appearance ticket.
Aaron R. Hatfield, 38, of Lockport, is charged with petit larceny and criminal possession of a controlled substance. Hatfield is accused of stealing merchandise from Tops on Aug. 14. During his arrest, Hatfield was allegedly found in possession of a controlled substance. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Myron D. Dupler, 76, of Batavia, is charged with public lewdness. It’s alleged that Dupler exposed himself on Aug. 14 while in the area of Austin Park. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Kelli E. Wallace, 60, of Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. It's alleged that on Aug. 13 Wallace stole merchandise from Tops. She was issued an appearance ticket.
James L. Brown, 40, of Albion, is charged with petit larceny. Brown was charged after allegedly stealing merchandise on Aug. 11 from 7-Eleven in Batavia. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Paul Lee, 51, of Rochester, is charged with criminal trespass 3rd. Lee was arrested after he was allegedly found sleeping on Aug. 8 in a vacant house on Ellicott Street, Batavia. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Joanna F. Larnder, 30, of Batavia, was arrested on a bench warrant issued by City Court. Larnder was initially charged with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle 3rd on March 23 after a traffic stop on Margaret Place, Batavia. She allegedly failed to appear in court and a warrant was issued on May 18. Larnder was arraigned and ordered to reappear at a later date.
Joshua J. Brower, 39, of Medina, is charged with DWI. Brower was arrested after a traffic stop on West Main Street on Aug. 12. He was issued traffic tickets.
Fawn M. Mobley, 51, of Oakfield, is charged with DWI. Mobley was arrested on Aug. 12 after officers located a vehicle driving on West Main Street, Batavia, with a flat tire. She was issued traffic tickets.
Andrew T. Williams, 20, of Jamestown, was arrested on a warrant issued by City Court. Williams was initially charged on April 22 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle 3rd and operating with a suspended registration after a traffic stop on Cedar Street, Batavia. A warrant was issued after he allegedly failed to appear in court. Williams was arraigned in City Court and released.
Ashton L. Mohney, 33, of Batavia, is charged with burglary 2nd, criminal Contempt 1st, and criminal mischief 3rd. Mohney was arrested after an investigation into a disturbance on Ross Street on Aug. 19 where he allegedly damaged property and violated an order of protection. Mohney was arraigned and remanded to the Genesee County Jail on $1,000 cash bail, $2,000 bond, and $4,000 partially secured bond.
Brian E. Daggar, 37, of Elba, was arrested on a warrant on Aug. 22. Daggar was initially charged with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle 3rd. He was reportedly involved in a traffic accident in January 2023 in Batavia. The warrant was issued after he allegedly failed to appear in court. Daggar was arraigned and released and is due back in court at a later date.
Hunter M. Passage, 23, of Batavia, is charged with criminal trespass 2nd. It’s alleged that Passage entered a home on Washington Avenue on Aug. 22 without permission after offering to clean the house for the homeowner. Passage was issued an appearance ticket.
Lakeisha A. Gibson, 37, of Batavia, was arrested on a warrant on Aug. 19. Gibson was initially arrested on May 15. She was accused of failing to appear to testify at Grand Jury after being served a subpoena. She was issued an appearance ticket. Gibson failed to appear in court, and a warrant was issued on July 19. She was arraigned and ordered to reappear at a later date.
Adam Troy Shipwash, 43, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with disobeying a mandate. The Sheriff's Office provided no explanation of the charge. Shipwarsh was arrested in connection with an incident reported noon on Aug. 10 in the Town of Byron. He was jailed pending arraignment.
Jeremy John Trzecienski, 46, of Hillside Drive, Pavilion, is charged with harassment 2nd and trespass. Trzecienski is accused of entering another person's property on South Lake Road, Pavilion, at about 7 p.m. on Aug. 23, and remaining there unlawfully while fighting with another person. He was arraigned and ordered to return to court at a later date.
Rachael Marie Brown, 45, of Bethany Center Road, Bethany, is charged with driving while impaired by drugs and following too close. Brown was reportedly involved in a traffic accident at 4:36 p.m. on June 21 on Telephone Road in Pavilion. Following an investigation by Deputy Zachary Hoy, Brown was arrested on Aug. 24 and issued traffic tickets.
Michael Ford Pfenninger, 21, of Genesee Street, Alden, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, and moving from lane unsafely. Pfenninger was arrested on Aug. 23 by Deputy Ryan Mullen in connection with an incident reported at 3:57 a.m. on July 17 on Route 20 in Darien. No details on the incident were released by the Sheriff's Office. Information was not released on whether he was arraigned or issued appearance tickets. He is scheduled to appear in court on Sept. 12.
Koree Rose Stephenson, no age provided, no street address provided, of Rochester, is charged with introducing prison contraband and criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th. Stephenson was allegedly found in possession of a controlled substance while being booked into the jail at 1:50 a.m. on Aug. 27. She was held pending arraignment.
William James Flack, 50, of Sandpit Road, Alexander, is charged with harassment 2nd and criminal contempt 1st. Flack allegedly violated a "refrain from" order of protection by striking another person at 2:05 a.m. on Aug.27 at a location on Sandpit Road, Alexander. He was scheduled to appear in court of arraignment later on the day of his arrest.
Markeith Deandre Lenoir, 33, of Ruleville, Miss., is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .18 or greater, and insufficient tailamps. Lenoir was stopped at 1:35 a.m. on Aug. 29, on West Main Street, Batavia, by Deputy Jeremiah Gechell. He was released on traffic tickets.
Matthew J. Zon, 42, of Warsaw, is charged with aggravated criminal contempt and aggravated family offense. Zon was arrested in the Town of Byron by State Police in connection an incident reported at 3:14 p.m. on Aug 29. He was ordered held in jail. No further information was released.
David C. Stephens, 58, of Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt 1st. Stephens was arrested by State Police in connection with an incident reported in Stafford at 5:42 p.m. on Aug. 23.
Amanda N. Holbrook, 36, of Bergen, is charged with DWI. Holbrook was stopped by State Police in the Town of Bergen at 8:30 p.m. on Aug. 23 and released on an appearance ticket.
Like every other school district in the nation, Pavilion Central School District teachers and administrators are frustrated by the distractions and problems created by students with mobile communication devices, particularly mobile phones.
"When you ask teachers, what's the one thing we could do to get kids more focused in school and in the classroom, it would probably be the removal of cell phones," said Charles Martelle, Pavilion's high school principal. "That doesn't mean we can come up with a way to do it that doesn't cause more distractions."
It's a problem even in elementary school, said principal Tom Wilson, and Carin Wade, a ninth-grade language teacher, chimed in with, "It's awful."
She added, "They can put it in their pockets and you don't even see it. They can text without looking at their phones. I mean, you've got 25 kids in a classroom and you can't -- it's terrible."
During the discussion of outright bans, Wade said it's been tried at Pavilion, and parents complained.
Parents, one administrator said, are part of the problem.
"I understand the safety side of it, but at the end of the day, parents shouldn't be texting their kids during class," he said.
"And they know they are," Wade said. "They know their kids are in class, and the kids will be like, 'But it's my mom,' and I'm like, 'OK, but you're in class. I don't understand.'"
The policy for 2023-24 will be the same as last academic year, which uses a color-coded system to let students know where and when they can touch their phones.
In the green zones -- hallways and the cafeteria, they get close to unlimited access to their phones (they're not supposed to take pictures or make audio or video clips). In gold zones, such as most classrooms, they can only access a phone with teacher permission. And in red zones, phones cannot be touched or displayed at all. This includes bathrooms, locker rooms, and the auditorium.
If a student is caught in violation of the policy, a staff member can collect the phone and leave it in the main office, where a parent or guardian must pick it up.
The discussion at Monday's meeting indicated even this policy leaves much to be desired when it comes to limiting distractions caused by electronic devices.
Schools have tried outright bans, but Martelle said there's no evidence these bans achieve favorable outcomes. Some schools have tried lockable pouches that students must store the device during the school day, getting the pouch unlocked by a staff member at the end of the day, but some school districts, Martelle said, found that students use "burner phones," phones they don't really use, to dump in the pouches.
"If there's a plan that actually worked and serves our interests that was more strict, we would use it," Martelle said. "I think a lot of schools are (implementing more strict policies), so we'll be able to look at articles and literature and studies. Right now, it's really up in the air. The studies as to whether or not schools that have done this versus those that haven't, the studies are really kind of inconclusive. We're looking at different things as to whether it actually improves anything in schools or not or whether it's effective."
He said administrators are open-minded about finding a better way of dealing with the problem.
"It's a very difficult problem right now," he said.
Rex Eighmey, the director of facilities for the Pavilion Central School District, gave the Board of Education on Monday a complete rundown of all the work his staff is performing during the summer months.
It's more than just keeping the lawns mowed and the floors buffed -- which board members praised as always extra shiny -- it's repairs and upgrades, among other items.
A few of the items he mentioned:
Clean all furniture, windows, floors, ceilings;
Perform maintenance on the HVAC system;
Unpack and assemble new furniture that comes in and place in the appropriate rooms;
Retrofit some of the high-pressure sodium lights outside with LEDs;
Clean and repair concession stands at sports fields;
Maintain and repair sports fields;
Repair baseball and softball dugouts;
Replace some whiteboards and blackboards in classrooms; and,
Replace condensation pumps in the cafeteria.
Among several other items that have kept work crews busy all summer.
The Pavilion Central School District Board of Education members warmly welcomed Deputy Trevor Sherwood as the district's new School Resource Officer at their Monday evening meeting.
Sherwood's new position begins with the start of the school year, and he said he's excited to get going.
He said the job is a chance to have a positive impact on the lives of young people.
"I grew up here -- not necessarily in Pavilion, but in Batavia, just down the road," Sherwood told The Batavian after the meeting. "The biggest thing is I have a younger brother who is still in high school. I think I can be a positive role model."
A former star athlete in basketball and baseball at Batavia High School, Sherwood said one of the aspects of the job he's looking forward to is supporting the Golden Gophers in their athletic programs. He's on board, he said, with Gopher Pride.
"I've always tried to be a positive role model, especially in sports," Sherwood said. "I've been out of touch with (sports) for years. I've coached previously, junior league baseball and stuff like that years ago, and I thought one of the biggest things is that it would be cool to be around sports again."
Joel D. Prouty, 37, of Batavia, is charged with strangulation 2nd and assault 3rd. It’s alleged that Prouty struck the victim in the face and strangled her during a disturbance on an undisclosed date at an undisclosed location in the City of Batavia. When Police arrived on scene, Prouty allegedly jumped out of a second-story window and fled on foot. Officers were unable to locate Prouty that day. On Aug. 4, patrols were called back to the same address for another disturbance between Prouty and the same victim. When officers attempted to take him into custody, Prouty reportedly fought with them. He was additionally charged with resisting arrest and obstructing governmental administration 2nd. He was arraigned in City Court and held without bail.
Owen Charles Scouten, 22, of Batavia (no street address disclosed), is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, speed not reasonable and prudent, moving from lane unsafely, and drinking alcohol in a motor vehicle. Scouten was reportedly involved in an accident at 1:16 a.m. on Aug. 20, on Lewiston Road, Batavia. Two people were injured in the accident and required transport to a hospital for treatment. Following an investigation, Scouten was arrested by Deputy Carlos Ortiz Speed. Additional charges are pending. Scouten was released on an appearance ticket.
Owen Charles Scouten, 22, of Church Street, Elba, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, speeding and moving from lane unsafely. Scouten was stopped at 7:38 p.m. on Aug. 14 on Route 20 in Alexander by Deputy Alexander Hadsall. He was released on an appearance ticket.
Richard A Demmer, 30, of Batavia, was arrested on a bench warrant issued by City Court. Demmer was initially arrested on May 29, after he allegedly attempted to rob the 7-Eleven, on East Main Street A warrant was issued on July 12 after Demmer allegedly failed to appear for a court appearance. He was arrested on that warrant on July 13. Another warrant was issued on July 27 after he again allegedly failed to appear in court. Demmer was located by Batavia Police on Aug. 3 and arrested. He was arraigned in City Court and remanded to the Genesee County Jail on $10,000 cash bail, $20,000 bond, or $40,000 partially secured bond.
Crystal A. Mounts, 46, of Batavia, was arrested on a bench warrant issued by City Court. Mounts was initially arrested on April 9, 2022 after allegedly stealing property from a local church. A warrant was issued on April 29, 2022 after she allegedly failed to appear in court. She was arrested on that warrant on May 14, 2022. Another warrant was issued on Sept. 19 after she again failed to appear in court. She was arrested on that warrant on July 29. She was arraigned and released.
Lance D. Beals, 53, of Batavia, is charged with criminal mischief 4th and criminal tampering 3rd. Beals was arrested after an investigation into an incident on East Main Street where he allegedly damaged to an apartment building. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Kavyia A. Spencer, 24, of Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Spencer was arrested after an investigation into an employee theft from Kwik Fill on Jackson Street, Batavia. It’s alleged that she stole merchandise from the store on two separate occasions. She was issued an appearance ticket.
Patricia M. Anderson, 38, of Batavia, was arrested on on Aug. 9 on an arrest warrant issued by City Court. Anderson was initially arrested on April 9 after allegedly stealing merchandise from 7-Eleven on East Main Street in Batavia. A warrant was issued after Anderson allegedly failed to appear in court. Anderson was arraigned in City Court and released on her own recognizance.
Edmund J. Sobresky, 54, of Batavia, is charged with DWAI Drugs. Sobresky’s arrest is the result of a traffic stop on April 11. He was charged on Aug. 8 following an investigation. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Patricia A. McCarthy, 29, of Batavia, is charged with harassment 2nd and public lewdness. McCarthy was arrested after patrols responded to Dellinger Avenue, Batavia, on Aug. 6 for a report of two people fighting. It’s alleged that McCarthy engaged in a fight with another person. During the fight, McCarthy became disrobed. She was issued an appearance ticket.
Jason Howard Heerdt, 27, of Hilltop Drive Elma, Ryan Thomas Budziszewski, 32, of Northseine Drive, Cheektowaga, and Carlie Marie Budziszewski, 25, of Northseine Drive, Cheektowaga, are charged with unauthorized use of a vehicle. Heerdt is accused of taking a golf cart at Darien Lake Theme Park without permission on Aug. 6 at 9:25 p.m.. They were issued appearance tickets.
Joseph David Johnson, 53, of State Street, Mumford, is charged with robbery 3rd and harassment 2nd. Johnson is accused of using force to steal property from an elderly victim while inside Batavia Downs Casino at 1:26 on Aug. 10. He was held pending arraignment.
Christopher James Parker, 34, of Batavia Elba Townline Road, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt 2nd. Parker is accused of violating an order of protection at 10:37 a.m. on Aug. 11. He was held pending arraignment.
Steven Albert Barraco, 53, of Edgewood Drive, Batavia, is charged with harassment 2nd. Barraco is accused of shoving another person by the throat during an altercation on Aug. 10 at 5:31 p.m. at a location on Edgewood Drive. He was held pending arraignment.
Brian Michael Tracy, 35, of Horseshoe Lake Road, Stafford, is charged with two counts of endangering the welfare of a child, criminal contempt 2nd, criminal mischief 4th, and harassment 2nd. Tracy is accused of getting out of a car and striking another person in front of two children on Aug. 11 at 4:10 p.m. at a location on Horseshoe Lake Road. He was processed at the Genesee County Jail and held pending arraignment.
Jason Michael Babbitt, 49, of Perry Road, Pavilion, is charged with 46 counts of aggravated harassment 2nd. Babbitt is accused of calling the Emergency Dispatch Center 46 times, including calls after he was instructed to stop. According to the Sheriff's Office, his calls were not placed to request the services of police, fire, or EMS. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Jose Efrain Velz-Torres, 42, of Sobieski Street, Rochester, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance 7th, speeding, aggravated unlicensed operation, operating a vehicle with improper plates, and driving without insurance. Velz-Torres was stopped at 1:19 a.m. on Aug. 14 on Clinton Street Road, Bergen, by Deputy Ryan Mullen. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Mark Louis Frongetta, 53, of Park Road, Batavia, is charged with disorderly conduct. At 6:14 p.m. on Aug. 14, Deputies responded to the Best Western Inn Suites on Park Road after receiving a report of a disturbance. Frongetta is accused of standing in the lobby yelling obscenities and of throwing the hotel's phone. Frongetta was held pending arraignment.
Dennis Edward Biggins, 48, of Franklin Street, Batavia, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .18 or greater, and driving too slow (impeding traffic). Biggins was stopped at 4:15 p.m. on Aug. 14 on Route 237 in Stafford by Deputy Nicholas Chamoun. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Lorriance Marie Nelson, 61, of Hillcrest Street, Newfane, is charged with driving while impaired by drugs, speed not reasonable and prudent, and moving from lane unsafely. Nelson was reportedly involved in an accident at 12:51 a.m. on May 25 on Ellicott Street. She was arrested on Aug. 18 following an investigation by Deputy Mason Schultz. She was issued an appearance ticket.
Joseph Albert Boisclair, 58, of Knowlesville Road, Oakfield, is charged with DWI, speeding, driving left of pavement markings, and failure to keep right. Boisclair was stopped at 1:35 a.m. on Aug. 19 on Lewiston Road, Batavia by Sgt. Mathew Clor. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Angel Eliseo Colon, 41, of Grant Street, North Tonawanda, is charged with harassment 2nd. Colon is accused of spitting on another person while at the Genesee County Jail at 7:02 p.m. on Aug. 16. He was issued an appearance ticket.
Akeem Rashaad Gibson, 33, of West Main Street Road, Batavia, is charged with reckless endangerment and unlawful fleeing a police officer 3rd. Gibson is accused of fleeing from a deputy in the Town of Byron at 3:31 p.m. on July 30. He was arrested on the charge on Aug. 15. He was held pending arraignment.
Joseph Jerome Kostanciak, 33, of Genesee Street, Pembroke, and Shannon Leah Smith, 46, of Genesee Street, Pembroke, are charged with two counts of endangering the welfare of a child. Kostanciak and Smith are accused of possession of drug paraphernalia at 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 18 at a location on Genesee Street, Pembroke, including an uncapped needle that was accessible to children who are under the age of 17. Both were held pending arraignment.
John Joseph Wojtkowiak, 56, of Attica Road, Attica, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, and drinking in a motor vehicle. Wojtkowiak was reportedly involved in an accident at 6:44 a.m. on Aug. 1 at the Totempole Gas and Smoke Shop on Ledge Road, Basom. He was arrested following an investigation by Deputy Kevin McCarthy. He was released on an appearance ticket.
The tax rate in the Pavilion Central School District for 2023-24 is final, and the numbers are in alignment with budget projects from earlier this year, Donald Childs, school business official, told the Board of Education on Monday.
The board approved the tax warrants for the academic year.
The tax rate in the Town of Pavilion will be $16.68 per $1,000 of assessed value, a decrease from $16.73 this school year.
The rate for Bethany will be $19.06, up from 18.19; for Stafford, $16.34, down from $16.73; and, in Le Roy, $20.93, up from $20.16.
Outside of Genesee County, the towns of Covington, Middlebury, Caledonia, Leicester, and York also all contribute to the total tax levy.
The total tax levy is $5,788,283, which is a $85,396 over 2022-23.
The total assessed value of property in the district is $324,875,934.
The total spending plan for the 2023-24 academic year is $18,869,393, which voters approved in May. The approved budget is 3.18 percent higher than 2022-23, for a total increase in spending of $582,042.
At the time of the budget vote, district finance officers can only estimate the tax rate because town assessments are not always final. Once the total assessed value within the district is known, school districts can finalize the tax rates.
Pavilion Central School District is looking at spending nearly $69,000 on a consultant who would visit district schools and assess their security vulnerabilities.
Most, if not all, of the expense, could be covered by state aid to school districts.
The Board of Education voted on Monday to table the proposal in order to first talk with the consultant, Don Shomette, via Zoom during its Aug. 28 meeting.
A couple of board members called the fee "pricey."
According to Superintendent Mary Kate Hoffman, Shomette has previously worked for Oakfield-Alabama Central School District and Geneseo School District.
"This is something we've talked about for five years, ever since we first started the SRO program, and I think about as I'm reading through (the proposal) it's like it's got to be better than some contractor coming in and saying, 'oh, you should do the windows' or 'you should do this, or you should do that,' you know. I know it's pricey, but for me, I was ok with it," said Board Vice President Jeff Finch.
When Hoffman asked if he would like to have a meeting with Shomette, Finch said yes.
"Because we can ask him straight up, why is this so pricey?" Finch said. "I mean, obviously, he must have had that question before, so let's do that."
Hoffman described Shomette as a school violence prevention expert with 30 years of experience. She said that he would visit the school campuses -- at a price of $29,500 each -- and "really take a look at every lock, every door, the windows, check every entrance of our schools."
He would then produce a report with specific recommendations about how to improve school safety.
The proposal also includes a $9,875 fee for staff development training.
"His ultimate goal as part of this," she said, apparently quoting him, "is to 'keep away fear, anxiety and threat of violence so students and teachers can direct their efforts on classroom success instead of personal safety. By doing so, students, teachers and parents will achieve a richer experience and higher levels of physical growth.'
"Now, that sounds very interesting," Hoffman said. "His message is, 'School safety is more than a locked door, a locked window, a procedure for lockdown. It is the relationships you build between your staff and your students.'"
NOTE: The Batavian promised a follow-up story on the appointment of Deputy Trevor Sherwood to the position of school resource officer in Pavilion. We anticipated receiving a copy of the memorandum of understanding between the school district and the Sheriff's Office, which was approved by the board on Monday, and is public record, but Hoffman declined to provide it today. We also made written and telephone requests for an interview on Tuesday, which we anticipated getting, but we were unable to get that interview with Hoffman. So we have no follow-up story at this time.
Serving as a high school sports coach takes a lot more than understanding where to put the Xs and Os if school districts are to abide by New York State regulations, a Matt Roth, athletic director in Pavilion, laid out for the Pavilion Board of Education on Monday night.
Non-teacher coaches have a multi-year program of classes they need to take and that total cost to the coach can exceed $700.
"This is for any coach who is board-approved," Roth said. "They have to have all of these classes. They can't just show up and help out anymore."
For the non-teacher coach, there are nine steps that must be completed at the time of application. It's about a two-month process to get the initial temporary coaching license, Roth said.
"When I came here two years ago, I kind of went through this with everybody, but I just wanted to give everybody a refresher on it," Roth told the board at the start of his report.
The candidate must submit evidence of an acceptable first aid and CPR course completion along with completion of a child abuse identification worship, a school violence and prevention and intervention worship, and training in dealing with harassment, bullying, cyber-bullying and discrimination in schools. The would-be couch must also submit fingerprints and be cleared through a database check.
Then they are eligible to coach for one or two years on a temporary license. They must pay a $50 fee for each sport they wish to coach.
In years three, four, and five, they must complete a fundamentals of coaching course, along with courses on contusions, protecting students from abuse, and a course on student cardiac arrest.
In the next level, they must complete courses in student mental health and suicide prevention, heat illness prevention, first aid for coaches, and a sport-specific course.
If the non-teacher coach is still going in year six, then the coach needs to apply for a professional coaching license.
At that point, the coach must complete course in bullying and hazing, strength and conditioning, teaching and modeling behavior, engaging effectively with parents, and sportsmanship.
The courses are offered online by the National Federation of High School Sports, and most are free, but some have fees ranging from $25 to $50.
The professional coach must reapply for a license every three years, which involves refresher courses in first aid and CPR, along with a positive evaluation from the athletic director.
"The teacher coaching requirements, they are a little bit easier because they've already taken some of the coursework," Roth said. "A teacher only needs to have first aid and CPR to get started in their first three years, and then they are supposed to complete the same courses that nonteacher coaches have at two years and complete levels one, two and three within five years of starting."
Deputy Trevor Sherwood, a Batavia High School graduate who was a star athlete in baseball and basketball, was approved by the Pavilion Board of Education on Monday night as the school district's new resource officer.
The board voted unanimously to approve a new memorandum of understanding with the Genesee County Sheriff's Office.
Superintendent Mary Kate Hoffman told the board that a committee interviewed four deputies for the position and recommended Sherwood.
Sherwood joined the Sheriff's Office on road patrol in early 2021.
The SRO position became vacant after Deputy Jeremy McClellan was reassigned to road patrol at the end of the 2022-23 academic year at the apparent request of the school district, which was a move several parents protested.
The Batavian will have a more complete story on Tuesday.
205 students from Genesee Community College named to President's List. Students honored on the President's List have maintained full-time enrollment and earned a quality point index of 3.75 (roughly equivalent to an A) or better.
243 students from Genesee Community College named to Provost's List. Students honored on the Provost's List have maintained part-time enrollment and earned a quality point index of 3.75 (roughly equivalent to an A) or better.