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June 7, 2020 - 2:32pm
posted by Billie Owens in batavia, crime, news, scanner.

A physical fight among about a dozen people in the 100 to 200 block of Ross Street in the city is reported. Police are responding.

UPDATE 2:33 p.m.: Police are on scene.

UPDATE 3:02 p.m.: Police report the situation is under control.

June 4, 2020 - 11:10pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in news, batavia, crime.

Police were dispatched to Ellsworth Avenue in the City of Batavia for the report of a large fight.

The initial dispatched included a report of "shots fire" but a responding police officer, once on scene, said, "no firearms involved."

Ellsworth is between Ross and Summit streets.

June 4, 2020 - 1:24pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, Stafford, batavia, byron.

Taylor K. Laird, 27, of Mechanic Street, Byron, is charged with: driving while intoxicated; aggravated DWI -- child in vehicle; aggravated unlicensed operation. Laird was arrested at 10:57 a.m. on May 28 on Pearl Street in Batavia following a "check the welfare call" at a business on West Main Street. Batavia Police Officer Sean Wilson handled the case, assisted by Officer Connor Borchert and the NYS Police.

Salvatore P. Scarlata, 36, of East Main Street Road, Stafford, is charged with criminal contempt. Scarlata was arrested at 6:52 p.m. on June 3 on East Main Street Road in Stafford after he was allegedly found in the presence of a person with an order of protection against him out of Town of Sweden Court. Scarlata was fingerprinted, photographed and issued an appearance ticket for Aug. 6 in Town of Stafford Court. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Christopher Erion, assisted by Deputy Andrew Mullen.

Brittany L. Bolton, 20, of East Main Street Road, Stafford, is charged with criminal contempt. Bolton was arrested at 6:52 p.m. on June 3 on East Main Street Road in Stafford after allegedly being found in the presence of a person with an order of protection from Town of Greece Court. She was fingerprinted, photographed and issued an appearance ticket for Aug. 4 in Town of Stafford Court. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Christopher Erion, assisted by Deputy Andrew Mullen.

Ashley K. Marshall, 28, of Batavia (no address provided), was arrested and issued appearance tickets for Town of Warsaw Court, where she is due to appear at a later date. At 4:20 p.m. on May 31, Wyoming County Sheriff's deputies were patrolling northbound Route 19 in the Town of Warsaw when they stopped Marshall near Mungers Mill Road for having a suspended registration. She was also ticketed for having an uninspected motor vehicle, and operating a motor vehicle which had broken glass. The deputy handling the case was Austin Harding.

June 3, 2020 - 7:08pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy, news, notify, joshua blessed.
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             Joshua Blessed

Story by Pete DeLea, of the Daily News-Record of Harrisonburg, Va. Republished with permission.

A Virginia man shot and killed by New York police last week became radicalized over the years, had a deep hatred for government and police, and was likely planning a large-scale attack, according to several law enforcement sources.

Over the course of three days last week, police say, FBI agents found a stockpile of firearms and pipe bombs in Joshua Blessed’s car and at his home in Rockingham County.

Sources say police and federal agents were aware of the 58-year-old, also known as Sergei Jourev. The FBI and Virginia State Police sent out bulletins to local law enforcement about Blessed’s extreme views and potential danger to police.

Rockingham County Sheriff Bryan Hutcheson said deputies had minimal dealings with Blessed in the past, but nothing that was criminal. He said he’s thankful no one was injured in New York or locally.

“We found out a whole lot more about him. You’re talking about a true extremist,” Hutcheson said. “He was a dangerous individual. You’re talking about someone that was serious about committing violence … some kind of terrorism.”

Calls to the FBI were not returned.

The investigation into Blessed began shortly after 8:30 p.m. on May 27, when a Le Roy police officer attempted a traffic stop on Blessed’s tractor-trailer on Route 5 in the Village of Le Roy.

Blessed took off while an officer was on the truck’s side rails. A pursuit ensued and it eventually included multiple police agencies.

He continued into Livingston County. Blessed opened fire, shooting four police vehicles. Police say one vehicle alone received 10 shots.

Police returned fire, striking him multiple times. Blessed died at the scene.

Officers say Blessed worked for Harrisonburg-based trucking company Yurman Express and was headed to New York to pick up dairy products.

During a press conference on May 28, Livingston County Sheriff Thomas J. Dougherty said no police officers or civilians were injured.

“I would call it a miracle. I have no clue how nobody was hurt. He fired a lot of shots, and we fired a lot of shots,” he said, adding that one bullet entered a police car and struck the driver’s side headrest. “If he wasn’t ducking, it would have been right to his head.”

Following the shootout, Dougherty said, investigators began to focus on figuring out why Blessed did what he did.

Joined by the FBI, multiple law enforcement agencies turned their attention to Blessed's social media posts, which they say included troubling statements regarding his religious and anti-police views.

A YouTube video he posted showed snipers on roofs during a Second Amendment rally in Richmond on Jan. 20.

Under the video, Blessed posts: “The Civil War is coming to America and then Russian invasion on the east and Chinese on the west.”

The FBI then headed to the Shenandoah Valley, where they searched multiple properties.

They searched his former Augusta County home on Fadley Road in Weyers Cave, but nothing was found. Although he owns the property, police say, he didn’t live there.

Police say he rented a home in Keezletown.

During a search at that home, law enforcement said, they found more than a dozen explosive devices capable of being used in a large-scale attack.

The Virginia State Police blew up the devices at a remote farm in the county.

ADDITIONAL INFO: Le Roy Chief Chris Hayward told The Batavian the Le Roy patrol vehicle rammed and shot in the incident sustained $15,000 in damage.

Previously:

June 2, 2020 - 6:01pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, notify, batavia, Darien.

Luis A. Ramos-Mercado (inset photo left), 35, of Ellicott Avenue, Batavia, is charged with: attempted burglary in the first degree -- use or threatened use of a dangerous instrument; criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree -- previous conviction; menacing in the second degree -- with a weapon. Ramos-Mercado was arrested on a Batavia City Court warrant for an incident that occurred at 2:30 a.m. on Jan. 30 on East Main Street in Batavia. He was released under supervision and is due back in city court on July 9. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Austin Hedges, assisted by Officer Wesley Rissinger.

Trevawn Oral Wright, 19, of Highland Park, Batavia, is charged with two counts of second-degree harassment -- with physical contact. Wright was arrested after Batavia police responded to Highland Park for a report of a disturbance. After an investigation, it was found that Wright allegedly punched a male in the head and attempted to strike another male with a jug of water. He was issued an appearance ticket to be in Batavia City Court on July 21. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Nicole McGinnis, assisted by Officer Joshua Girvin.

Torre Steven Walls, 28, of Alleghany Road in Darien, is charged with fourth-degree grand larceny. Walls was arrested at 9:45 p.m. on May 29 after an investigation of a domestic incident that occurred on Alleghany Road in Darien. It is alleged that Walls stole his girlfriend's Ruger SR22 pistol following a verbal argument. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Darien Town Court on July 21. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Mathew Clor, assisted by Deputy James Stack.

Rae C. Cook, 31, Liberty Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree criminal contempt. Cook was arrested at 5:43 a.m. on May 30 on Liberty Street following an incident in which she was allegedly found in the presence of a person protected by an order of protection. She was arrested then issued an appearance ticket for July 21 in Batavia City Court. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Cronmiller.

Dalton Joseph Rarick, 30, Whitfield Avenue, Buffalo, is charged with: aggravated driving while intoxicated -- having a BAC of .18 percent or more; DWI; and refusing a preliminary breath test. Rarick was arrested at 10:16 p.m. May 29 on West Main Street in Batavia. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court on July 15. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Samuel Freeman, assisted by Officer Christopher Lindsay.

Alan R. Murray, 74, Spencer Court, Batavia, is charged with operating a vehicle while having a BAC of .08 percent or more, and driving while intoxicated, with a previous conviction within the last 10 years. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Miah Stevens.

Brian Keith Dyer, 53, North Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. Dyer was arrested at 9:50 p.m. on May 23 on Ross Street in Batavia after an investigation into a fight/disturbance there. He is due in Batavia City Court on July 21. Batavia Police Officer Arick Perkins handled the case.

Carrie L. Vargo, 35, of Tonawanda Creek Road, Clarence, is charged with second-degree criminal contempt. Vargo was arrested at 3:23 p.m. on May 14 after allegedly contacting a protected party on Summit Street in Batavia via email. Vargo was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court on July 14. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Alec Roberts.

Nikkia Marie Farias, 22, of Thorpe Street, Batavia, is charged with making unnecessary noise. Farias was arrested at 3:17 a.m. on May 26 following several noise complaints. The defendant was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court on July 14. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Flanagan, assisted by Officer Adam Tucker.

Thomas James Leonard, 36, address unknown, is charged with petit larceny. Police were called to Dollar General on East Main Street in Batavia after it was reported that a male had stolen items from the store and was fleeing. Leonard was arrested and issued an appearance ticket to be in Batavia City Court on July 21. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Nicole McGinnis, assisted by Officer Joshua Girvin.

A minor teenager who lives on Halstead Road in Batavia was arrested for unlawful possession of marijuana at 4:36 a.m. on May 24 on State Street in Batavia after a domestic incident. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Post, assisted by Officer Stephen Quider.

May 30, 2020 - 6:33pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy, le roy pd, news.

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Le Roy PD released these photos of one of the patrol vehicles involved in Wednesday night's chase of Joshua Blessed, the Virginia truck driver who tried to flee law enforcement following a traffic stop for speeding in the village.

Blessed rammed this patrol vehicle, along with other law enforcement vehicles, and fired several shots both during the pursuit and after coming to a stop near Geneseo. Police officers returned fire and Blessed died as an apparent result of bullet wounds.

Previously:

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May 30, 2020 - 6:18pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, notify, Le Roy.

The home of Joshua Blessed, the truck driver who fled from Le Roy Police on Wednesday and eventually died in a shootout near Geneseo, was raided by the FBI according to a Harrisonburg, Va., TV station news report.

Blessed owned a home in the community of Weyers Cave, near Harrisonburg.

A source with the FBI's field office in Richmond, Va., told WHSV that Blessed was the subject of a joint investigation by the FBI and Virginia State Police following the incident in New York. No information was released about what investigators were looking for in Blessed's home or what may have been found.

Blessed, who claimed to speak directly with God, posted anti-police videos on his YouTube channel and on his website claimed to be called by God to start a second civil war.

The News-Leader, a newspaper in Waynesboro, Va., reports that Blessed was accused in 2015 of assaulting a teen relative. He was convicted of assault. Following an appeal, he was ordered to undergo anger management treatment and perform 100 hours of community service. The case was dismissed in 2018.

He has two adult children. In 2005, he and his family moved from California to Virginia.

Previously:

May 30, 2020 - 1:51pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Oakfield.

Heidi M. Connolly, 44, of Hutchins Street, Batavia, is charged with seven counts of offering a false instrument for filing in the first degree, a felony, and one count of third-degree grand larceny, also a felony. Connolly was arrested at about 5 p.m. on May 28, arraigned in Genesee County Court, then released on her own recognizance. It is alleged that between October 2018 and October 2019, Connolly allegedly falsified paperwork at the Genesee County Department of Social Services Building and as a result fraudulently received $3,631 in benefits. She was released on her own recognizance and is due in county court on July 7. The case was investigated by GC DSS Fraud Investigator Robert Riggi and GC Sheriff's Deputy Erik Andre, assisted by Sheriff's Sgt. Michael Lute.

Christopher M. Smith, 26, of Pratt Road, Batavia, and James C. Malone, 23, of South Pearl Street, Oakfield, are charged with unlawful possession of marijuana in the second-degree, a violation. They were allegedly found in possession of marijuana after an investigation by a Batavia Neighborhood Engagement Team (NET) officer and the Genesee County Local Drug Task Force. The May 28 press release from the Genesee County Sheriff's Offices does not say when or where the arrests were made. The defendants were issued appearance tickets and are due in City of Batavia Court on June 23.

May 30, 2020 - 11:41am

From Millie Tomidy-Pepper, executive director, YWCA of Genesee County:

We extend our deepest condolences to the family and friends of George Floyd, and to the larger Minneapolis and St. Paul community. YWCA continues to be outraged by the violence and deaths of people of color in America due to police brutality.

We at YWCA of Genesee County felt outrage following the death of George Floyd, a black man suffocated by a white police officer earlier this week. We send our condolences to the family and friends of George Floyd and also to the families of Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor and to all communities of color.

We are also thinking of our sisters and brothers at YWCA Minneapolis and the whole Minneapolis-St. Paul community through this difficult and frightening time.

YWCA Minneapolis’ Midtown location, located in the heart of the area where George Floyd was murdered and the scene of current protests, alongside YWCA St. Paul have served the Twin Cities community for over 100 years. We stand together with the people that we serve and our community stakeholders to eliminate racism and empower women.

This work and our mission are at the core of what we do, and today we lift our collective voices to demand justice.

“George Floyd was one of ours," said Gaye Adams Massey, CEO, YWCA St. Paul. "He took advantage of a training program offered by YWCA St. Paul and, like many of those we partner with, he was taking steps to build a brighter future.

"The anger, anguish, and grief we are feeling in this community are real. And yet, we must channel those emotions into positive action that demands justice, drives change, and most importantly honors his memory."

“We condemn the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis Police Department officers," said Michelle Basham, MPA/ESQ, CEO/president, YWCA Minneapolis. "We have seen this tragedy before.

"Unfortunately, George Floyd is just one of countless other black lives lost to police violence, including that of Jamar Clark and Philando Castile. We must work toward racial justice. And we must work in partnership with others to hold our elected officials and law enforcement accountable.”

Together with YWCA Minneapolis and YWCA St. Paul, over 200 YWCAs across the country unite to answer the cry for justice, peace, and dignity for all. YWCA continues to call for dismantling systemic racism and equal protection and opportunity under the law through its public policy and advocacy work.

At YWCA, we demand a world of equity and human decency. We envision a world of opportunity. We commit ourselves to the work of racial justice.

We will get up and continue to do the work until injustice is rooted out, until institutions are transformed, until the world sees women, girls, and people of color the way we do: Equal. Powerful. Unstoppable.

May 28, 2020 - 5:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, notify, Le Roy.
Video Sponsor
blessedmug2020.jpg
             Joshua Blessed

A man from Harrisonburg, Va., whose social media posts indicate he thought he spoke directly to God and received visions of the devil, has been identified as the driver of a tractor-trailer involved in a high-speed pursuit through three counties last night before he engaged in a shoot-out with police near Geneseo.

Joshua Blessed, formerly Sergio Jourev, 58, was killed in the incident. He had also posted a video to his YouTube account with the headline "Brave Patriot defending US Constitution and 2A vs. Domestic terrorist gang member 'blue devils.' "

The video is taken from the dashcam of a police patrol vehicle and shows what appears to be a traffic stop where the driver opened fire on the police officer and engaged in a protracted gun battle before fleeing in his sedan.  

The description of the video asks viewers to join Blessed's "militia" and links to a website where he claims that in February 2018 he received a new message from heaven calling on him to recruit an army to fight a new civil war.

Livingstone County Sheriff Thomas J. Dougherty said Blessed fired numerous rounds at officers and struck four patrol vehicles, two from Livingston County, one from Genesee County, and one from Le Roy PD.

The bullet that hit the Genesee County Sheriff's patrol car entered through the windshield, struck the headrest and became lodged in the plexiglass divider between the back and front seats.

"I believe if he wasn't ducking, then it would have been right to his head," Dougherty said.

Blessed was employed by a trucking company, Yurman Express, in Harrisonburg and was driving to Batavia to pick up dairy products when at 8:37 p.m. a Le Roy police officer attempted to stop his tractor-trailer for speeding through the village.

When he was uncooperative with the first officer, the officer called for backup. When the second officer arrived, both officers approached the cab of the truck, each getting onto the running boards on both the driver's and passenger's side of the vehicle.

Le Roy Chief Chris Hayward said the officer on the passenger side observed a handgun in the vehicle.  

One of the officers stepped down from the truck and at that point, Blessed began to drive off. The other officer was able to safely jump from the moving vehicle.

As he fled, Blessed rammed his truck into a Sheriff's patrol vehicle that had responded as backup for the Le Roy officers. He headed westbound on Route 5 toward Batavia. Batavia PD was alerted and officers responded to the city line but before Blessed reached Batavia, at some point after passing through Stafford at a high rate of speed, he managed to turn his truck around.

Sheriff Bill Sheron said he hadn't yet spoken with the officers involved, so it wasn't clear to him how the trucker managed to execute a U-turn on Route 5.

"I think they were quite amazed, too, that he was able to maneuver the vehicle the way he did," Sheron said.

Now eastbound, when Blessed returned to the Village of Le Roy, he proceeded south on Route 19 toward Pavilion. Sheriff's deputies attempted to stop the truck at the county line with spike strips. Blessed continued south through Wyoming County to Route 63 in Livingston County near Geneseo.  Livingston County deputies also tried to deploy spike strips to no avail.

In Livingston County, Blessed started taking shots at police officers.

At one point, Sheriff Dougherty pulled up along the passenger side of the cab of the truck and Blessed fired rounds in his direction. Neither the patrol vehicle nor Dougherty was struck. 

"This isn't a common type of situation where you not only have a heavy, heavy vehicle that is near impossible to stop but also the person then taking shots at cops," Dougherty said. "So it was a stressful, intense incident."

Once the vehicle was stopped, the gun battle continued. Sheron said at least one of his deputies fired shots at Blessed.

The official cause of death for Blessed has not been determined but Dougherty said he sustained multiple gunshot wounds.

On his website, Blessed wrote in February 2018:

This is Joshua Blessed the man of Yahweh, for the spirit of אליהו /EliYahu ( My El is Yahweh), is upon me!

As of February 12. 2018, I received from heaven a new task; “go, begin recruiting for a heavenly hosts/army,..”

My brother, the king of heaven Yahweh of hosts said to me,  “…the civil war is coming and many shall die and descended to hell for the fruits of their life,…”

Here is my confession; As for me, for many years I was blind /slave of “the Beast”,… but now my spirit is revived by my Redeemer Yahweh of hosts, and His holy spirit is upon me and causes me > love Yahweh unto death, for He took away the fear of death of me,…It is why now I seek to die as His warrior for His great name > the king of heaven Yahweh of hosts!

The Batavian's news partner 13WHAM is reporting that Blessed had been banned from a militia site for reportedly being "self-destructive."

He posted multiple videos equating law enforcement with the devil and domestic terrorists. He also posted videos, speaking in what may be a Russian accent, describing dreams and visions he had.  

His Facebook page indicates he was banned by the network for violating community standards in April, a ban that was extended to June 16. His offending posts were described as bullying.

Dougherty said investigators are looking into Blessed's social media posts in an attempt to work up a full profile of the man.

"(Among the) things that we're looking at: How extreme is he?" Dougherty said. "What other encounters has he had with police? What led to this yesterday? Again, there are so many unknowns that we can't interview him on. So these are things that we have to put together. And this is what police agencies do. We put together a timeline and try and get the best answers possible to conclude our investigation."

Dougherty praised the professional response of members of law enforcement from the multiple agencies who participated in the incident.

"Members from various agencies put their life on the line trying to warn traffic ahead, blocked the roadways, get everybody removed all the while knowing that he's popping shots," Dougherty said. "I can only tell you that it is simply unbelievable that nobody was injured."'

UPDATE 6:50 p.m.: An editor with the Harrisonburg Daily-News Record contacted the Sheriff there about Blessed and says the Sheriff told him his office never had any encounters with Blessed, at least nothing serious. Our news partner 13WHAM reports Blessed had a wife and two children.  

Also from 13WHAM: Drivers recall fearing for their lives as they got caught in middle of dangerous pursuit

Previously: After high-speed chase that ended with shoot out, Le Roy chief kept thinking of the 'what ifs'

Video provided by our news partner 13WHAM.

May 28, 2020 - 4:29pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, notify, batavia, Le Roy, Bethany.

Dillen Andrew Merrell, 24, of Bernd Road, Le Roy, is charged with third-degree assault. He was arrested on May 26 following the complaint of an assault that allegedly occurred at 11:36 p.m. on May 22 on Ellicott Street Road in Bethany. He was arraigned in Genesee County Court May 26 and released on his own recognizance. He is due to return to county court at 3 p.m. on Aug. 11. The case was investigated by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Joshua Brabon, assisted by Officer Jordan Alejandro.

Destiny M. Green, 23, of Walnut Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment -- physical contact. Green was arrested at 12:45 p.m. on May 23 after allegedly subjecting a person in her household to unwanted physical contact by striking them with a shoe and then kicking them repeatedly. Green was issued an appearance ticket, then released after her arrest. She is due in Batavia City Court on July 22. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Miah Stevens, assisted by Officer Stephen Quider.

Daniel R. Yates, 50, of Pearl Street, Batavia, is charged with dog running at large. He was arrested at 5:23 p.m. on Pearl Street after his two dogs allegedly escaped from his home and subsequently a person was bitten by one of the dogs. He was issued an appearance ticket after his arrest and is due in Batavia City Court on July 21. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Miah Stevens.

James W. Shute, 37, of Humphrey Street, Warsaw, is charged with disobeying a court order. On May 22, Batavia Police Officer Peter Post arrested Shute for second-degree criminal contempt after he allegedly violated an order of protection on May 16 on Main Street in Batavia. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court on July 28.

Corey Allen Brown, 34, of Highland Park, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Brown was arrested after an investigation into a bicycle that was stolen on April 22 at 5:53 p.m. on Highland Park. Brown was arrested, issued an appearance ticket, and is due in Batavia City Court on July 14. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Flanagan.

Alicia M. Lyons, 40, of State Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. Lyons was arrested at 5:17 on May 21 at the Kwik Fill on the corner of Jackson and Ellicott streets in Batavia after officers were called for a reported larceny. After a brief interview, Lyons allegedly produced the stolen property and turned it over to the officers. Lyons was arrested, issued an appearance ticket for June 16 in Batavia City Court, then released from custody. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Nicole McGinnis, assisted by Officer Felicia DeGroot.

May 28, 2020 - 12:53pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy, notify, news.

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No traffic stop is routine. Cadets are taught that truism at every law enforcement academy in the nation. Field trainers drum it into their heads when rookies first hit the road.

A "routine" traffic stop of a white tractor-trailer on Main Street in Le Roy last night turned out to be a stark reminder for his officers that they always need to be prepared for the unexpected, Le Roy Chief Chris Hayward said this morning.

Hayward got to bed late last night, slept fitfully and said what kept running through his head were all the "what if" scenarios. He considered how things could have turned out much worse after a trucker decided to lead local law enforcement on a high-speed pursuit through three counties. The trucker was killed in an apparent shoot-out at a location near Geneseo in Livingston County.

No bystanders nor officers were injured or killed. That's a relief, Hayward said.

"It's one of those things that you try to convey to your officers, especially your young officers, that there is no such thing as a routine traffic stop," Hayward said. "I think this incident conveyed that effectively. I'm thankful nobody was hurt last night.

"I kept thinking of all the 'what ifs,' " he added. "What if he decided to open fire on our officers on West Main Street rather than in Livingston County? You think of all of those scenarios and you're thankful for all of the young folks involved. I thought of all those officers in this situation and they did a tremendous job, as did the dispatchers in both counties, keeping the information flow going in both counties. The dispatchers did a tremendous job."

The chase started when a Le Roy officer initiated a traffic stop of the truck for speeding on West Main Street. The driver stopped and the officer approached the driver's side, climbed up on the running board to talk to the driver. The driver refused to provide documentation or identification. At that point, the officer backed off and requested backup.

When a second officer arrived, they both approached the driver again. They spoke to the driver, each positioned on opposite sides of the cab. At one point, one officer stepped off. Then the driver rolled up his window and started to drive away. The other officer was able to jump off the running board of the moving truck and was not hurt.

A deputy was arriving on scene at that point and the trucker rammed the patrol vehicle.

The three patrol vehicles then gave chase westbound on Route 5.

A witness in Stafford told The Batavian the pursuit passed her house at a high rate of speed. A short time later, she called back to say the truck and seven patrol vehicles were then eastbound.

"It's wild, like something out of a movie," she said.

That was a description others shared, Hayward said this morning.

There was nothing suspicious about the driver or the vehicle that popped up when officers ran -- as is routine on traffic stops --  the truck's plates, the chief said. He didn't have information at hand on where the truck was registered. 

"We had nothing to explain at that time why the operator was doing what he was doing," Hayward said. 

Officers were positioned at locations on Route 5 to set up possible spike strips, and at one point the trucker rammed a Le Roy patrol vehicle participating in that operation. The vehicle sustained significant damage but the officer was not hurt.

Sheriff Bill Sheron said he hadn't yet spoken with the officers involved this morning, so it wasn't clear to him how the trucker managed to execute a U-turn on Route 5.

"I think they were quite amazed, too, that he was able to maneuver the vehicle the way he did," Sheron said.

The trucker led officers back into the Village of Le Roy where he made a right-hand turn on Route 19, going southbound into Wyoming County, where Wyoming deputies joined the pursuit. The trucker continued to Route 63 into Livingston County.

He then reportedly stopped and began shooting at law enforcement officers.

Genesee County deputies were involved in exchanging gunfire with the driver, Sheron said.

One bullet from the driver went through a window of deputy's patrol vehicle, Sheron said, narrowly missing the head of the officer. Sheron declined to name the officer involved at this time.

"God must have been watching over us last night because it could have ended up much worse than it did," Sheron said. "That one vehicle took a round through the windshield and you can't get much closer. Thank God for every day."

Top Photo: The truck involved from this morning. All photos courtesy our news partner 13WHAM.

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May 27, 2020 - 9:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, scanner, notify, Stafford, batavia, Le Roy.

A white tractor-trailer was reportedly speeding westbound on Route 5 through Stafford, pursued by Genesee County Sheriff's deputies, when it managed to turn around and head eastbound on Route 5.

Batavia Police Department set up a perimeter on Route 5.

The big rig proceeded to Le Roy, where it turned onto Route 19 southbound.

Wyoming County Sheriff's deputies pursued the vehicle, which is now in Livingston County and being pursued by authorities there.

UPDATE 9:48 p.m.: A reader shared this emergency alert out of Livingston County:

"Law enforcement is currently in pursuit of a tractor-trailer on I-390 southbound from Geneseo. He is trying to ram traffic. Get off the highway at this time."

UPDATE 11:55 p.m.: The chase ended in Livingston County with the driver reportedly being shot by police, according to our news partner, 13WHAM. The chase started in Le Roy following a traffic stop for speeding. The driver reportedly fled with a Le Roy Police officer still on the running board of the vehicle. The truck struck several vehicles, including law enforcement vehicles, during the pursuit. There's no ID on the driver yet released nor have police disclosed any possible motive for the driver to flee.

May 26, 2020 - 6:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, batavia, State Street, notify.

As temperatures have gone up the past couple of days tempers have flared, it seems, in some parts of the city.

Over the past 24 hours, there have been multiple calls for disturbances on State Street, as well as calls to Hutchins Place, Jackson Street, Watson, and Thorpe.

On State Street, Police Chief Shawn Heubusch said it appears there are multiple neighbors who can't get along and he suggested they never have and they never will. 

"Nothing has risen to the level that we can arrest anybody," Heubusch said, though it would be helpful if witnesses to incidents were willing to put their statements in writing.

After a call on State Street this afternoon, which brought a response from Batavia PD and the Sheriff's Office, including a K-9, one deputy on State Street, when asked what was going on said, "A whole lot of 'I saw nothing.' "

"Neighbors have been calling, and that's good, but our hands are tied by changes to criminal justice this year," Heubusch said. "Without a statement, the most we can do is write an appearance ticket."

The local landlords are also more restricted in how they can respond to troublesome tenants, Heubusch noted, because of the moratorium ordered by Gov. Andrew Cuomo on most evictions, especially evictions related to missed rent payments.

Speaking of the COVID-19 pandemic response, Heubusch said, he doesn't think the recent spate of disturbances is the result of eight weeks of being on lockdown. 

"These calls mostly involve people we've dealt with before," Heubusch said. "I don't think the lockdown is coming into play."

Batavia PD does have cameras installed to help monitor the situation on State Street and at Watson and Thorpe.

He said he understands the public might want more done but that takes cooperating witnesses.

One of the objectives of a police response to a crowd of people involved in a ruckus is to get the people to disperse, Heubusch said. If police can do that, it will help defuse the situation and hopefully help avoid an escalation of violence.

It might be a long summer, the chief said.

"(The disturbances are) definitely a concern," Heubusch said. "That's for sure."

May 26, 2020 - 2:48pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, alexander, corfu, Pavilion.

Joshua Lee Baltz, 44, of Sparks Road, Pavilion, is charged with: aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in the first degree, a felony; driving while under the influence of drugs; and speeding -- going 76 in a 55-mph zone. Baltz was stopped for speeding on Alexander Road in Alexander at 11:51 p.m. on May 23 and allegedly found to be impaired by drugs. He was issued appearance tickets for Town of Alexander Court on July 21. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Sgt. Thomas Sanfratello, assisted by Deputy Ryan Young.

Warren David Post, 52, of Genesee Street, Corfu, is charged with: driving while intoxicated; DWI -- operating while having a BAC of .08 percent or higher; aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree; and failure to keep right. On May 24, Post was arrested at 4:44 p.m. on Pearl Street Road in Batavia following a traffic stop. He was released on traffic tickets returnable to Batavia Town Court on July 16. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Mathew Clor, assisted by Deputy David Moore.

Brianna S. Green, 23, of Batavia (no address provided), was arrested and charged with petit larceny following a shoplifting complaint at Walmart in the Town of Warsaw (Wyoming County). On March 29, it is alleged that she stole $65.82 in merchandise. Green was arrested on May 23 on the charge. She is due in Town of Warsaw Court on July 13. The case was handled by Wyoming County Sheriff's Sgt. Colin Reagan.

May 23, 2020 - 1:54pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, batavia, notify.
welchanthonymugmay2020.jpg
      Anthony Welch

Anthony J. "Science" Welch, 39, of Rochester, is charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd, after allegedly being found in possession of crack cocaine following a traffic stop by the Local Drug Task Force.

The charge is premised on the allegation that the amount of the narcotic in Welch's possession indicates he intended to sell it.

Welch was a passenger in a car driven by Steven R. Colombo, 33, of Batavia, who was allegedly driving while his privilege was suspended.

Another passenger, Amy L. Coulson, 33, of Batavia, was also arrested and charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th, and criminally using drug paraphernalia, 2nd.

Following the traffic stop, Welch and Coulson were taken to the Genesee County Jail and based on a search warrant they were searched. Welch was allegedly found in possession of crack cocaine that he tried to hide during the traffic stop. 

Welch was also charged with tampering with physical evidence, promoting prison contraband, and criminally using drug paraphernalia.  

Colombo was charged with aggravated unlicensed operation, 3rd.

Following arraignment, Welch was released under supervision of Genesee Justice and Coulson and Colombo were released on appearance tickets. 

The Task Force was assisted by Batavia PD, Corrections Officers, and the District Attorney's Office.

May 22, 2020 - 1:49pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, crime, notify, batavia.

D'Andre J. Cramer, 21, of Dellinger Avenue, Batavia, is charged with third-degree coercion and third-degree assault. Cramer was arrested at 10:46 p.m. on May 7 after a domestic incident on Dellinger Avenue. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and is due in Batavia City Court on June 5th. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Kevin DeFelice.

Michael R. Ostrander, 55, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment and third-degree menacing. Ostrander was arrested following an incident in the 400 block of East Main Street, Batavia, at 10 p.m. on May 18. It is alleged that he touched a person and threatened another. He is due in Batavia City Court on June 16. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Adam Tucker, assisted by Officer Peter Flanagan.

Jamar T. Shipp, 31, of Niagara Street, Niagara Falls, is charged with aggravated harassment. Shipp was arrested on May 19 after an investigation and arraigned at 4:07 p.m. in Batavia City Court. It is alleged that at 5:21 p.m. on May 9 during a phone call that Shipp threatened to physically harm a female. He was released on his own recognizance and is due to return to city court on July 1. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Alex Roberts.

Matthew W. Barber, 52, of West Main Street, Batavia, is charged with unauthorized use of a computer. Barber was arrested at 9:26 a.m. on May 21 after an investigation into an incident that occurred at 12:15 a.m. on May 19 in the 700 block of Ellicott Street, Batavia. He was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court on June 9. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Joshua Girvin.

Christopher Parker, 31, of Morse Place, Batavia, and Joshua Williams, 30, of Portland Avenue, Rochester, are charged with: unlawful possession of marijuana in the second degree, a violation; criminal possession of marijuana in the second degree, also a violation; and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree, a misdemeanor. The duo was arrested by City of Batavia Police Officer Wesley Rissinger and the Genesee County Local Drug Task Force after a traffic stop (location and time not provided) on May 21. They were issued appearance tickets and are due in City of Batavia Court on June 16.

May 21, 2020 - 5:15pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, bergen.

Press release:

U.S. Attorney James P. Kennedy, Jr. announced today that Guillermo Torres-Acevedo, 23, of Batavia, who was convicted of enticing a minor to travel to engage in criminal sexual activity, was sentenced to serve 84 months in prison (7 years) and 10 years supervised release by Chief U.S. District Judge Frank P. Geraci Jr.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Meghan A. Tokash, who handled the case, stated that on Nov. 25, 2018, the defendant, then a 22-year-old man, had sexual relations with the victim, a 14-year-old girl. Torres-Acevedo was arrested the following day for, among other charges, rape in violation of New York Penal Law.

Following his arrest, the defendant persuaded the victim to travel with him out of state to continue their relationship. On Nov. 29, 2018, Torres-Acevedo picked up the victim from school in Genesee County and drove her to Pennsylvania, where they had sexual intercourse. Under Pennsylvania law, that constituted the crime of statutory sexual assault.

The sentencing is the result of an investigation by the Genesee County Sheriff’s Office, under the direction of Sheriff William A. Sheron Jr.; the New York State Police, under the direction of Major Eric Laughton; the Pennsylvania State Police, under the direction of Commissioner Lieutenant Colonel Robert Evanchick; and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Gary Loeffert. 

PreviouslyBatavia man pleads guilty to rape in Amber Alert case

May 21, 2020 - 2:33pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, Alabama, elba.

Shawn Philip Stevens, 42, of Hundredmark Road, Elba, is charged with second-degree criminal contempt. On May 20, Genesee County Sheriff's deputies J. Dimmig and D. Moore arrested Stevens in relation to a domestic incident that occurred on South Main Street in the Village of Elba at 9:45 p.m. on May 16. Stevens was arrrested and charged with the crime for allegedly violating an order of protection.

Shannon Maria Armstead, 27, of Bloomingdale Road, Alabama, is charged with second-degree menacing and second-degree harassment. At 7:36 p.m. on May 19, Armstead was arrested after a complaint about a physical altercation in the Town Alabama. Armstead was issued appearance tickets and is due in Town of Alabama Court on June 10. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Joshua Brabon, assisted by Deputy David Moore.

May 19, 2020 - 3:53pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, pembroke, batavia, Le Roy, bergen.
arteagamugmay192020.jpg
   Alejandro Arteaga

Alejandro Andreseaga Arteaga, 22, of Harvester Avenue, Batavia, is charged with: criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third-degree -- methamphetamine, with intent to sell, a Class B felony; criminal possession of a weapon in the third degree, a Class D felony; driving while ability impaired by drugs -- with a previous conviction, a Class E felony; criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh-degree (marijuana), a Class A misdemeanor; using a vehicle without a required interlock device, a violation. On May 18, following a traffic stop on Lake Street in the Village of Le Roy during which a firearm and narcotics were allegedly found, Arteaga was arrested. It is also alleged that he had an open container of alcohol in the vehicle at the time. He was arraigned in Genesee County Court and released to Genesee Justice. He is due back in court at 2 p.m. on July 1. The case was investigated by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Rachel Diehl, assisted by Le Roy Police Sgt. Greg Kellogg.

Tyshon L. Taylor, 23, of Walnut Street, Batavia, is charged with: aggravated family offense; third-degree criminal mischief; endangering the welfare of a child; and third-degree menacing. Taylor was arrested May 15 on the charges that stem from a domestic incident at 4 p.m. on May 14 on Walnut Street. It is alleged that Taylor cracked the windshield of his girlfriend's vehicle during an argument while her child was in the vehicle. While being taken into custody, he reportedly stated that he had been quarantined and "began intentionally coughing at officers." He was processed at Batavia Police Headquarters, arraigned in Batavia City Court via Skype and released under supervision of Genesee Justice. He was held at Genesee County Jail on a Parole Detainer Warrant. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Joshua Girvin, assisted by Officer Wesley Rissinger, Officer Peter Post and Officer Alec Roberts.

Jason A. McFollins, 42, of North Spruce Street, of Batavia, is charged with criminal mischief and second-degree harassment. McFollins was arrested at 5 a.m. on May 17 on Ellsworth Avenue, Batavia, following a domestic incident. It is alleged that he damaged property and struck another person during the incident. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and released on his own recognizance. He is due back in city court on June 25. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Officer Peter Flanagan.

Kaitlyn M. Rector, 22, of Liberty Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. Rector was arrested following an investigation into a domestic incident that occurred at 10:41 p.m. on May 16 on Liberty Street. It is alleged that she struck another person during the incident. She was arraigned in Batavia City Court and is due to return there on July 1. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Flanagan, assisted by Officer Stephen Cronmiller.

Kelli E. Wallace, 57, of Swan Street, Batavia, is charged with endangering the welfare of a child. The defendant was arrested following the investigation into a physical altercation between two people under age 17 that occurred at 1:06 p.m. on May 8 on South Jackson Street in the City of Batavia. It is alleged that Wallace was present at the altercation and encouraged the physical altercation to occur. She was issued an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court on June 23. The case was handled by Batavia Police Sgt. Dan Coffey.

Stephen Vance Recco, 29, of Vine Street, Batavia, is charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief -- intentionally damaging property. It is alleged that Recco intentionally smashed a laptop belonging to his roommate after a dispute at 10:45 a.m. on March 28 on Vine Street. He was processed at Batavia Police Headquarters, then issued an appearance ticket returnable to Batavia City Court on June 9. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Wesley Rissinger, assisted by Officer Nicole McGinnis.

Matthew Jacob Reid, 26, of Buck Road, Warsaw, is charged with driving while ability impaired by drugs, criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree, and moving from lane unsafely. Reid was arrested at 11:30 p.m. on May 16 on Telephone Road in Pavilion after a single motor-vehicle accident. It is alleged that he possessed a controlled substance at the time. Reid is due in Pavilion Town Court on June 9 to answer the charges. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy David Moore, assisted by Deputy Nicholas Chamoun.

William George Silpoch, 46, of Ridge Road, Holley, is charged with driving while intoxicated and resisting arrest. He was arrested at 7 p.m. on May 14 on Sautell Road in Bergen after he allegedly drove a motor vehicle and then passed out in the vehicle in the driveway of a residence. He allegedly resisted arrest while being taken into custody by Sheriff's deputies. Silpoch was issued an appearance ticket returnable to Town of Bergen Court on July 8. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Jacob Gauthier, assistef by Deputy Erik Andre.

Tina M. Caracci, 49, of Hilltop Road, Rochester, is charged with driving while intoxicated and aggravated DWI -- with a BAC of .18 or higher. Caracci was arrested at Richmond Memorial Library, 220 Richmond Ave., Batavia, after a complaint. She was processed at Batavia Police Headquarters and released. She is due in Batavia City Court on June 3. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Peter Flanagan, assisted by Officer Mitchell Cowen.

Kahel S.D. Suttles, 23, of Dodge Street, Buffalo, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property in the fifth degree and possession of burglar's tools. Suttles was arrested for allegedly taking items during a larceny at a store on Veterans Memorial Drive in Batavia at 5 p.m. on Feb. 23. The defendant was arrested at mile marker 397.6 on the Thruway and is scheduled to be arraigned in Town of Pembroke Court on June 23. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Investigator Christopher Parker, assisted by Deputy David Moore and Deputy Kyle Krzemien.

Matthew C. Olcott, 41, Clinton Street Road, Batavia, was arrested on three bench warrants out of Batavia City Court following a traffic stop (location not disclosed) by the New York State Police and Genesee County Sheriff's deputies on May 13. He was arraigned in Alabama Town Court at 12:15 a.m. May 14 and released on his own recognizance. He is due to return to Batavia City Court on June 23. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Sean Wilson.

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