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December 4, 2018 - 1:32pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news.

Police are looking for a suspected shoplifter in the area of State Street, Batavia.

The subject is suspected of stealing an item from JCPenney, running from the store, and knocking an elderly female over as he fled.

He is described as a black male with a black backpack and camo pants.

An ambulance is requested to the store for an elderly female with a hip injury.

UPDATE 1:39 p.m.: A suspect is apparently in custody.

December 4, 2018 - 1:16pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, batavia, Stafford, notify.

Douglas Goodwin Sr., 67, of Bank Street, Batavia, is charged with third-degree criminal tampering. Goodwin was located at his residence and arrested for allegedly throwing clothing and furniture that belonged to his Bank Street tenant outside at 11:20 a.m. on Oct. 28. This is said to have created a substantial inconvenience for his tenant to clean up and repair his property. Goodwin is due in Batavia City Court this afternoon (Dec. 4). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Marc Lawrence.

A 17-year-old male who lives on Walnut Street in Batavia is charged with: endangering the welfare of a child; second-degree harassment; two counts of fourth-degree criminal mischief; and first-degree coercion. The teen was arrested following an investigation into a domestic dispute that occurred at 8 p.m. on Nov. 30 on Lewis Place in Batavia. He was arraigned in Batavia City Court and jailed without bail and was due back in City Court on Dec. 3. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Christopher Lindsay, assisted by Officer Peter Flanagan.

Kevin J. Fickel, 37, of State Street, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny following an incident at JCPenney at 3:14 p.m. on Nov. 20. It is alleged that Fickel took two sets of cookware and exited the store without paying for the items. He is due in Batavia City Court this afternoon (Dec. 4). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Chad Richards.

Dalton C. Kelley, 21, of Chase Park, Batavia, is charged with second-degree harassment. Kelley was arrested at 3 p.m on Nov. 27 following an investigation into a report that he grabbed another individual and scratched them. He was released on an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court on Dec. 11. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Ivison, assisted by Officer Christopher Camp.

Leonard T. Masters, 49, of Split Rail Road, Painted Post, is charged with: DWI; aggravated DWI; failure to keep right; improper left turn; and failure to obey traffic control device. Masters was arrested at 12:52 a.m. on Nov. 23 on Ellicott Street in Batavia following a traffic stop. He was released on appearance tickets and is due in Batavia City Court on Dec. 12. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Felicia DeGroot, assisted by Officer Matthew Lutey.

Andrew D. Vicary, 27, of East Main Road, Stafford, is charged with DWI, unsafe backing, and following too closely. He was arrested at 4:04 p.m. on Nov. 1 following an investigation into a three-car accident that occurred at the intersection of East Main Street and Swan Street in Batavia. He was arraigned and released on his own recognizance. He was due in Batavia City Court on Nov. 2. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Kyle Krtanik, assisted by Officer Catherine Mucha.

Alyssa M. Harnish, 30, of Ellsworth Avenue, Batavia, is charged with petit larceny. She was arrested at 12:30 p.m. on Nov. 28 following a shoplifting complaint at Tops Friendly Market in Batavia. She was released on an appearance ticket and is due in Batavia City Court this afternoon (Dec. 4). The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jason Ivison.

Jessica L. Holtz, 35, of Williams Street, Batavia, was arrested on Nov. 28 on a bench warrant for alleged failure to appear in Batavia City Court. She was arraigned and put in jail and is due in back in court at a later date. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Quider, assisted by Officer Felicia DeGroot.

Aretha Jackson, 41, of Main Street, Oakfield, was arrested on Nov. 20 on an active bench warrant issued out of Batavia City Court. It is alleged that Jackson failed to appear for a court date scheduled on Sept. 5. She was arraigned in City Court and jailed in lieu of $250 cash or bond. She was due back in court on Nov. 21. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Chad Richards, assisted by Officer Jamie Givens.

Jessica L. Connolly, 40, of Bank Street, Batavia, was arrested on Nov. 28 on a bench warrant after allegedly failing to appear in Batavia City Cpourt for a traffic misdemeanor and other traffic violations. She was released on her own recognizance and was due back in court on Nov. 28. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Jamie Givens, assisted by Officer Marc Lawrence.

Brandon D. Brewer, 29, of Maple Avenue, Medina, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana. Brewer was arrested at 2:54 a.m. on Nov. 18 on East Main Street in Batavia while patrols were investigating an accident. He is due in Batavia City Court on Dec. 5 to answer the charge. The case was handled by Batavia Police Officer Stephen Quider, assisted by Officer Nicole McGinnis.

December 3, 2018 - 3:25pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, notify.
mugadammcgill2018.jpg
      Adam McGill

A Batavia resident who has served three prior prison terms was arraigned in County Court this morning on a sealed grand jury indictment for alleged drug dealing.

Adam McGill, 40, is charged with single counts of criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd, and criminal sale of a controlled substance, 3rd.

He is accused of selling narcotics on an occasion in February.

McGill first prison term came after a conviction in Genesee County on charges of attempted criminal possession of a forged instrument, 2nd, and attempted burglary, 3rd, in 2001.

In 2003, he was convicted of criminal possession of a forged instrument and sent to state prison again.

His last felony conviction was for criminal sale of a controlled substance, 3rd, in 2012 in Wyoming County. He served three and a half years at Groveland and was released from parole in February 2017.

In arguing for $10,000 bail for McGill, Public Defender Jerry Ader pointed to McGill's nearly two years of unsupervised freedom since then, but Assistant District Attorney Kevin Finnell countered that McGill has 19 total arrests, which includes 15 felony counts, and three failures to appear on prior court cases, including one that required an arrest on a warrant.

Judge Charles Zambito set bail at $25,000 cash or $50,000 bond.

NOTE: There's been no press release yet from the law enforcement agency that investigated this case. When there is one we will update this post with any new information.

December 3, 2018 - 2:14pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, Basom, Darien, Pavilion, Alabama, pembroke, Le Roy.

David J. Somerton, 36, of Kelsey Road, Batavia, (in photo above) is charged with possession of obscene sexual performance by a child and use of a child in a sexual performance, both felonies. He was arraigned on the charges on Nov. 29 in Batavia Town Court. Somerton was initially arrested and arraigned on five counts of disseminating indecent material to a minor on Oct. 31 after investigation into a sex offense that occurred in the Town of Batavia Oct. 13. The new charges stem from further investigation and additional charges are pending. The case was investigated by Genesee County Sheriff's Investigator Howard Carlson, assisted by Investigator/Youth Officer Timothy Westcott. The Genesee County Sheriff's Office Criminal Investigation Division was assisted by the FBI Buffalo field office.

Alvin Ezra Way, 57, of Bank Street, Batavia, is charged with second-degree criminal contempt. He was arrested at 9:06 p.m. on Dec. 1 on Colonial Way in Batavia for allegedly violating an order of protection by having personal contact with the protected party. He was issued an appearance ticket for Dec. 17 in Town of Batavia Court. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Travis DeMuth, assisted by Deputy Erik Andre.

Christie Lynn Daniels, 22, of Council House Road, Basom, is charged with: DWI, speeding in excess of 55 mph, and unlicensed operation -- driving without a license. At 1:59 a.m. on Dec. 2 on Lewiston Road in Batavia, Daniels was stopped by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Ryan Young for allegedly speeding. After an investigation, it is alleged that Daniels was driving without a license and while intoxicated. She was issued appearance tickets for Dec. 17 in Batavia Town Court. Deputy Young was assisted in the case by Deputy Austin Heberlein.

Trisha A. Park, 26, of Le Roy, was arrested in the evening on Nov. 30th by the Le Roy Police Department and charged with: aggravated driving while intoxicated with a child passenger under 15 years of age inside the vehicle, a class E felony; operating a motor vehicle impaired by drugs and endangering the welfare of a child -- both misdemeanors; unlawful possession of marijuana and inadequate headlights on a motor vehicle, both violations. At approximately 5:45 p.m. on Nov. 30th, patrols observed a vehicle operating without a headlight on Wolcott Street in the Village of Le Roy. Patrols initiated a traffic stop and interviewed the operator. While speaking with the operator, patrols allegedly noticed a strong marijuana odor emanating from the vehicle. A vehicle search would allegedly reveal marijuana as well as marijuana paraphernalia. After a brief investigation it was allegedly determined that Park was impaired by drugs. Park was taken into custody without incident and was evaluated by a Drug Recognizant Expert. Park was arraigned in Le Roy Town Court and released under supervision. Park is due back in court on Dec. 20th.

Frank L. Cortright, 60, of Route 77, Alabama, is charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief. It is alleged that at 12:15 p.m. on Nov. 30 on Pratt Road in Pembroke that Cortright intentionally damaged property belonging to another individual. He was issued an appearance ticket returnabled to Pembroke Town Court on Dec. 11. The case was handled by Genesee Coounty Sheriff's Deputy Travis DeMuth.

Stephen Michael Milroy, 24, of Perry Road, Pavilion, is charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and unlawful possession of marijuana. At 3:42 a.m. on Dec. 1, Milroy was arrested on Park Road in Batavia after investigation into a report of an unconscious male sleeping in his vehicle in the Batavia Downs' parking lot. Milroy was processed at the jail and issued appearance tickets returnable to Batavia Town Court on Dec. 17. The case was handled by Deputy Andrew Mullen.

Christopher Jai Shawn Middleton, 24, of Dumont Avenue, Brooklyn, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and speeding. The defendant was stopped at 8:35 a.m. on Sumner Road in Darien on Nov. 29 for allegedly speeding. Investigation allegedly revealed he possessed marijuana. He was issued an appearance ticket returnable to Town of Darien Court on Dec. 11. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Kevin McCarthy.

December 3, 2018 - 12:54pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, notify.

Michelle Ann Case, whose criminal case goes back to 2011, still owes her former employer, HomeCare & Hospice, in the neighborhood of $14,000 but her restitution has yet to be placed on a payment plan by a judge and such a plan was delayed again in County Court this morning.

The 50-year-old Case has been through two trials, convicted twice but the first conviction was overturned on appeal.

This morning Judge Charles Zambito ordered Case to prepare a financial affidavit to help him determine appropriate monthly payments and set a hearing for 9:45 a.m., Dec. 18.

Meanwhile, Public Defender Jerry Ader, representing Case, is challenging Zambito's jurisdiction to order restitution payments.

Because Case has moved a couple of times since her jury trial conviction in July 2016 her probation was transferred to Erie County and then to Niagara County.

She is no longer on probation.

Ader contends that since she was last on probation in Niagara County, the county court in Niagara County has jurisdiction over restitution. He said there is no legal mechanism to transfer jurisdiction back to a court in Genesee County.

District Attorney Lawrence Friedman disagrees. He argued that legal precedent doesn't cover jurisdiction over restitution just other matters related to probation.

Ader said he will prepare a written memo for Zambito on his interpretation of legal precedent for Zambito to consider prior to the Dec. 18 hearing.

Case was convicted of falsifying business records in order to increase her compensation from HomeCare & Hospice. She said the inaccurate records were not her fault.

November 30, 2018 - 5:28pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in news, notify, crime, Pavilion, batavia, Stafford.
jackbensonmug2018.jpg
      Jack Benson

A 60-year-old Pavilion man has been arrested and accused of illegally selling fentanyl in Genesee County.

Jack E. Benson, of St. Mary's Street, Pavilion, is charged with three counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance, 3rd, and criminal possession of a controlled substance, 3rd.

Benson was taken into custody on an arrest warrant stemming from a sealed grand jury indictment following a traffic stop this afternoon in Stafford.

He is accused of selling fentanyl to an agent of the Local Drug Task Force on three different occasions. 

At the time of the stop, he was allegedly in possession of 24 doses of heroin and $1,300 in cash. 

Jolynn M. Gorski, 38, of Batavia, was reportedly a passenger in Benson's vehicle at the time of the stop. She was allegedly found in possession of drug paraphernalia and charged with criminal use of drug paraphernalia.

Benson was arraigned in County Court by Judge Charles Zambito and ordered held in the Genesee County Jail without bail. 

Additional charges are pending.

The arrest was the result of an investigation by the Local Drug Task Force. The task force was assisted by Batavia PD and the District Attorney's Office.

November 30, 2018 - 2:30pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, alexander, batavia, bergen, Pavilion.

A 16-year-old male who lives in Bergen was arrested and charged with second-degree harassment at 12:40 p.m. on Nov. 14. He allegedly grabbed and shook a teacher's head during class at Byron-Bergen High School. He was arraigned in Bergen Town Court and an order of protection was issued for the teacher. The teenager is due in Bergen Town Court at 5 p.m. on Dec. 12. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Matthew Butler.

Rodney Scott Schwartz, 53, of Broadway Road, Alexander, is charged with: DWI -- second offense within 10 years; aggravated unlicensed operation in the first degree; and open container of alcohol in a vehicle. Following an investigation into a domestic incident at 6:55 p.m. on Nov. 25, Schwartz was arrested on these charges and jailed on $1,000 cash bail or $2,000 bond. He was due in Alexander Town Court on Nov. 29. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy James Stack.

Sara Rae Tombari, 21, of Roanoke Road, Pavilion, is charged with third-degree bail jumping. She was arrested after failing to appear for a scheduled court appearance. She was arraigned at 1 p.m. on Nov. 27 in Batavia City Court and jailed in lieu of $2,500 bail. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Sgt. Thomas Sanfratello, assisted by Sgt. Ronald Meides.

Joseph Michael Smith, 42, of Colonial Lane, Bath, is charged with third-degree bail jumping. He was arrested after failing to appear for a scheduled court appearance. He was arraigned at 12:50 a.m. on Nov. 28 in Batavia Town Court and jailed in lieu of $1,000 bail. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Erik Andre.

November 29, 2018 - 7:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in news, crime, byron, notify.

A 14-year-old Byron girl who was the subject of an Amber Alert earlier today has been located safe, according to Sheriff Bill Sheron.

He said more information will be released soon.

The 22-year-old man, Guillermo Torres-Acevedo, suspected of taking her away from a location on West Bergen Road, Byron, has also been located.

UPDATE: The girl and Torres-Acevedo were located in Mansfield, Pa., by Pennsylvania State Police. Torres-Acevedo was taken into custody on a warrant and is being held pending extradition. The girl is returning to Genesee County. 

Assisting in the investigation, the New York State Police and U.S. Secret Service. Additional charges are pending.

November 29, 2018 - 5:41pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, byron, news, notify.
guillermo_torres-acevedo_updated_photo_0.jpg
        Guillermo Torres-Acevedo

UPDATE 7:15 p.m.: Amber Alert canceled. The girl has been located and is safe. The suspect has also been located.

The suspect in the disappearance of a 14-year-old girl from Byron shaved his head before this morning, according to Sheriff Bill Sheron.

This evening, the Sheriff's Office released an updated photo of Guillermo Torres-Acevedo with short hair and a trimmed Van Dyke-style goatee. 

According to the Sheriff's Office, Kamerie Elliot willingly got into Torres-Acevedo car at about 8 a.m. today and left with him and hasn't seen since.

She is considered in "imminent danger or serious harm and/or death" and an Amber Alert has been issued.

The suspect vehicle is a blue Dodge Journey are New York HHP5458.

Kamerie currently has hair that is dyed cotton-candy blue.  

If you have information or spot the vehicle or either individual, call 9-1-1 or (585) 343-5000.

For more information, our previous story: Girl from Byron missing after leaving with man ordered to stay away from her

amberalertcarnvo2912018.jpg

This is not a picture of the vehicle but it looks like the vehicle in this photo.

November 29, 2018 - 2:50pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, news, byron, notify.

amberalertnov282018.jpg

UPDATE 7:15 p.m.: Amber Alert canceled. The girl has been located and is safe. The suspect has also been located.

The Sheriff's Office believes a 14-year-old Byron girl was allegedly abducted this morning from a location on West Bergen Road, Byron by a 22-year-old man driving a blue Dodge Journey.

She is considered in "imminent danger or serious harm and/or death" and an Amber Alert has been issued.

Kamerie Elliot is described as 4 feet, 11 inches tall and 140 pounds. She normally has brown hair but recently dyed it a cotton-candy blue.

The suspect is Guillermo Torres-Acevedo, who has black hair and brown eyes. He is approximately 5 feet, 6 inches tall and weighs 180 pounds.

The license plates of the Dodge Journey are New York HHP5458.

According to Sheriff William Sheron, Kamerie and Torres-Acevedo knew each other and Torres-Acevedo had been arrested by State Police on Monday in connection with that an incident involving the girl.

According to State Police public information officer for Troop A, James O'Callahan, the Bureau of Criminal Investigations received a tip from the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and BCI opened an investigation into Torres-Acevedo's activities. Torres-Acevedo was arrested and charged with endangering the welfare of a child.

He was jailed on $5,000 bail and issued a complete stay away order as a result of the charge.

This morning, Kamerie apparently got into his car willingly at about 8 a.m.

The car was last seen traveling northbound on West Bergen Road. 

Town of Batavia Justice Tom Williams this morning signed an arrest warrant for Torres-Acevedo for the alleged violation of the stay away order.

If you have information or spot the vehicle or either individual, call 9-1-1 or (585) 343-5000.

UPDATE 3:21 p.m.: The suspect may have shaved his head this morning, according to Sheron.

amberalertcarnvo2912018.jpg

This is not a picture of the vehicle but this photo looks like the suspect vehicle.

November 26, 2018 - 2:46pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, Basom, batavia.

Daphne Sundown, of Basom, was arrested on Nov. 24 and charged with aggravated DWI -- with a BAC of .18 percent or greater, and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree. Troopers responded to a report of a vehicle accident on Greiner Road at the intersection of Goodrich Road in Clarence. Investigation revealed that she rear-ended another vehicle that was stopped at the light. Sundown subsequently allegedly failed field sobriety tests. During a search a small amount of cocaine was found on Sundown and in the vehicle. She was released with a return court date in Clarence.

Isaiah P. Petty, 21, of Van Schoick Avenue, Albany, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and drinking alcohol in the motor vehicle on a highway. Petty was arrested at 3:30 a.m. on Nov. 24 on Main Street in Batavia following a traffic stop. Petty was issued an appearance ticket and is due in City of Batavia Court on Dec. 18. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Joshua Brabon.

November 26, 2018 - 1:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in news, batavia, crime, notify.
blackshearsamuel20-18.jpg
  Samuel Blackshear

The attorney for the teenager accused of shooting murderer Nathaniel Wilson in the leg on May 17 on Central Avenue reached an 11th-hour plea agreement with District Attorney Lawrence Friedman today, saving his client a trial on felony assault charges. 

Jury selection was scheduled to begin today for Samuel Blackshear, 17, who was indicted by a grand jury on counts of attempted assault in the first degree, assault in the second degree, and two counts of criminal possession in the second degree.

Today, Blackshear entered a guilty plea to one count of criminal possession of a weapon with the understanding that he could be granted youthful offender status, which could mean probation or a 1 1/3 to four-year prison term, but if he isn't granted YO he faces at least three and a half years in state prison.

Whether Blackshear is declared a youthful offender will be entirely up to Judge Charles Zambito, who will issue his decision at Blackshear's sentencing at 2:30 p.m., Jan. 23, and Zambito, given the severity of the criminal possession of a weapon charge, can only reach that conclusion if he's convinced there were mitigating circumstances to justify Blackshear's possession of a loaded handgun.

Blackshear did not have a license to possess a handgun and at 17; he's too young to obtain a license to possess a loaded handgun.

His attorney, James Hinman, of Webster, will argue, he said, that there was justification, the mitigating circumstances necessary for Zambito to reach that conclusion.

Outside of court, Hinman explained that the video obtained from the pole camera placed by Batavia PD on Central Avenue just a day before the incident shows Wilson stabbing 41-year-old Terry J. Toote twice (Friedman said Toote was only stabbed once), killing him, and after dropping the knife, Wilson picks it up, walks into the middle of Central Avenue and starts approaching three other people in the street.

Toote, according to Hinman, is Blackshear's uncle. Friedman said he doesn't believe that is accurate.

"The video clearly shows (Wilson) threatening those other three people with that knife," Hinman said. "That is clearly, to me, a circumstance under which using deadly physical force to defend someone else is permitted under the law."

If the case had gone to trial, Hinman was expected to argue that Blackshear was justified in shooting Wilson but that only would have been a defense on the assault charge and the criminal possession of a weapon with intent to harm another person charge.

As Friedman explained after the hearing, "As you heard the defense attorney say, they were going to raise a justification defense, defense of yourself for others, and that would address the attempted assault first, the assault second, and also the one weapon possession charge that requires intent to use unlawfully, because if you are justified in the use then it wouldn't be unlawful use. But he realized that there was no defense to the possession of a loaded firearm outside of your home or place of business."

Wilson and Blackshear were two of the three defendants taken into custody after the May 17 incident. Also arrested was Jennifer Urvizu-Hanlon, 48, a Batavia businesswoman who owned a Mexican grocery store in the Valu Plaza.

Urvizu-Hanlon is accused of giving her licensed handgun to Blackshear at the Central Avenue scene.

She is charged with two counts of criminal possession of a weapon in the second degree, both Class C violent felonies.

Her attorney, Christian Kennedy, has indicated at previous court appearances on her behalf that he also intends to raise the justification defense if the case goes to trial.

Hinman thinks that in defending his client he could easily have convinced a jury that Blackshear was justified in shooting Wilson.

"All I would really need to have done is play the video, identify who Mr. Wilson is, who's Sammy, and that should have been the end of it," Hinman said.

Friedman said what Blackshear pled guilty to was actually one of the more serious charges of the indictment. 

"It's a Class C violent felony," Friedman said.

If Blackshear fails to abide by the terms of his release on bail while awaiting sentencing he could lose his chance for youthful offender status and the maximum prison term for the charge is 15 years in prison.

Friedman said he couldn't discuss whether at this point whether he will support, oppose, or be neutral on Blackshear's application for youthful offender status.

So far, Friedman said, he's satisfied with the outcomes of the prosecutions in the Central Avenue cases.

"We have taken care of two of the three defendants and I obviously feel they were appropriate dispositions," Friedman said. "As you know Nathaniel Wilson pled guilty to murder and got 20 to life."

CORRECTIONS: We corrected the sentencing options for Blackshear to include that he may still receive a prison sentence even if declared a Youthful Offender and that if YO is not granted the minimum term is 3 1/2 years.  We corrected the first name for Terry Toote. While Mr. Hinman said that Mr. Toote was stabbed twice, Mr. Friedman says he was only stabbed once. On two occasions, Mr. Hinman has referred to Mr. Toote and Mr. Blackshear's uncle, Mr. Friedman said he doesn't believe that's accurate.

Previously:

November 26, 2018 - 12:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, Le Roy, news, notify.
englerth_todd2018.jpg severino_philip2018.jpg
      Todd Englerth        Philip Serverino

A Stafford man was arrested Tuesday after allegedly struggling with a Le Roy police officer and leading him on a chase behind the Tops Market at 128 W. Main St., Le Roy.

Todd M. Englerth, 46, criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd, criminal possession of a control substance, 7th, obstructing governmental administration, 2nd, assault 3rd, and resisting arrest.

The incident began at 1:50 p.m. when the police officer spotted a white Ford pickup parked in the fire lane, a no parking zone, in front of the store.

Englerth was reportedly sitting in the passenger seat when the officer approached. The passenger told the officer that the driver, whom he identified as Phillip J. Severino, of Corfu, was in the store. 

According to the officer, during the interview, he observed brass knuckles in the armrest of the pickup in plain view.

When Severino came out of the store, the officer interviewed both Severino and Englehart in an attempt to determine who owned the brass knuckles.

During the investigation, the officer discovered Severino was allegedly in possession of a loaded handgun. Severino was detained and placed in the officer's patrol car.

The officer then attempted to detain Englerth, who allegedly refused to comply with the officer's verbal commands and then physically resisted.

The officer informed Englerth he was under arrest and Englerth allegedly continued to resist.

Multiple citizens attempted to assist the officer in restraining Englerth, according to Le Roy PD's report on the incident. 

Englerth reportedly broke free and ran.

The officer gave chase and he shot his taser at Englerth but with no effect.

Englerth reportedly ran into the woods behind the store. There was another struggle and the officer deployed his taser again, this time with effect.

Englerth was taken into custody as a result.

During the investigation, Englerth was allegedly found in possession of cocaine. 

The DEC's K-9 assisted in the investigation.

Severino and Englerth were arraigned in Le Roy Town Court and released under supervision of Genesee Justice.

Severino, 42, was charged with criminal possession of a weapon, 3rd.

Le Roy PD was assisted by the Sherif's Office and State Police.

Le Roy PD also thanked the citizens who attempted to assist at the scene.

November 23, 2018 - 6:01pm
posted by Billie Owens in alexander, corfu, crime, news, notify.

Julie Marie Neale, 37, of Alexander Road, Alexander, is charged with: driving while ability impaired by drugs; driver's view obstructed, uninspected motor vehicle, and failure to keep right. At 2:20 p.m. on Nov. 16, Neale was stopped on Oak Street in the City of Batavia following the observation of vehicle and traffic violations. Upon investigation, it was determined that Neale was allegedly operating her vehicle while her ability to do so was impaired by drugs. She was processed at the jail and released on appearance tickets and is due in Batavia City Court on Nov. 27. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Ryan DeLong.

Dave W. Case, 60, of Corfu, was arrested Nov. 20 and charged with unlawful possession of marijuana, consumption of alcohol in a motor vehicle, inadequate headlamps, and unsafe tires. He was arrested on Route 354 at Burrough Road in the Town of Bennington by Wyoming County Sheriff's Sgt. Colin Reagan following a traffic stop because a headlight was out. He was released to a family member and is due in Town of Bennington Court on Dec.17 to answer the charges.

November 21, 2018 - 6:13pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, notify.
murrell_constantinemug2018.jpg
 Constantine Murrell

Carjacking suspect Constantine Murrell, 35, a parolee from Rochester, entered a not-guilty plea at his arraignment today in Genesee County Court on counts of second-degree robbery and second-degree assault.

Murrell is accused of forcibly taking a car from a woman at the Kwik Fill, 99 Jackson St., Batavia, on Sept. 25.

He is also charged with reckless driving and unlawful fleeing a police officer.

After allegedly stealing the sedan, Murrell is accused leading police on a chase through city streets that reached 65 mph.

The chase came to an end when the stolen vehicle struck another car at Redfield Parkway and Richmond Avenue, which caused it to careen into a tree and the recently installed sign at the entrance of VA Medical Center.

The car then caught on fire.

The woman who had been driving the car was not physically injured.

Murrell was released from prison in April after serving an eight-year sentence for a 2010 kidnapping conviction in Rochester. He also has a previous drug conviction.

He reportedly told police after his arrest that he didn't know how he wound up in Batavia on Sept. 25. He said he had gotten into a truck with a man he didn't know in Rochester to do the drug K-2 and that the man left him in Batavia. He told police he panicked and just wanted to get back to Rochester.

“(I) couldn’t figure out how I would do it," Murrell is quoted in a court document as telling police. "I was at the gas station and saw an old lady in a white car at the gas pumps. I figured that it would be pretty easy to scare her and take her car.”

Judge Charles Zambito reaffirmed Murrell's bail status. He is being held without the possibility of bail. He will reappear in County Court on Jan. 23 for a hearing on pretrial motions.

There was no discussion of any potential plea offer.

The Batavian's news partner, 13WHAM contributed to this story.

November 21, 2018 - 12:50pm
posted by Billie Owens in crime, news, notify, batavia, alexander, Le Roy, Alabama, Oakfield.

Jason Eric Jones, 44, of Tracy Avenue, Batavia, is charged with introducing dangerous contraband into prison in the first degree and criminal possession of a controlled substance. Following an investigation at the GC Jail. Jones was arrested on the charges. It is alleged that while being in custody at the jail that he smuggled drugs into the facility with the intent to use them while incarcerated. He was arraigned in City Court, put in jail, and is due back in court at a later date. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Jeremy McClellan, assisted by Deputy Matthew Burgett.

Anthony James Demmer, 23, of Towne Place, Alabama, is charged with: DWI; operating a motor vehicle with a BAC of .08 percent or more; unsafe backing; and unlawful possession of marijuana. On Nov. 16 at 6:53  p.m., deputies responded to the 7-Elevent Store in Oakfield for a two-car property damage accident. Following an investigation, Demmer was arrested. He was issued appearance tickets and is due in Oakfield Town Court on Dec. 17. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's deputies Erik Andre and John Baiocco.

Nicholas J. Barr, 36 of Hilton, was arrested at 10:15 a.m. on Nov. 16 by troopers of out the State Police barracks in Batavia and charged with: unlawful possession of marijuana; criminal possession of a controlled substance, 7th; aggravated unlicensed operation, 2nd; along with other vehicle and traffic infractions. Troopers stopped Barr on East Main Road in the Town of Le Roy for having an uninspected motor vehicle. While interviewing Barr the odor of marijuana was allegedly present. Barr was allegedly found to be in possession of marijuana in addition to several canisters of THC oil. Further investigation also revealed Barr was operating with a suspended New York State driver's license. Barr was arrested and transported to SP Batavia for processing. He was arraigned at the Town of Le Roy Court and put in Genesee County Jail in lieu of $750 cash/$3,000 bond.

Cassandra Joy Barto, 22, of Dodgeson Road, Alexander, is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and having an obstructed driver's view. On Nov. 18 at 11:40 a.m., deputies stopped Barto's vehicle on Veterans Memorial Drive for vehicle and traffic law violations. She was arrested and issued appearance tickets for Town of Batavia Court on Dec. 17. The case was handled by Genesee County Sheriff's Deputy Erik Andre.

November 20, 2018 - 4:20pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in pawn king, pawn law, pawn shops, crime, law enforcement, news, notify.

img_2196publicservice.jpg

Local law enforcement is backing a new proposed county law to more tightly regulate pawnbrokers but the draft legislation may have a spill-over impact on other local businesses.

At least one county legislator, Andrew Young, is opposed to passing the new law.

A public hearing on the proposed law has been set for 5:30 p.m. on Dec. 12 in the Old County Courthouse. (Download PDF of proposed local law).

The purpose of the law is to help local law enforcement find stolen property, recover stolen property, and apprehend the criminals who pilfer other people's property. 

“Basically, our interest in doing this is an interest in not only being able to prosecute people who steal this property and take it to pawn shops to be sold, but also making it possible to make things right for victims of these burglaries," said District Attorney Lawrence Friedman, who drafted the proposed law at the request of Sheriff's Office.

Friedman, as well as Undersheriff Gregory Walker and Chief Deputy Jerome Brewster, were clear however, there's really only one business in Genesee County that is the target of the law and that is Pawn King, 4140 Veterans Memorial Drive.

"I worked with Jerry from the start five years ago," Friedman said. "The request came from local law enforcement because of a problem primarily with residential burglaries and that proceeds from these burglaries were primarily going to pawn shops and primarily one local pawn shop," Friedman told members of the Public Service Committee at a meeting Monday.

The Legislature considered a similar law five years ago but after opposition from scrap metal dealers at a public hearing, where they raised concerns about the logistical difficulty in tracking where scrap metal came from, the proposed law lost support among legislators.

County Attorney Kevin Earl has modified the bill to remove regulation of scrap metal dealers.

During his presentation in support of the proposed law, Friedman recalled two recent incidents he said illustrates the need for the law.

If you read the local news, Friedman told legislators, you know about a recent incident where a suspect pulled into the driveway of County Manager Jay Gsell and allegedly threw a stolen gun from the car. That case is linked, Friedman said, to a recent string of burglaries in the area and one of the suspects allegedly used a fake ID to pawn stolen items at Pawn King.

"That's a big problem," Friedman said. "That's one example of something that goes on here on a regular basis."

Friedman also said the assistant district attorney for the Town of Batavia Court recently took an affidavit from a witness who said he saw a person wheel an entire shopping cart full of merchandise from Walmart to Pawn King across the street and pawn all of the items.

"That's the kind of thing we're dealing with," Friedman said.

Brewster said the proposed law would make his job, and the job of all local criminal investigators, easier.

"It will make it harder to get away with illegal activity and make it easier to prosecute those who are breaking the law," Brewster said.

Friedman said when he wrote the law five years ago, he patterned it after a law already passed in Monroe County as well as ones in other jurisdictions.

There are similar other laws in other jurisdictions, including other states, and some of them have run into legal challenges over the implication in the laws of warrantless searches, which violate the Fourth Amendment.

Under the terms of these laws, including the law proposed in Genesee County, police officers can enter the place of business of a secondhand dealer without notice and inspect the property and demand to inspect the mandated records kept by the business.

In California, GameStop is suing over a pawn shop law.

In this law journal article, the author says that in New York, courts have found, specifically in People v. Keta, that the state has a greater interest in stopping chop shops from trafficking in stolen parts than chop shop owners have a right to privacy. The Supreme Court has ruled that records inspections of closely regulated businesses, which includes pawn shops, are permissible.

However, Onondaga County paid a $15,000 settlement in 2015 after a court ruled his business was the victim of a warrantless search under that county's pawn shop law. Also in New York, a New York City law that required law enforcement inspections of pawn shop records was struck down by a judge there.

Last night, The Batavian emailed Friedman and Earl and asked them how these New York cases, which are more relevant than cases in other states, differ from the proposed local law and we haven't received a response.

Young said Cattaraugus County passed a similar law and later repealed it. We couldn't find any news coverage of such a repeal, but we did find a story about the City of Salamanca deciding to repeal its pawn shop law after local antique dealers objected to the law.

While the proposed law does target pawn shops, the definition of secondhand dealers includes any business, with a couple of exceptions, that acquires previously used items for the purpose of resale to the public.

This would seem to include antique dealers, junk dealers, non-charitable thrift stores and secondhand shops, and used record stores.

Exceptions are written into the law for clothing and books but no other items.

Jewelry stores and coin dealers with sales of less than 15 percent of sales from used items are also exempt from the law. Also exempt, antique dealers who sell exclusively at trade shows and licensed auctioneers.

The law also covers the resale of gift cards. This seems to apply to the resale of gift cards from other businesses, which is common in local businesses, such as Tops Market, Walmart, and Target, as well as The Batavian.

Earl told legislators those type of gift cards, even though they are acquired from the issuer for resale to a third party, are not covered by the law.

He quoted from Section 2, paragraph F:

"Secondhand Article" means any article or object, with the exception of clothing and books, that has previously been bought or sold at retail and/or which has been previously used and/or is not in a new condition.  This shall include any “gift card” .... 

Earl argued that the law only covers gift cards that are considered "used" even though once a gift card is used, it loses its value.

The purpose of including gift cards is to deal with criminals who shoplift from stores such as Walmart and then return the items. Since they don't have a receipt, they are given a gift card. Brewster said, for example, they might get a $100 gift card and then walk over to Pawn King and sell it for $50.

When questioned after the meeting about clarity on the gift card provision, Friedman reiterated it was not the intention of the law to cover gift cards sold by The Batavian or retail outlets such as Tops. He said it would be up to the Legislature to refine the law if they thought such clarity was necessary.

"I guess what I'm going to say is we drafted it as we thought was appropriate," Freidman said. "This is not the end. You know there's going to be a public hearing and everyone is going to have an opportunity to be heard about that. And presumably, there could be further refinements made to it just like we did after the last public hearing."

The law as proposed requires secondhand dealers to acquire a license. There is a $150 annual fee for the license. Licenses could be denied to anybody with a criminal conviction and potentially to businesses with employees who have criminal convictions for property crimes.

Secondhand dealers would be required to keep written records of all transactions -- both buying and selling -- in their shops as well as enter data into LeadsOnline, a private business that law enforcement can contract with to track the acquisition of used merchandise by dealers. LeadsOnline is free to participating businesses.

Dealers would be required to obtain photo identification of every person, and make a photocopy of the ID, of every seller or buyer of merchandise.

Section 12, paragraph B:

Prior to acquiring or disposing of any secondhand article covered by this local law, every Secondhand Dealer shall request Identification from the seller or purchaser and shall verify the identity of such individual by comparing the individual to the photographic image contained on said Identification. The Secondhand Dealer shall record the individual’s name, date of birth and address (or current address if different than that listed on the Identification), and the Identification number (e.g., motorist ID number) listed on the Identification. The Secondhand Dealer shall make a photocopy of the front of the Identification.

Failure to comply with the law is a Class B misdemeanor.

The law also covered dealers who transact business online, such as eBay resellers, if they're based in Genesee County.

It's not clear how online retailers would comply with the requirement to obtain a physical ID of buyers and sellers.

License dealers must also allow local law enforcement and code enforcement to inspect their place of business prior to receiving a license and at any time upon request once the license is issued.

Young made the point that many Web-based businesses operate out of the owners' homes and he asked if such owners would be expected to make their homes subject to inspection by law enforcement.

None of the advocates for the law provided an answer to the question.

Young compared the law to code enforcement and health inspection laws, which usually involve an appointment with the inspector.

"Not only is an appointment made," Young said, "the consequences are you're not serving the lunch next day. In this case, you go to jail."

Earl said, as a Class B misdemeanor, there is no jail term. It's more like a traffic ticket.

The proposed law was first discussed in the Public Service Committee. Young is not a member of the Public Service Committee but he was given an opportunity to voice his concerns.

The Public Service Committee unanimously recommended approving a public hearing on the proposed law.

The Ways and Means Committee met immediately after the first meeting. Young does serve on that committee and Ways and Means was also asked to vote on approval of a public hearing.

Young again raised objections to the proposed law, which prompted another discussion.

There isn't a need for the law, Young suggested, because Pawn King is already entering its transactions in LeadsOnline. Young said he spoke with the manager of the local Pawn King.

"It’s not true," Walker said. "He may say that but he’s not doing it."

During Public Service, Friedman hinted but didn't outright say, that Pawn King conducts some transactions after regular business hours.

Young voted no to send the proposed law to a public hearing. He thinks the bill should go back to the lawyers to clarify key points.

"There are too many unanswered questions," he said.

Chairwoman Marianne Clattenburg suggested that the bill could go to public hearing and the Legislature could then better determine how to amend the law after hearing from the public.

Ways and Means approved sending the proposed law to a public hearing on a 4-1 vote.

Much of Young's objection to the proposed law is that it creates a new regulatory scheme for businesses, which he thinks runs counter to the county's effort to try and attract new business.

"This is an unprecedented law in this county," Young said. "In this county, we don't have too many local laws and they've usually been reserved for things that are really important. Monroe County has a different governing body and they think differently than ours, but we're taking one of their laws and making it even more restrictive."

Young argued that the problem in Genesee County doesn't rise to the level of passing new laws.

Friedman said there is a pressing need for the law.

“I have to disagree with the statement that there is no problem here," Friedman said. "There is absolutely a problem here.”

Photo: Public Service Committee meeting.

November 20, 2018 - 2:12pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in Le Roy, crime, news.

A Le Roy police officer has just taken a subject in custody in the woods behind Tops Market after a struggle that included two taser deployments.

During the struggle, the officer radioed for backup. There was no backup on scene during the struggle.

"Two taser deployments and he's still fighting," the officer said at one point.

The subject is now in custody. We don't know why the subject was pursued.

Another suspect was already in custody in the officer's patrol car parked in front of Tops.

An ambulance is requested to the scene.

Backup is arriving on scene from Le Roy PD, State Police, and the Sheriff's Office.

UPDATE 2:20 p.m.: Communications for this incident have been switched to the LE Secure channel.

November 17, 2018 - 9:56am
posted by Howard B. Owens in crime, batavia, news, notify.
malikayla2018.jpg teeseanayala2018.jpg
Malik Ayala TeeSean Ayala

A pair of brothers from Batavia are suspects in a string of burglaries in Batavia and Stafford, including one who was stopped Thursday night on Washington Avenue and allegedly found in possession of a stolen handgun. 

The handgun was allegedly taken in one of the burglaries and after the burglary, the serial number had been partially removed.

TeeSean T. Ayala, 19, of Walnut Street, Batavia, was reportedly driving the car stopped by Investigator Chris Parker on Thursday night on Washington Avenue. Parker recognized the vehicle as possibly linked to the string of burglaries.

The driver of the vehicle pulled into the driveway of a residence on Washington Avenue -- by coincidence, the home of County Manager Jay Gsell -- and somebody in the vehicle threw the handgun out the window.

The appearance of a gun prompted a multi-patrol response from local law enforcement.

Ayala, a former standout basketball player at Batavia High School, is charged with criminal possession of a weapon, 2nd, criminal possession a weapon, 3rd, unlawful possession of marijuana, and plate obstructed.

His brother, Malik Isiah Ayala, 27, of Walnut Street, Batavia, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property.

Malik Ayala is accused of being in possession of stolen property at Pawn King on Oct. 24 valued in excess of $3,000.

Chief Deputy Jerome Brewster said both arrests are the result of an investigation into burglaries that occurred in the City of Batavia, Town of Batavia, and Stafford. 

In all, at least five burglaries are believed to be connected to the same suspects, Brewster said.

TeeSean Ayala was ordered held on $15,000 bail. Malik Ayala's bail was set at $20,000 cash or $40,000 bond.

Brewster said the investigation is ongoing and additional charges are possible.

November 16, 2018 - 1:15pm
posted by Billie Owens in news, notify, Grand Jury, Darien, batavia, Stafford, crime.

Constantine D. Murrell is indicted for the crime of second-degree robbery, a Class C violent felony. It is alleged that on Sept. 25 at the Kwik-Fill gas station/convenience store at the intersection of Ellicott and Jackson streets in the City of Batavia that Murrell forcibly stole a 2008 automobile. In count two, he is accused of second-degree assault, a Class D violent felony. It is alleged in count two that during the commission or attempted commission of the aforementioned felony that he cause physical injury to a person. in count three, he is accused of reckless driving, a misdemeanor, for driving the 2008 vehicle in a manner that interfered with the free and proper use of the roadways and/or unreasonably endangered users of those roadways. In count four, Murrell is accused of unlawful lfeeing a police officer in a motor vehicle in the third degree, a Class A misdemeanor. It is alleged in count four that he attempted to flee an officer, knowing that he had been directed to stop, and that his speeds equaled or exceeded 25 miles per hour above the speed limit or he engaged in reckless driving.

Dylan J. Perry is indicted for the crime of third-degree burglary, a Class D felony. It is alleged that between Dec. 1 and Dec. 2 he knowingly entered and remained unlawfully in a building located on Broadway Road in the Town of Darien with intent to commit a crime. In count two, Perry is accused of petit larceny, a Class A misdemeanor. It is alleged in count two that Perry stole $300 in U.S. currency and a pair of work boots while inside the property on Broadway Road.

Antonio J. Goodson is indicted for the crime of criminal contempt in the first degree, a Class E felony. It is alleged that on Aug. 22 in the City of Batavia that he violated a duly served order of protection by being in the presence of the protected party. In Special Information filed by the District Attorney, Goodson is accused of having been convicted of criminal contempt in the second degree, a Class A misdemeanor, on Jan. 19 in City of Rochester Court. That conviction was for a violation of a stay away family offense order of protection and was within five years of the crime alleged in the current indictment.

Thomas J. Claffey is indicted for the crime of driving while ability impaired by drugs, as a Class E felony. It is alleged that on June 18 in the Town of Stafford that he drove a 2016 Chevrolet on Route 33 while his ability to do so was impaired by use of a drug. In Special Information filed by the District Attorney's Office, Claffey is accused of having been convicted for DWI, as a misdemeanor, on July 28, 2008, in Town of Irondequoit, and that conviction was within 10 years of the crime alleged in the current indictment.

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