City of Batavia Police Department https://www.thebatavian.com/ en https://www.thebatavian.com/themes/barrio_batavian/images/thebatavian_logo.png City of Batavia Police Department https://www.thebatavian.com/ Local Matters © 2008-2023 The Batavian. All Rights Reserved. Mon, 26 Feb 2024 12:07:47 -0500 https://www.thebatavian.com/themes/barrio_batavian/images/thebatavian_logo.png Fri, 24 Feb 2023 12:48:00 -0500 Batavia superintendent issues message of safety to community https://www.thebatavian.com/joanne-beck/batavia-superintendent-issues-message-of-safety-to-community/627722 Superintendent Jason Smith issued the following statement to the city school district Friday morning in response to a potential threat made to John Kennedy Intermediate School. The threat was found not to be credible, per Batavia Police Chief Shawn Heubusch after an investigation by local law enforcement.

To Our BCSD Community, 

This morning, the Batavia Police Department received a call from an unknown person who was making threats against John Kennedy Intermediate. The Batavia Police Department, New York State Police, and Genesee County Sheriff immediately responded to John Kennedy to investigate, and they found no evidence of a credible threat. 

As an additional precaution, patrol units were sent to all BCSD schools to do a safety check.

BCSD is currently on February recess, and only a small number of staff members were present during the on-site investigation. No students were in the building at the time of the incident. 

While no credible threat has been found, the Batavia Police Department is continuing its investigation.

All sports practices, events, and club activities will continue as planned throughout the weekend, and BCSD will have increased police presence as a safety precaution. 

We will keep you informed as additional information becomes available. We thank the Batavia Police Department, State Police, and Genesee County Sheriff’s Department for their swift response as well as our John Kennedy staff for their ongoing assistance and cooperation.

Jason Smith, Superintendent 

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https://www.thebatavian.com/joanne-beck/batavia-superintendent-issues-message-of-safety-to-community/627722#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/joanne-beck/batavia-superintendent-issues-message-of-safety-to-community/627722 Feb 24, 2023, 12:48pm City of Batavia Police Department Batavia superintendent issues message of safety to community jfbeck_99_272012 <p>Superintendent Jason Smith issued the following statement to the city school district Friday morning in response to a potential threat made to John Kennedy Intermediate School. The threat was found not to be credible, per <a href="https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/friday-morning-threat-against-john-kennedy-school-found-not-to-be-credible/627720">Batavia Police Chief Shawn Heubusch</a>&nbsp;after an investigation by&nbsp;local law enforcement.</p> <blockquote> <p>To Our BCSD Community,&nbsp;</p></blockquote>
City stabbing Tuesday night being investigated https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/city-stabbing-tuesday-night-being-investigated/620062 Press Release

At roughly 9:38 pm on Tuesday October 18th the City of Batavia Police Department, City of Batavia Fire Department and Mercy EMS were dispatched to Highland Park for a reported stabbing. Preliminary investigation reveals that the victim was stabbed somewhere on Jackson Street at roughly 9:30 pm.

The suspect is described as a black male wearing a white hooded sweatshirt. The victim was transported to a hospital where they are seeking medical treatment for their injuries.  Anyone with information is asked to contact the Batavia Police Department at (585)345-6350, the Batavia Police Department's confidential tip line at (585) 345-6370 or by clicking the tip button

No further details will be released at this time due to this being an ongoing investigation. 

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https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/city-stabbing-tuesday-night-being-investigated/620062#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/city-stabbing-tuesday-night-being-investigated/620062 Oct 19, 2022, 12:17am City of Batavia Police Department City stabbing Tuesday night being investigated Press Release <p>Press Release</p> <blockquote> <p>At roughly 9:38 pm on Tuesday October 18th the City of Batavia Police Department, City of Batavia Fire Department and Mercy EMS were dispatched to Highland Park&nbsp;for a reported stabbing.&nbsp;Preliminary investigation reveals that the victim was stabbed somewhere on Jackson Street&nbsp;at roughly 9:30 pm.</p> <p>The suspect is described</p></blockquote>
Reforming New York's bail reform laws: Desperately needed or a desperate attempt to win votes? https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/reforming-new-yorks-bail-reform-laws-desperately-needed-or-a-desperate-attempt-to Depending upon who you talk to, Gov. Kathy Hochul’s 10-point plan to revise New York’s bail reform statute is either a good first step toward granting judges more discretion in determining whether or not to impose bail for serious crimes or it’s simply a politically expedient move by someone looking to win an election in November.

In recent days, Hochul presented a comprehensive list of changes to the no-cash bail law, including, for the most serious felonies, allowing bail determinations to be informed by factors such as criminal history and history of firearm use and possession; making repeat offenses subject to arrest and posting of bail, and making some gun-related and hate crime offenses subject to arrest and incarceration (and not appearance tickets).

The proposal also is being made following the release of a Siena College poll indicating that two-thirds of New York voters are in favor of strengthening the no-cash bail law and giving judges the power to consider a defendant’s prior arrest record.

The Batavian reached out today to Genesee County attorneys and law enforcement personnel for their “takes” on the governor’s stance.

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Genesee County District Attorney Kevin Finnell says he hasn’t read the details of all of Hochul’s points, but for the primary one – allowing judges to consider additional information – he believes that is appropriate.

“That’s what the judges were able to do pre-bail reform,” he said. “And I think giving them that latitude and authority is good because they're the ones that see these people, they evaluate them on a case by case basis, and the judges do a good job in deciding who's a flight risk and who isn't. So, having that back in the judges’ hands is a good thing.”

Finnell said he also agrees with judges having the ability to set bail on repeat offenders.

“Again, using the same criteria, assuming that they can, allow the judges to do what they've always done in evaluating the case -- the person and the likelihood that they'll return rather than just going to the least restrictive form automatically,” he said.

“That may be appropriate in a lot of cases and the judges will be able to still release people to under supervision or ROR (released on your own recognizance) when the case is appropriate. But giving them the extra tool -- the extra ability to set bail when appropriate -- I think is always a good thing.”

Genesee County Public Defender Jerry Ader sees Hochul’s plan much differently, stating that politics are playing a key role.

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“I had hoped that the governor would have maintained her long standing position that any possible changes to the law as it related to bail would only be driven by data, not politics, and that gathering such data would take time,” he said. “Unfortunately, I am not shocked or surprised that political pressure has resulted in this new ‘re-election’10-point plan.  Maintaining power is powerful force.”

Ader pointed to The Brennan Center for Justice report, released yesterday, that “there is no clear connection between recent crime increases and the bail reform law enacted in 2019, and the data does not support further revisions to the legislation” (https://www.brennancenter.org/our-work/research-reports/facts-bail-reform-and-crime-rates-new-york-state).

“In our county, the bail laws presently in effect are working.  Money is no longer the driving factor as to whether someone charged with a crime is in jail.  Most people charged with violent felony offenses and many non-violent offenses can have bail set, if the court determines it to be necessary to insure the person appears,” he said. “If someone has been released, he can be remanded if he persistently fails to appear in court or is re-arrested for a felony.  There is no evidence that our county is any less safe.”

Ader acknowledged that gun violence is increasing, and he has “no problem with enacting new legislation or the state providing additional funding to help remove illegal weapons from our community. “

Calling Hochul’s plan “a step in the right direction,” Genesee County Sheriff William Sheron said that tougher gun laws are not the answer when dealing with the criminal element.

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“I firmly believe that they can pass all these gun laws that they want, but the prime definition of “criminal” means criminals do not follow laws,” he said. “So, you can pass all the gun control regulations you want, but those with criminal intent are not going to follow those laws. The ones that are really going to be affected are the law abiding citizens.”

Sheron said laws with more teeth need to be passed.

“We have got to have more of a deterrence out there,” he said. “If people possess illegal firearms, or use a firearm illegally, they’re going to suffer severe consequences and that is going to send the message to other people.”

The sheriff also said he’s on board with giving judges more discretion in the bail process to prevent instances of repeat offenses, something that he says have been on the rise and are endangering the public.

“One that comes to mind is where the individual was stealing motor vehicles from around the area,” he said. “We would catch them with one, and he’d go before a judge and get released. It wasn’t a bailable offense and he’d steal another car. It was just a vicious circle. I forget the total number of vehicles he stole, but he knew there was no chance he was going to jail, so it was a big game to him.”

Sheron said society has gotten away from the “standards of accountability.”

“People make mistakes, I get that, but there has to be a deterrence. Even with kids in school. They see there are no consequences to their misbehavior or their improper actions, and that leads to more improper actions.”

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Batavia City Police Chief Shawn Heubusch said he hopes “changes are meaningful and will address crime in our area.”

He said he stands with the New York State Association of Chiefs of Police, which issued a statement today contending that the state’s effort to correct “historic inequalities in the criminal justice system” … “tipped the balance so far in favor of the accused that public safety has been jeopardized.”

The statement continues, “We believe that it is possible to create a system in which the rights of the accused are respected while the rights of victims and the public are also respected. Public safety must be a priority. We look forward to working with Governor Hochul and the legislature to identify the proper path forward.”

Heubusch said that “one size fits all packages coming out of Albany do not work in every jurisdiction and do not address the impacts to our neighborhoods and communities.”

“We are hopeful that meaningful change will be implemented to aid us in protecting our citizens.”

Finnell said local justices are qualified to make proper judgments, as long as they are given the power to do so.

“I also think recognizing that not everybody should go to jail is important, too,” he said. “That's the other side of the coin. The purpose of bail is and always has been to ensure that somebody will appear for when required in in County Court. But we've seen that fail in many ways since bail reform.”

Ader stated that he agrees with the governor on her call for increased funding for pretrial, diversion, and employment programs and for mental health treatment.

“It would also help our community immensely if the non-monetary release option of electronic monitoring could be implemented in our county.  It is an option under the present law but has never been used in our county,” he said.

Overall, he thinks Hochul’s 10-point plan is a “knee-jerk political reaction” that moves the state back to a more subjective and repressive system of bail.

“It may make some people feel better, but that’s not the reason for legislation,” he said. “Laws and changes to them need to be driven by data and facts, not emotion.”

The 10-point plan, per a published report in the New York Post, includes:

  • For the most serious felonies, allow bail determinations to be informed by factors including criminal history and history of firearm use and possession. Judges will be allowed to set bail not based solely on the “least restrictive” conditions deemed necessary to ensure a return to court. The statute will set forth specific criteria on which judges will base their determinations, including criminal history and history of firearm use/possession.
  • Make repeat offenses subject to arrest and bail-eligible
  • Make certain gun-related offenses, hate crimes offenses, and subway crime offenses subject to arrest and not [desk appearance tickets]. Certain offenses which presently are subject to desk appearance tickets will be made only eligible for arrest.
  • Make certain gun-related offenses bail-eligible.
  • Make it easier to prosecute gun trafficking.
  • Targeted reforms of the discovery statute.
  • Targeted reforms of the “Raise the Age” statute.
  • Increase funding for pretrial, diversion, and employment programs: Hochul’s budget already includes $83.4 million for pretrial services, but the governor would increase that amount — although the memo did not say by how much. It would also distribute the nearly $500 million appropriated for “Raise the Age” implementation that has not yet been spent.
  • Expand involuntary commitment and Kendra’s Law.
  • Increase funding for mental health treatment.
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https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/reforming-new-yorks-bail-reform-laws-desperately-needed-or-a-desperate-attempt-to#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/reforming-new-yorks-bail-reform-laws-desperately-needed-or-a-desperate-attempt-to Mar 23, 2022, 4:52pm City of Batavia Police Department Reforming New York's bail reform laws: Desperately needed or a desperate attempt to win votes? mikepett <p>Depending upon who you talk to, Gov. Kathy Hochul’s 10-point plan to revise New York’s bail reform statute is either a good first step toward granting judges more discretion in determining whether or not to impose bail for serious crimes or it’s simply a politically expedient move by someone looking</p>
Attracting minority candidates, ongoing community dialogue top Batavia PD's list of 'action items' https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/attracting-minority-candidates-ongoing-community-dialogue-top-batavia-pds-list-of

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The City of Batavia Police Department is committed to implementing “action items” derived from its participation in the Batavia Police Advisory Collaboration Stakeholder Group, especially in the area of diversity in recruitment, BPD Police Chief Shawn Heubusch said on Monday night.

Speaking at City Council’s Business Meeting at the City Hall Council Board Room, Heubusch (photo at left) said his department embarked on a “heavy” recruiting campaign in an attempt to attract more minority candidates to take the police officer exam.

He said that data compiled through a questionnaire that was filled out by 90 of the 100 or so people that took the Civil Service exam on Sept. 18, 2021 showed that “a more diverse population came out to take our exam.”

While 84.4 percent of the participants identified themselves as White, 3.3 percent were Hispanic or Latino, 2.2 percent Black or African American, 1.1 percent Asian and 1.1 percent Native Hawaiian or Other Pacific Islander.

Heubusch said that the data collected will be used to establish a baseline for future exams.

The department also conducted a physical agility test last week at Genesee Community College, Heubusch said, where “we definitely saw a more diverse group of people come out for that.”

The Batavia Police Advisory Collaboration Stakeholder Group, consisting of citizens from various public and private sectors, was formed in compliance with former Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Executive Order 203 that called for community policing reform throughout New York.

It met several times during the fall and winter of 2020 and 2021, resulting in the creation of a list of action items that was submitted to Albany. Batavia’s plan is focused on training, community engagement/policing, community liaison, communication, officer wellness and diversity – including Civil Service reform.

“This (Civil Service reform) was a big nugget that everybody talked about across the state,” said Heubusch, who noted that he discussed that subject on a webinar yesterday with the New York State Police Chiefs Association. “(We) continue to advocate for Civil Service reform with elected officials and through professional organizations.”

Other highlights of Heubusch’s presentation to City Council:

  • Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance has decreased by 54 percent on average over the past five years. Crimes such as larceny and simple assault also declined in 2020 compared to 2019. However, Heubusch said, preliminary reports for 2021 indicate a slight increase in those numbers.
  • The BPD will continue community dialogue through neighborhood meetings and National Night Out. Heubusch said the department’s CrimeWatch page has resulted in enhanced communication with the public and includes a link to Division of Criminal Justice Services statistics.
  • The department’s community liaison program is multi-faceted, including regularly scheduling outings at senior citizen complexes and civic groups, continued engagement with minority groups, placement of a school resource officer at Batavia City School District (Officer Miah Stevens) and establishment of a Citizens Academy Program for interested adults. Heubusch also said plans include enrolling Stevens in the next DARE training class.
  • Community engagement/policing efforts include more foot and bicycle patrols, bicycle safety classes, enhanced training through an agreement with Genesee County Mental Health, crisis intervention training, ongoing implicit bias training, and certification of a de-escalation trainer and defensive tactics instructor.
  • Emphasis on physical, mental and spiritual wellness of police officers, with monthly briefings with the police chaplain, participation in wellness program training, debriefing efforts after critical incidents and regular meetings with supervisors to discuss any potential issues.
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https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/attracting-minority-candidates-ongoing-community-dialogue-top-batavia-pds-list-of#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/attracting-minority-candidates-ongoing-community-dialogue-top-batavia-pds-list-of Jan 11, 2022, 10:56am City of Batavia Police Department Attracting minority candidates, ongoing community dialogue top Batavia PD's list of 'action items' mikepett <p></p><div class="align-left"> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/users/129907/2022-01/heubusch_.jpg?itok=1yCFJJ7W" width="123" height="217" alt="heubusch_.jpg" class="image-style-large"> </div> </div> The City of Batavia Police Department is committed to implementing “action items” derived from its participation in the Batavia Police Advisory Collaboration Stakeholder Group, especially in the area of diversity in recruitment, BPD Police Chief Shawn Heubusch said on Monday night. <p>Speaking at City Council’s Business Meeting at the City</p>
City of Batavia Police Department makes two arrests connected to August incident on Otis Street https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/city-of-batavia-police-department-makes-two-arrests-connected-to-august-incident-on The City of Batavia Police Department has made two arrests connected to an incident brought to the attention of City Council by an Otis Street resident at the governing body’s Sept. 13 meeting.

“The arrests are the result of one of the incidents he (Ronald Yantz) spoke of at an earlier meeting,” Police Chief Shawn Heubusch confirmed to The Batavian.

Released today via its Crime Watch police blotter platform, Batavia PD reported the following arrests:

Brooke M. Ayala, 36, of Batavia, Endangering the welfare of a child, Criminal Nuisance, 11:28 PM, Monday, August 23, 2021, Otis Street. On 10/7/2021, Ayala was arrested on the above charges. The arrest comes after an investigation into an incident on 8/23/2021, on Otis Street. Ayala was issued an appearance ticket and is scheduled to appear in Batavia City Court on 10/19/2021.

Kelly L Wells, 57, of Batavia, Criminal Nuisance, 11:28 PM, Monday, August 23, 2021, Otis Street. On 10/7/2021, Wells was arrested on the above charge. The arrest comes after an investigation into an incident on 8/23/2021, on Otis Street. Wells was issued an appearance ticket and is scheduled to appear in Batavia City Court on 10/19/2021.

Yantz appeared at the City Council meeting to inform Council of ongoing unruly and disruptive behavior by people living in a house across the street from him on Otis Street.

At the time, Council President Eugene Jankowski Jr. said the police department and the code enforcement department would do all that was possible to rectify the situation, with Heubusch indicating that there was an open investigation and charges were pending.

At the Oct. 12 City Council meeting, Yantz returned, this time thanking the board and police department for their efforts as things have calmed down on that section of the street.

Previously: City of Batavia leaders, police taking steps to help Otis Street couple deal with disruptive neighbors

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https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/city-of-batavia-police-department-makes-two-arrests-connected-to-august-incident-on#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/city-of-batavia-police-department-makes-two-arrests-connected-to-august-incident-on Oct 18, 2021, 12:58pm City of Batavia Police Department City of Batavia Police Department makes two arrests connected to August incident on Otis Street mikepett <p>The City of Batavia Police Department has made two arrests connected to an incident brought to the attention of City Council by an Otis Street resident&nbsp;at the governing body’s Sept. 13 meeting.</p> <p>“The arrests are the result of one of the incidents he (Ronald Yantz) spoke of at an earlier</p>
BREAKING NEWS: Shots fired after vehicle stopped on Route 33, near Mill Road https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/breaking-news-shots-fired-after-vehicle-stopped-on-route-33-near-mill-road/571908 PUBLISHER'S NOTE:  During the course of events yesterday we had a technical issue with the website.  This caused us to copy the original post and headline and create a new post with the same information and then delete the old post.  When we did this, all the comments disappeared with the original post.  I just wanted readers to know that no comments were deliberately removed.

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A person is in custody after two shots were fired on Route 33 in the Town of Stafford, according to a report from Howard Owens, publisher of The Batavian, who is at the scene.

Owens reported at 6:12 p.m. that a silver Pontiac sedan was westbound into the City of Batavia on Route 33 and it was weaving.

Just after passing Mill Road, a Genesee County sheriff's deputy pulled the vehicle over and a black male driver got out of the car and ran across Route 33 into a corn field on the south side of the road.

About three or four minutes later, a shot was fired, Owens said, calling back to report that a second shot has been fired.

Two sheriff's deputies and a City of Batavia police officer are on the scene.

Updates:

UPDATE 11:57 p.m. (by Howard): Suspect in custody as of about 10 or 15 minutes ago.

UPDATE 9:36 p.m. (by Howard Owens):  At shortly before 6 p.m., while returning home from Rochester on Route 33, I noticed a silver Pontiac sedan weaving.  He crossed the center line and the fog line once each and then went straight for a while.  I didn't immediately call it in.  Then it weaved multiple times so at 6:04 p.m., I called dispatch completing the call as we approached Griswold Road.  A few seconds later, the car slowed to about 45 mph.  At Route 237 it slowed again.  Then about 1/4 of a mile later, it accelerated to 75 mph.  I called dispatch again.  As we approached Mill Road I spotted a deputy parked in a drive lane in a farm field on the right side of the road.  I slowed to allow him in behind the vehicle.  The vehicle pulled over as soon as the officer his emergency lights. I was not planning to stop but as soon as the Pontiac stopped, the driver bolted from the car.  He was a tall, thinnish, Black male dressed in all black. He ran in a laneway between rows of corn near where there is a corn-for-sale stand at the side of the road. The deputy pursued on foot but stopped when he got to the start of the cornfield and he drew his weapon.  I later heard him tell another officer that he had seen the man with a gun in his belt.  I walked back from the way we came (to me, it feels like north but I guess it's really east) to watch the open field on that end of the incident to see if I saw the man fleeing.  After a couple of minutes, I decided he was more likely to run toward the Thruway where there was more cover so I walked back to my car.  Just as I reached my car, I heard a gunshot.  I took cover behind my vehicle. I heard at least four more shots while in that position.  At that point, two deputies and a patrol vehicle pulled in behind my vehicle and asked me to get in the backseat of the patrol vehicle.  I did.  Then the female passenger from the sedan got in the back seat.  I asked her what was going on.  She said she didn't know and that she had just met the driver earlier today.  I was left with a Batavia police officer who was blocking traffic at Caswell and Route 33 until about 8:30 when the Sheriff's Office provided me a ride home.  The situation as far as I know remains unresolved.  I'm told not to  expect a press conference tonight.  Law enforcement is on a secure channel now so further updates are going to be difficult to obtain.

8:21 p.m. -- The New York State Thruway traffic is moving very slowly.

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Photo above taken at 7:55 p.m.

7:47 p.m. -- Situation continues as Monroe County Special Weapons and Tactics (SWAT) Team arrives.

7:35 p.m. -- Latest report from Owens: Monroe County Sheriff's Office drone operator is on the scene.

7:26 p.m. -- The New York State Police helicopter has arrived on the scene (photo below).

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7:17 p.m. -- Police are indicating that at least a dozen shots have been fired, all by the suspect. His location is believed to be in a wooded area behind a tree east of Mill Road near the New York State Thruway.

6:53 p.m. -- Genesee County's Emergency Response Team has been dispatched to the scene.

6:45 p.m. -- Owens reported that the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation officer has arrived with his K-9. He also said that a deputy reported that he saw a gun at the driver's waistline.

6:38 p.m. -- Police have ordered the scene to be evacuated, moving Owens east to Caswell Road. The driver of the car is still at large, with Owens indicating that all shots have been fired by the suspect.

6:30 p.m. -- A fourth shot has been fired. The person in custody is the female passenger in the car (photo above).

6:25 p.m. -- Multiple law enforcement vehicles are on the scene.

6:24 p.m. -- A third shot has been fired.

6:20 p.m. -- Route 33 is closed.

Photos by Howard Owens.

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https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/breaking-news-shots-fired-after-vehicle-stopped-on-route-33-near-mill-road/571908#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/breaking-news-shots-fired-after-vehicle-stopped-on-route-33-near-mill-road/571908 Sep 19, 2021, 6:23pm City of Batavia Police Department BREAKING NEWS: Shots fired after vehicle stopped on Route 33, near Mill Road mikepett <p><em>PUBLISHER'S NOTE:&nbsp; During the course of events yesterday we had a technical issue with the website.&nbsp; This caused us to copy the original post and headline and create a new post with the same information and then delete the old post.&nbsp; When we did this, all the comments disappeared with</em></p>
City police department hosts annual Community Night Out Aug. 10 at St. Anthony's on Liberty Street https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/city-police-department-hosts-annual-community-night-out-aug-10-at-st-anthonys-on From BPD:

The City of Batavia Police Department will host the annual Community Night Out from 5:30 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 10, at City Church's St. Anthony's campus, located at 114 Liberty St. in Batavia.

Expect free food, a bounce house, games, horses (horses, of course), vendors, "& more!"

If you want more information about how to become a sponsor or have a booth at the event, contact Detective Wojtaszczyk at:  mwojtaszczyk@batavianewyork.com

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https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/city-police-department-hosts-annual-community-night-out-aug-10-at-st-anthonys-on#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/city-police-department-hosts-annual-community-night-out-aug-10-at-st-anthonys-on Jul 16, 2021, 12:32pm City of Batavia Police Department City police department hosts annual Community Night Out Aug. 10 at St. Anthony's on Liberty Street Press Release <p><em>From BPD:</em></p> <p>The City of Batavia Police Department will host the annual Community Night Out from 5:30 to 8 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 10, at City Church's St. Anthony's campus, located at 114 Liberty St. in Batavia.</p> <p>Expect free food, a bounce house, games, horses (<em>horses, of course</em>),&nbsp;vendors</p>
'It's horrible.' City resident seeks police intervention to end criminal activity around Washington Avenue https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/its-horrible-city-resident-seeks-police-intervention-to-end-criminal-activity-around
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There’s some serious stuff going on around Washington Avenue, Willow Street and State Street -- and at least one resident is imploring City Council to do something about it.

“I’m just here tonight because I’m concerned about the neighborhood,” said Lynne Geissler, (in photo at top), noting that she has lived at Washington and Willow for four years. “I understand that it’s a different neighborhood.”

Geissler, speaking during the public comments portion of tonight’s Conference Meeting at City Centre Council Board Room, mentioned the increase in “criminal action,” adding that it is “horrible” and is taking place at all hours of the night, causing her to lose sleep.

“There’s got to be some way that … I don’t know,” she said. “I was going to go to the police department to talk to the police chief but they’re not letting anybody in (or so she believed). So, I figured I’d come down here to talk, to see, because there’s a lot of things going on and it has to be taken care of.”

She brought up that she has health issues and understands that drugs and mental disorders are real problems.

“But when you’re having the police at your house 20 times in a four-day period, and our landlord can’t do anything (and) we as tenants can’t do anything,” she said. “There’s got to be some way – CPS (Child Protective Services), there’s mental health, everybody’s involved but nothing’s getting fixed.”

Jankowski advised her to talk with Police Chief Shawn Heubusch directly after the meeting and set up an appointment.

Council Member Kathleen Briggs said that she has received calls from people living on State Street “and they’re telling me that they do call police and police are responding.”

“I also told them that they should contact their landlords and they said the landlords aren’t doing anything,” she added. “Police are doing what they can but don’t you think we have to hold these landlords accountable?”

It was mentioned that these instigators should be evicted, but current laws against eviction have tied landlords’ hands.

Geissler said her landlord is sympathetic but indicated that “if he went to evict someone right now – if it was one of his houses – it would be nine to 12 months before that person would be out.”

Afterward, Heubusch acknowledged that officers are dealing with "some serious things" and, without getting into details, said that investigations are ongoing.

“We will look into this further,” he said.

BOYD RESUMES DISC GOLF PITCH

Last month, city resident Phillip Boyd came to a City Council meeting to promote the placement of a disc golf course at a city park.

He reappeared tonight, flanked by six other disc golf enthusiasts, and said he has mapped out a course that would take up about two-thirds of Centennial Park, the 14-acre natural setting located in the north-central part of the city.

Boyd said he also has prices for how much sponsorship would cost.

“Now, I’m just looking for it to be actually brought up as an agenda item,” he said.

With that, City Council President Eugene Jankowski advised him to turn all his documents over to City Manager Rachael Tabelski and work with her going forward.

Two of his friends, Doug Forsyth and Louis Ortiz, also went up to the podium, speaking briefly while indicating that they backed Boyd’s efforts.

Forsyth said he heard about the matter from reading The Batavian and wanted to let Council know that his group has secured some funding for the initiative.

Tabelski said Centennial Park is the preferred location. She added that she will review Boyd’s proposal with department heads with the expectation of providing a recommendation to Council at the July 12 meeting.

In legislative matters, Council approved:

  • A resolution to apply for a Community Development Block Grant to help fund an estimated $1.36 million project to replace 4- and 6-inch water lines on Jackson Street with 2,250 linear feet of 8-inch water main, and another setting a public hearing on the matter for 7 p.m. July 12. Tabelski said she thinks the grant, if received, could fund up to 90 percent of the project cost.
  • A resolution to award V.J. Gautieri Constructors $18,800 from the city’s Revolving Loan Fund Grant to help replace sidewalks at the Ellicott Place project at 45-47 Ellicott St. (Save-A-Lot building).
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https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/its-horrible-city-resident-seeks-police-intervention-to-end-criminal-activity-around#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/its-horrible-city-resident-seeks-police-intervention-to-end-criminal-activity-around Jun 28, 2021, 9:26pm City of Batavia Police Department 'It's horrible.' City resident seeks police intervention to end criminal activity around Washington Avenue mikepett <p><div> <div class="field field--name-field-media-image field--type-image field--label-hidden field__item"> <img loading="lazy" src="https://www.thebatavian.com/sites/default/files/styles/large/public/users/129907/2021-06/geissler_2.jpg?itok=QyP_7nMR" width="460" height="210" alt="geissler_2.jpg" class="image-style-large"> </div> </div> </p> <p>There’s some serious stuff going on around Washington Avenue, Willow Street and State Street -- and at least one resident is imploring City Council to do something about it.</p> <p>“I’m just here tonight because I’m concerned about the neighborhood,” said Lynne Geissler, <em>(in photo at top),&nbsp;</em>noting that she has</p>
City of Batavia police reform plan issued for public comment https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/city-of-batavia-police-reform-plan-issued-for-public-comment/563338 Press release:

Following the completion of the DRAFT City of Batavia Police Reform Plan it was presented to City Council for their input and subsequently made available to the public for further input.

The City has created a feedback form on the City’s website to receive written comments. The Plan and form can be located here:

https://www.batavianewyork.com/police-department/webforms/city-of-batavia-police-reform-plan

Please take the time to review the Plan and submit your comments as they relate directly to the plan.

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https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/city-of-batavia-police-reform-plan-issued-for-public-comment/563338#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/press-release/city-of-batavia-police-reform-plan-issued-for-public-comment/563338 Feb 3, 2021, 3:33pm City of Batavia Police Department City of Batavia police reform plan issued for public comment Press Release <p><em>Press release:</em></p> <p>Following the completion of the DRAFT City of Batavia Police Reform Plan it was presented to City Council for their input and subsequently made available to the public for further input.</p> <p>The City has created a feedback form on the City’s website to receive written comments. The Plan</p>
Positive community perception, establishment of minority focus group highlight police chief's presentation https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/positive-community-perception-establishment-of-minority-focus-group-highlight-police City of Batavia Police Chief Shawn Heubusch said he is encouraged by the results of a survey designed to gauge the community’s perception of his department and is looking forward to expanding the work of the Batavia Police Collaboration Advisory Stakeholder Group.

Speaking at Monday night’s City Council meeting, Heubusch shared highlights of the draft report generated as a result of seven meetings of the advisory group, which was formed last summer in response to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Executive Order No. 203 on community policing reform.

The draft of the plan, which ultimately will be submitted to the New York State Office of Management and Budget, will be available for public viewing and input on the City of Batavia’s website for about 30 days. Council is expected to consider the plan, including any updates, at its March 8 Business meeting.

Heubusch said he felt “very proud” about the response to the survey question, “When I seen an officer how do I feel?,” as the overwhelming majority indicated that seeing an officer made them feel safer and that they would be treated fairly.

He said the 14-question survey drew 828 responses, with 77 percent of the respondents stating that they lived in Batavia and 87 percent indicating that they were white. Fifty-eight percent were over the age of 45 and 56 percent were female.

The chief also said it was “very reassuring” that 81 percent of the respondents said that their opinion of the Batavia PD has not changed because of national events.

“Remember, when we started this it was right after all of the tumultuous activity that took place across the country,” Heubusch said.

He also pointed out that 80 percent said officers acted professionally/very professionally during an interaction, with 7 percent offering no opinion and 3 percent stating officers were unprofessional/very unprofessional.

“Eight respondents said their last interaction was due to an arrest and five of those respondents indicated the department was professional or very professional,” he added.

Concerning recommendations going forward, Heubusch said the top two answers to the question, “What should the Batavia PD do?” were to provide more training and resources for the officers on bias based policing and do more to address vehicle and pedestrian safety.

“Number two was to assign more resources to assist those with substance abuse issues, number three was to assign more resources to assist youth and number four was to engage more with the community,” he reported.

Heubusch said he is especially pleased with the fact that a focus group of minority residents has been established and will continue to meet on a regular basis.

“We had one meeting and it was extremely productive, and we are committed to continuing (open dialogue), he said, noting that several members of the minority community were part of the 28-member advisory group.

He said the committee learned about policies, procedures and training, including use of force, bias based policing, basic course for police, Article 35, body worn cameras and de-escalation training.

“With Article 35, once we placed someone under arrest, they can’t resist,” Heubusch said. “It was actually kind of an eye-opening moment for us. Several people in the group didn’t realize that when a police officer says you’re under arrest, that was it.”

Heubusch outlined other areas that the agency plans to begin or re-emphasize:

  • Trainings such as implicit bias and de-escalation, as well as mental health and crisis intervention.

“We plan to collaborate more with Genesee County Mental Health and there also is a larger discussion with other law enforcement agencies for some type of response service,” he said.

  • Community Engagement/Community Policing, including more foot and bicycle patrols, and establishing a community liaison service.
  • Transparency/data sharing, specifically posting Department of Criminal Justice reports on the city’s website and starting a Crime Watch program on social media to “get information out in a much smoother fashion than our current website.”
  • Accreditation, with the hope of initial accreditation later this year and then reaccreditation every three to five years.
  • Civil Service reform, with the goal of revamping a system that Heubusch said is antiquated.

“It doesn’t allow you to hire the best candidate at times, unfortunately,” he said, adding that there is a discussion across the state to reform the Civil Service hiring process. He added that the department is committed to hiring local candidates.

  • Special programs: specifically contracting with the Batavia City School District for a school resource officer; having a DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) officer in schools; starting a citizens’ police academy and an officer wellness program.

Heubusch said it is a priority to continue to participate in National Night Out and as many other city and private outreach events as possible.

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https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/positive-community-perception-establishment-of-minority-focus-group-highlight-police#comments https://www.thebatavian.com/mike-pettinella/positive-community-perception-establishment-of-minority-focus-group-highlight-police Jan 27, 2021, 11:13am City of Batavia Police Department Positive community perception, establishment of minority focus group highlight police chief's presentation mikepett <p>City of Batavia Police Chief Shawn Heubusch said he is encouraged by the results of a survey designed to gauge the community’s perception of his department and is looking forward to expanding the work of the Batavia Police Collaboration Advisory Stakeholder Group.</p> <p>Speaking at Monday night’s City Council meeting, Heubusch</p>