News Headlines for Wed., Aug. 31, 2016

Boater on Chautauqua Lake being treated after suffering burns during mishap...
A man boating on Chautauqua Lake was hurt early yesterday afternoon when he was sprayed with hot anti-freeze while trying to fix a problem on his vessel.  Sheriff's deputies say members of their Navigation Team were called to the scene about 12 Noon after the 19-foot long '4 Winn's' boat experienced an overheated engine.  Officers say the unidentified man tried to fix the problem... and, while doing so removed radiator cap... and, was sprayed with the hot liquid.  Deputies say the victim suffered multiple burns on his back, arms, and face.  The Navigation Team responded to the scene and provided first aid.  Bemus Point Fire rescuers were also contacted... and, responded.  The victim was taken to WCA Hospital for further treatment.
 
 
International Overdose Awareness Day event being held in Lakewood today...
Today is International Overdose Awareness Day... and, for the first time... an event will take place here in the Jamestown-area.  Ian Eastman of Evergreen Health says International Overdose Awareness Day originated in 2001 in Australia... but, this is the first time a Chautauqua County event is being held.  It begins at 6 p.m. at the Chautauqua Mall in Lakewood.  Eastman says the local program was prompted by discovery that drug overdoses have now become the second-leading cause of accidental death in the U.S.  The program in Lakewood will feature a number of speakers from different parts of the community.  Eastman says they include Dr. Robert Berke with Family Health Medical Services... and, Jamestown Police Chief Harry Snellings.  Those attending will also be offered free Narcan training.  Those interested in the training should pre-register by calling 541-0678.
 
 
New buyer found for Empire Specialty Cheese, announcement is planned for late September...
A new owner will be introduced during a press conference next month at an Ashville-area cheese factory with the expectation that the current operation will be expanded.  Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan says the county's Industrial Development Agency has been working for some time to find a new buyer for Empire Specialty Cheese... which had fallen on hard times in recent months after initially growing to 95 employees.  Horrigan says it became a matter of not enough cash coming in to cover the inventory.  He says Empire had been able to build up a good customer base, but, needed more cash coming in.  Horrigan says Empire tried to go from a small facility in Conewango Valley to a large one that employed about 200 people.  But... just recently... IDA Executive Director Kevin Sanvidge said that Empire was "out of money..." and, looking at bankruptcy if a new buyer wasn't found.  Horrigan says officials for the new company... which will be identifed during a Sept. 20 press conference... had been looking for this kind of situation.  Empire brought the former AFA Foods facililty in Ashville in 2013.
 
 
Downtown Jamestown ice arena now named "Northwest Arena..."
A re-branding of Northwest Savings Bank involving it's former Jamestown Savings Bank division... has led to a new name for the downtown ice arena.  That from Arena General Manager Craig Hinderleider... who says the facility's new name of "Northwest Arena" was completed last weekend.  Hinderleider says it's been a "great experience" to retain the Northwest brand on the arena on West Third Street.  He says all the bank branches have now been re-branded, and he says Northwest has considered them like "one of their branches."  Hinderleider says the transformation has actually been discussed for a few years now... with the first step being the renaming of the former Jamestown Savings Banks to the Northwest Brand.  He says a more formal event to rename the arena will take place in late September... and, they'll go full-speed in promoting the new name.  Northwest Savings Bank... based out of Warren, Pennsylvania... acquired Jamestown Savings Bank and it's branch offices in 1998. 
 
 
New York expanding it's Medical Marijuana program...
New York is expanding its medical marijuana program.  The state's Department of Health says Tuesday that it will soon allow nurse practitioners to authorize the drug for patients, and allow dispensaries to make deliveries to help patients who cannot leave their homes.  Additionally... the state will consider whether to make chronic pain a condition eligible for marijuana, and begin plans for more dispensaries around the state.  State Health Commissioner Howard Zucker says more than 7,000 New Yorkers have been authorized for medical marijuana since the program began in January.  He says the state will continue to look for ways to improve the program for patients and practioners.  
 
 

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Firefighters in Warren, Pennsylvania were busy fighting two fires less than two hours apart on Sunday.  The Warren Times Observer reports that the first call was to a structure fire at 315 Morrison Street.  Fire Crews were still at that fire when the call came in for another house fire at 17 Conewango Avenue just before 2pm.  Both fires caused extensive damage to the homes.  Heat was a major problem for firefighters as they battled the blazes.  One firefighter needed stitches to his lip, no other injuries were reported.  The City of Warren Fire Department was assisted by: North Warren, Pleasant, Starbrick, Clarendon, Russell, Sugar Grove, Youngsville, Glade, Sheffield, and City of Warren Police. No Cause has been given for either fire, a State Police Fire Marshall will visit the sites today. The Red Cross provided one hundred hamburgers, water and ice to firefighters on the scenes.


For the final time in the current Amphitheater... for the final time in his presidency, Tom Becker has brought the Chautauqua Instituion season to a close with the traditional three taps of the gavel.  Becker spoke Sunday night about some of the highlights of the 2016 season, and reflected on his 30 plus years at Chautauqua... 13 of them as president. Becker will leave his post at the end of 2016.  Work to remove the current Amphitheater will begin today.
Becker spoke at the final Sacred Song Service of the summer... usually attended by several hundred people.  A crowd of around 1500 gathered for this year's event.  As people left, they were offered a small vial of sawdust from an old Amphitheater bench as a keepsake.


Two people were hurt... but, not seriously... in a one-car crash on Route 394 in the town of Poland late last Saturday night.  Sheriff's officers were called to the scene just after 11 PM... and, found that the driver of the vehicle, 21 year-old Jace Warner of Sinclairiville, was eastbound when he apparently fell asleep at the wheel.  Deputies say the car then crossed into the westbound lane, and wound up crashing into a ditch.  Officers say Warner and his passenger, 22 year-old Stevie Provorse of Conewango Valley. were both taken to WCA Hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.  Warner was issued traffic tickets from Poland Town Court for failure to keep right and unsafe/illegal tires.

 

Two Jamestown residents have been arrested for allegedly being found with hypodermic needles in their possession during a traffic stop on Route 60 in the town of Charlotte.  Sheriff's officers say they pulled over a car, driven by 29 year-old Randy Rasmussen, shortly after Midnight Friday for allegedly speeding.  Deputies say they then found Rasmussen and his passenger, 26 year-old Andi Rasmussen were found in possession of the needles with no lawful purpose.  Officers say both were issued appearance tickets for criminally possessing a hypodermic instrument for Charlotte Town Court at a later date.

 

They've already been sharing some services... and, sports teams.  However... it's time for the Clymer and Panama Central School Districts to begin looking at a possible merger.  That from the "shared" Superintendent of both districts for the past three years, Bert Lictus.  Lictus says both school boards agreed during a recent, joint meeting, to begin a merger study involving the two.  He says members of both boards believe it's the right time to take a look. Lictus says the biggest factor both district's are looking at is the loss of enrollment... and, of educational opportunity for their students.  He says Panama has had huge losses in recent years... going from 11-hundred-50 students in 1998 to just 460 last year.  Lictus... who is originally from Clymer... says the loses there happened sooner.  He says he was one of 65 people who graduated from there in 1978... but, the number had dropped to 23 last year.  Lictus says he expects the merger study to take about 13 to 16 months.

 

New York state lawmakers passed fewer bills during the 2016 session than in past year, continuing a trend in recent years.  This year 618 pieces of legislation passed the full Legislature before lawmakers adjourned in June.  In 2015... they passed 718 bills.  The data comes from an analysis released Friday by the New York Public Interest Research Group, which examined the results of the legislative session following its adjournment.  While the number of bills passed each year has varied widely in past decades, the number has trended downward in the past several years.  One explanation is that lawmakers now often insert various policy measures into the budget, avoiding the need for many pieces of separate legislation.

 

Last week's announcement that Fieldbrook Foods in Dunkirk is adding 50 full-time jobs may be an indication of coming attractions.  The north county company’s President and Chief Executive Officer Robert Charleston, says it's been a great year for the company helped by strong ice cream sales. Charleston says he is very excited about the company's future... and, the plans that may be in the works.  He says they are looking into financial assistance to help with a potential expansion of their facility.  The 50 jobs announced on Wednesday are not tied to any new project and will be added to the current workforce that totals nearly 500 full-time employees.  Fieldbrook Foods is owned by Arbor Investments based in Chicago. 

 

The Food and Drug Administration wants all U.S. blood banks to start screening for Zika virus, a major expansion intended to protect the nation's blood supply from the mosquito-borne disease.  The new advisory means all U.S. states and territories will need to begin testing blood donations for Zika.  Previously, the requirement was limited to areas with active Zika transmission, such as Puerto Rico and two Florida counties.  Blood banks already test donations for HIV, hepatitis, West Nile virus and other blood-borne viruses.  Last month... the FDA told blood centers in Miami and Fort Lauderdale to immediately stop collecting donations until they could begin screening each unit of blood for Zika.  The order followed now-confirmed reports of local Zika transmission - the first in the continental U.S.

 

Freshman U-S Senator Pat Toomey is the rare conservative Republican who's running for re-election with the support of gun-control activists... including billionaire Michael Bloomberg.  Toomey has separated himself from most GOP Senate colleagues by refusing to endorse Donald Trump.  Meanwhile, he's facing questions from skeptical Republicans over his votes to expand background checks.  His stance so angered gun-rights group the American Gun Owners Alliance that they plan to back his Democratic opponent, Katie McGinty, to send a message to Republicans who deviate from orthodoxy on guns.  Toomey points to his support for various gun-rights causes.  But... he also says he doesn't see a conflict between the right to own a gun and a background check.

 

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News Headlines for Sat.-Sun., Aug 27-28, 2016

Reed hears from about two-dozen people during Opioid Abuse Roundtable in Jamestown...
Chautauqua County's representative in Congress heard Friday afternoon from people involved directly with the battle against drug addiction across the region.  About two-dozen local officials, prosecutors, law enforcement officials, and the families of overdose victims took part in a Opioid Abuse Roundtable at the Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County with Corning Republican Tom Reed.  Reed has already held a few roundtables across his district... but, this was the first in the Jamestown-area.  He says "communication is two-ways..." and you "need to hear from people" in tackling this issue.  Reed says it was also important to hear what constitutents have to say about the recently signed Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act of 2016.  President Obama signed the measure earlier this year in response to the nationwide Heroin and Opioid epidemic.  Reed says it was equally important to hear from the parents of two overdose victims who were at the roundtable.  Reed says law enforcement officials... including Jamestown Police Chief Harry Snellings and Assistant Chautauqua County District Attorney John Zuroski... urged federal lawmakers not to eliminate part of the penal code that deals with drug dealers.  He says mid and higher level dealers are very aware of the law... and, ways to get around it.
 
 
Gowanda man arrested for allegedly accepting Marijuana shipments in the mail...
A Gowanda man who was allegedly receiving marijuana through the mail to sell on the street is free on bail pending future court action.  Gowanda Police say they... and, members of the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force... arrested 36 year-old Charles Smith of West Main Street as part of an on-going investigation.  Police say they -- and other agencies -- executed a search warrant at the Can Do Bottle Redemption Center at 185 Buffalo St.  They say they have evidence that the marijuana was being delivered to that location under the name of his deceased borther from out-of-state.  Police recovered a package containing 3.5-pounds of marijuana, and $2,300 dollars cash.  Smith was arraigned on one count of second-degree criminal possession of marijuana... a Felony, and jailed on $1,500 bail.  Police say the investigation is continuing.
 
 
Two hurt, but not seriously, in one-car accident in Poland...
Two people were hurt... but, not seriously... in a one-car crash on Route 394 in the town of Poland late last Saturday night.  Sheriff's officers were called to the scene just after 11 p.m., and, found that the driver of the vehicle, 21 year-old Jace Warner of Sinclairiville, was eastbound when he apparently fell asleep at the wheel.  Deputies say the car then crossed into the westbound lane, and wound up crashing into a ditch.  Officers say Warner and his passenger, 22 year-old Stevie Provorse of Conewango Valley. were both taken to WCA Hospital for treatment of non-life threatening injuries.  Warner was issued traffic tickets from Poland Town Court for failure to keep right and unsafe/illegal tires.
 
 
Weather Service says August on pace to set new record for warmest ever...
Western New York is on it's way to it's hottest August ever... as well as one of it's hottest Summer's ever.  That from Forecaster Steve Welch with the National Weather Service in Buffalo.  Welch says the city of Buffalo itself is well above the August record already with just a few days left in the month.  He says the current average is  76.0-degrees... while the record in 1947 was 75.2-degrees.  However... Welch says it's much less likely that this will become the hottest month ever on record... but, he says July of 1947 was 76.2-degrees, and it doesn't look like we'll get that hot before the end of the month.  There's been a lot of discussion about whether this may be the hottest Summer of all-time in Western New York... and, Welch says... it'll be close.  At this point... he says we are looking at one of the top-5 hottest Summers ever... and potentially the second-warmest.  The previous warmest was in 2005 when the average temperature was 73.2-degrees.  The weather forecasts for the next few days... though the end of August... show daily highs in the low to mid-80s... and overnight lows of 65 to 70.  He says that should assure the August record.
 
 
Chautauqua Amp. project to resume on Monday after conclusion of 2016 season...
The 2016 season at Chautauqua Institution wraps up this weekend... and, plans call for construction work to resume immediately on Monday on the "renewed" or new Amphitheater.  Chautauqua's Vice-President and Chief Marketing Officer George Murphy says contruction crews will be back to work the day after the season comes to an end.  Murphy says crews will be facing an "aggressive" schedule... especially next May when lighting, rigging, and services are put in.  He says a lot of work was done prior to this season...which will help to allow crews to complete the project in time for the start of the 2017 season.  He says that includes a lot of the 'earth work...' and, getting foundations poured.  He says they dealt a lot with the current issue of the Amphitheater's "stability."  The current season will close with the "three taps of the gavel" on today.

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The Chautauqua County Legislature is accepting federal and state dollars for a major rehabilition project for the parking lot at the Greater Chautauqua-Jamestown Airport.  However... some lawmakers opposed the measure... saying they believe the state and federal government should be doing more for economic development in the county.  One in particular... Frewsburg Republican Ron Lemon... was critical of putting more money into the regional airport... when it doesn't get much passenger traffic. Lemon was one of four lawmakers who voted against the measure... while 13 voted for it at Wednesday night's meeting.  The county would have a local share of 21-thousand-296 dollars for the 851-thousand dollar project.  County Executive Vince Horrigan says he understands the frustration of some lawmakers... but, adds they want to give the new airline a fair chance... and, the parking lot needs upgrading.  Lemon specifically cited the loss of Keywell-Vac Air Alloys over the past year in the Frewsburg-area as being a source of his frustration.  However... Horrigan says New York state will "step up to the plate..." if there's interest in bringing new business in.

 

Fieldbrook Foods and the City of Dunkirk held a joint news conference this afternoon and announced the addition of 50 full-time positions at the plant.  Bob Charleston, Fieldbook Foods CEO, made the announcement at the plant located on Ice Cream Drive in the city. Charleston thanked the city for its cooperation along with the management team, the workers and the teamsters union.  Mayor Willie Rosas says city officials have been working closely with the company since he took office in January.  Rosas says he's had several meetings with Charleston over the past year.  He says many of the issues relate to the city's Wastewater Treatment Plant and some of the levels in regard to the company's permit.  He says both parties continue to work together in resolving any outstanding issues.  Charleston says he sees a "bright future" for the local facility, although he would not reveal any specifics about the company's future plans.  Fieldbrook Foods is adding the 50 jobs to the plant's 500 permanent jobs. State Senator Cathy Young is praising the announcement by Fieldbrook Foods.  Young says "I have been meeting with Fieldbrook Foods... and, it's great to see them growing the number of jobs.  Our goal is to continue to increase economic vitality in the region."  The Olean Republican says she's grateful to see the company investing in the community.

 

A judge says former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver can remain free until at least late October while he appeals his conviction and 12-year prison sentence.  Manhattan federal Judge Valerie Caproni issued an order Thursday.  The 72-year-old Democrat was convicted last year in a 5-million dollar corruption scandal.  Silver's lawyers say a U.S. Supreme Court ruling earlier this summer improves his chances on appeal.  It reversed the public corruption conviction of former Virginia Republican Gov. Robert McDonnell.  Caproni says Silver can remain free until at least Oct. 27 or until two weeks after a court rules on his request to remain free for the length of any appeal.

 

A program that is designed to train Chautauqua County Sheriff's officers to be Emergency Medical Technicians has resulted in six more members of the law enforcement agency becoming certified... including the sheriff himself.  Joe Gerace, three deputies, a deputy sergeant and a corrections sergeant completed the training and recently received their certification.  Gerace says the training is quite a lift, but it's well worth the effort. Gerace and Leone announced the program back in March.  Gerace says the Sheriff's Office now has 13 law enforcement EMTs who can respond to EMS calls throughout the county.  He believes its already making a difference.  Gerace says some of the new EMTs are also joining local fire departments.  He says the next phase of the program will begin next month when 19 academy recruits, and eight part-time deputies will start the Basic EMT Course through the Sheriff's Academy.  The Basic EMT Course has been added as a permanent component to the Sheriff's Academy curriculum. 

 

A national organization promoting September 11th as a day of public service and remembrance is asking presidential candidates to stop campaigning and running political ads on the 15th anniversary of the terror attacks.
 The New York-based nonprofit, "9/11 Day," has sent letters to Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump.  It's also urging people running for Congress to refrain from campaigning on September 11th.  The nonprofit's president and co-founder, David Paine, says a one-day campaign moratorium would help revive the spirit of national unity and empathy that followed the attacks.  Representatives for Trump and Clinton did not immediately say whether their candidates would agree to a campaign moratorium.  The organization made a similar request in 2012.  Both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama complied.

 

Final preparations have been made for the city of Jamestown's annual "End of Summer" bash.  The 37th annual Labor Day Festival will be held on Sunday, September 4th... featuring food, fun, and pro wrestling for the first time.  Mayor Sam Teresi urges residents to get to Bergman Park early that day to get a good spot for the fireworks at 8:30 PM.  Teresi says there are plenty of activites planned. The Labor Day Festival actually gets underway at 9:30 AM on Baker Street with the annual Dan Feather Memorial 5-K Run Walk.  Registration begins at 8 AM.  City Parks and Recreation Coordinator Julia Ciesla-Hanley says the Arts and Crafts booths open at 11 AM... and, the food vendors and other activities get underway at 12 Noon.  The wrestling program begins at 1 PM with Southern Tier Wrestling putting on the first-ever "Bergman Brawl" at the Babe Ruth Baseball Field.  Ciesla-Hanley says another new event... a cheerleading demonstration... will be put on by the XPlosion All-Stars at 3:30 PM at the Danielson Softball Field.  The Labor Day Festival will conclude with a huge fireworks display at 8:30 PM.

 

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News Headlines for Thurs., Aug. 25, 2016

Key figure in local cocaine trafficking-murder case, sentenced to life in prison...
One of the drug "kingpins" involved in a major cocaine trafficking operation in the Jamestown-area has been sentenced to life in prison for ordering the contract murder of a drug informant.  U-S Attorney William Hochul, Jr. announced late Wednesday that 47 year-old Jose "Noelle" Martinez, received the sentence in federal court in Buffalo from U-S District Court Judge William Skretny.  One of the prosecutors... Assistant U-S Attorney Thomas Duszkiewicz says... Martinez was afraid Quincy Turner was going to provide information in another drug operation... run by co-defendent Quentin Leeper.  He says Martinez believed that Turner was going to "snitch" on him regarding Leeper's part of the operation.  Prosecutors say Martinez ran a drug trafficking organization in Jamestown that handled 500 or more grams of cocaine.  They say evidence showed that Martinez also supplied cocaine to Leeper's organization in Jamestown.  In May of 2008... Martinez put out a contract for the killing of Quincy Turner.  They say Martinez had Turner killed on May 30 of that year outside of Turner's race shop near the Jamestown Airport.  Hochul says 45 defendants were charged in connection with three drug trafficking rings operating between Jamestown and Rochester.
 
 
Three Erie residents arrested for allegedly weekend Home Invasion-Burglary in Sherman...
Three Erie, Pennsylvania residents are jailed without bail for allegedly committing a home invasion-burglary in Sherman last Sunday morning.  Sheriff's deputies say they were called to 134 Cornish St. about 6:30 a.m. on a report of the three suspects getting inside the home.  Officers say an unidentified female resident there was initially attacked by 32 year-old Nicholas Tobin... while the other two -- 37 year-old June Hoovler and 35 year-old Jamie Markham -- stood at the front door to stop anyone from leaving or getting into the home.  The suspects allowed a man and child in the residence to move to another room during the incident.  The man then called 9-1-1.  The suspects then allegedly stole the female victim's cell phone... and, left before deputies arrived.  All three suspects were found... and, arrested Tuesday.  They were all arraigned on charges... including first-degree burglary... and, unlawful imprisonment.  They were the sent to the county lock-up.
 
 
Fieldbrook Foods announces addition of 50 new, full-time employees...
Fieldbrook Foods and the City of Dunkirk held a joint news conference yesterday afternoon and announced the addition of 50 full-time positions at the plant.  Bob Charleston, Fieldbook Foods Chief Executive Officer Bob Charleston made the announcement at the plant located on Ice Cream Drive in the city.  Charleston says they're "excited" about building "a newer, stronger more cohesive team."  He thanked the city for its cooperation along with the management team, the workers and the teamsters union.  Mayor Willie Rosas says city officials have been working closely with the company since he took office in January.  Rosas says he's had several meetings with Charleston over the past year.  He says many of the issues relate to the city's Wastewater Treatment Plant and some of the levels in regard to the company's permit.  He says both parties continue to work together in resolving any outstanding issues.  Charleston says he sees a "bright future" for the local facility, although he would not reveal any specifics about the company's future plans.  Fieldbrook Foods is adding the 50 jobs to the plant's 500 permanent jobs.
 
 
County Legislature approves boarding out some 18 inmates to Wyoming County...
Chautauqua County lawmakers have approved an agreement with Wyoming County to house some of the jail's inmates to stem an overcrowding situation.  Lawmakers meeting in Mayville last night voted unanimously for the agreement... which primarily involves some 18 state Parole violators.  County Executive Vince Horrigan says he's met with the county's Probation and Public Defender's Office about alleviating the situation.  Horrigan says they're taking another hard look at ways to relieve what he hopes is a "temporary" situation.  Sheriff Joe Gerace... who oversees the jail operation... says it's going to cost $85 each to house the excess inmates in Wyoming County.  Gerace says the county usually makes $95 a day on each federal prisoner they house... so it's cutting into the Sheriff's Office bottom line.  Horrigan says there's one other factor to consider... and, that's the fact it's Summer... and, there tends to be more "criminal activity" during the warmer months of the year. 
 
 
Dunkirk man initially looking at a shoplifting charge turns it into a robbery...
A north county man who is accused of robbing a store at the D&F Plaza last Monday afternoon is being held in the Chautauqua County jail without bail pending further court action.  Dunkirk Police Chief Dave Ortolano says the initial call came in just before 1 p.m. as a shoplifting.  However... Ortolano says as officers, arrived, the suspect was making his get-away.  He says 43-year-old Ethan Figueroa of Dunkirk is accused of displaying a knife to personnel at the J-C Penney store as he was leaving the store with stolen merchandise.  He says a private citizen played an instrumental role in helping police by calling 9-1-1 dispatch... and, telling them which way the suspect was headed.  Besides the stolen merchandise... Figueroa was also allegedly found to be in possession of a quantity of heroin and hypodermic instruments.  He faces several charges... including first-degree robbery.
 
 
City of Jamestown makes application for nearly $150,000 grant to deal with Zombie and Vacant Properties...
Jamestown's Department of Development is applying to the state for a nearly $150,000 grant to help it better deal with the city's zombie and vacant property issue.  That from Development Director Vince DeJoy... who outlined the city's Local Initiatives Support Corporation application to the state Housing Stabilization Fund last Monday night.  DeJoy says there are three parts to the application... including a small amount to be used for outreach to people who need help.  Secondly... he says they'll be looking for funding to help provide a GIS Module to help map out where vacant and zombie properties are.  He says the third component will be funding to add an attorney to the Corporation Counsel's Office to specialize in housing enforcement.  Last month... the city council approved the Department of Development submitting an application for the grant. 
 

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News Alert for Wed., Aug. 24, 2016

Martinez gets life for drug trafficking, murder of Quincey Turner...
A key figure in the murder of a drug informant in the Jamestown-area eight years ago has been sentenced to life in federal prison.  U-S Attorney William Hochul, Junior announced late Wednesday that 47 year-old Jose "Noelle" Martinez, received the sentence from Senior U-S District Court Judge William Skretny.  Hochul says Martinez was convicted by a federal jury of conspiracy to possess, with intent to distribute, 500 grams or more of cocaine.  Hochul says, "as the punishment in this case reflects, the defendant - convicted of narcotics trafficking - has been sentenced as a murderer.  This office will be relentless in utilizing all available federal tools to help ensure that those who pose a danger to our community are brought to justice."  Prosecutors say Martinez ran a drug trafficking organization in Jamestown.  They say Martinez supplied cocaine to another drug trafficking organization in Jamestown led by Quentin Leeper.  In May of 2008... Martinez put out a contract for the killing of Quincy Turner.  They say Martinez believed that Turner was cooperating with law enforcement... and, had him killed on May 30th of 2008 outside Turner's race shop near the Jamestown-Airport.  Hochul says 45 defendants were charged in connection with three drug trafficking rings operating between Jamestown and Rochester.

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News Headlines for Mon., Aug. 22, 2016

City police officials say Pacheco was apparently trafficking illegal narcotics outside the city as well...
The Jamestown man arrested during last Thursday afternoon's major bust on the southside is "an upper level dealer who is providing drugs outside" of the city.  That from Jamestown Police Chief Harry Snellings on the 15-Kilograms of illegal narcotics seized during the bust at 477 South Main Streets.  Snellings says they also arrested 34 year-old Juan Pacheco... who is allegedly a "major" dealer in both the city and region.  He says they got a break in arresting him at the alleged "stash house" he operated.  Snellings says Pacheco had "garnered" the attention for sometime.  But, adds they had some difficulty getting information.  However... he resurfaced, and police were able to nab him.  Snellings says members of the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force were "very pleased" to get both Pacheco and the $2.4-million worth of cocaine, methamphetime, and marijuana off the streets.  He says the city isn't growing or processing that amount of drugs... so the investigation will likely reach outside the city.  Acting District Attorney Patrick Swanson says Pacheco faces two A-1 Felony charges that carry substancial prison time.  Swanson says he faces 8 to 20 years on each charge in state prison.  He says Pacheco remains jailed without bail on the drug-possession charges... and, is scheduled for a preliminary hearing in city court this Wednesday.
 
 
Man found in possession of illegal drug following one-car accident in Gerry...
A Jamestown-area man was allegedly found in possession of a controlled substance after his car went off of Route 380 in the town of Gerry and crashed last Saturday afternoon.  Sheriff's officers say they were called to a report of a single-car accident about 4 p.m.  On arrival... deputies say they found that a car, driven by 47 year-old Andre Biekert of Fluvanna-Townline Road... went off the side of the road for no apparent reason.  Biekert was also found to be in possession of an illegal drug.  He's been charged with moving from lane unsafely... unlicensed operation... and, seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.  Biekert was issued appearance tickets.  He was not hurt.
 
 
Gerace says there are plenty of positives with new, Video Visit System for county jail...
Chautauqua County Sheriff Joe Gerace says there are a lot of positives about a new video visitation program that is being launched at the County Jail in Mayville.  The new technology will allow people to schedule a visit "on-line" with an inmate of the jail.  Gerace says there are several advantages to offering the program with no cost to county taxpayers.  He says it will cut the number of in-person visits because some people would have to travel long distances to get here.  Gerace adds it will also cut the amount of contraband that visitors try to bring into the jail.  He says the new program should help reduce the number of people that come into the jail's limited visitation area.  It also help personnel when it comes to scheduling visits since it requires on-line scheduling of visits for people who have computers.  To get more information about the system on the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Office website... go on-line to www.sheriff.us.
 
 
NYS doing more to help families of murder victims cover basic funeral costs...
The state is doing more to help cover the costs of funerals for murder victims.  Governor Cuomo says that he has signed legislation allowing funeral homes to seek up to $6,000 in reimbursement for expenses such as burial fees, clergy fees, headstones, flowers or obituaries for homicide victims.  Under the old policy, families of victims had to seek the reimbursement themselves -- forcing them to pay the costs upfront.  Cuomo says the bill is intended to give family members ``some peace of mind'' at a difficult time. 
 
 
Schumer wants "swift" review of JFK Airport incident...
U-S Senator Charles Schumer says the recent scare at Kennedy Airport raises ``disturbing'' questions about the facility's vulnerability to an actual attack.  The New York Democrat says Sunday that he wants a ``swift'' review by federal agencies of the incident and the security response to it.  Loud celebrations by passengers watching the Olympics have been offered as one possible explanation for the cause of the incident on August 14.  The reports of gunfire led to chaos and evacuations.  Authorities later determined no shots were fired.  Schumer says the review should focus on security officer training, agency coordination and whether the incident exposed weaknesses in how authorities communicate with the public during a potential crisis.  Governor Andrew Cuomo has already announced plans for his own review of the incident.
 
 
"Move-in" Weekend concluding at SUNY College at Fredonia...
It was "student move-in" Weekend at the State University of New York College at Fredonia this past weekend.  Jeff Woodard, Director of Marketing and Communications at Fredonia... says the university is helping student's get settled in as the new school year is about to begin.  Woodard says more than 250 student volunteers were on hand to help students get moved in.  In addition... SUNY at Fredonia officials expected there to be more than 1,400 vehicles bringing belongings to campus and some 1,200 hot dogs to be cooked in their Welcome Tent.  Classes for the nearly 5,000 students will get underway this week.
 
 
Animal welfare organization calls in state to end milk promotion at state fair...
An animal welfare organization is urging New York state to end a longstanding milk promotion at the upcoming State Fair at Syracuse.  The group Farm Sanctuary says that it has written to Governor Andrew Cuomo asking him to pull $90,000 in state funds that pay for a milk bar at the fair that charges 25-cents for a cup of milk.  In the letter... Farm Sanctuary President Gene Baur writes that cow milk is better suited for cows than people... and, that dairy consumption can lead to health problems like heart disease in humans.  Cuomo hasn't responded to the letter but he's unlikely to end the promotion. 
 

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News Headlines for Sat., Aug. 20, 2016

Snellings says police were "shocked" to find monumental quantity of narcotic drugs in southside "stash house..."
It's being called the biggest drug bust ever Chautauqua County... let alone Jamestown.  Some 15 kilograms of illegal narcotics has been taken off city streets... and, Police Chief Harry Snellings admitted that investigators wer "shocked" to see this quantity of drugs.  Snellings says members of the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force found three different types of drugs when they executed a search warrant at 477 South Main St. about 1:30 p.m. Thursday.  Snellings they found 9-Kilos of cocaine inside with a street value of more than $2-million.  He adds they also found 3-and-a-half Kilos of Methamphetime, worth $330,000... and, 2-and-a-half Kilos of marijuana, with a street value of $35,000.  In addition... Snellings says they found nearly $140,000 in cash.  Police also arrested a suspected "high-level" dealer at the scene... 34 year-old Juan Pacheco.  Pacheco is jailed without bail on three charges... including first-and second-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.  Both are Class-A Felonies.  Acting Chautauqua County District Attorney Patrick Swanson says the county is "a safer place today because a major trafficking channel has been shut down."  Swanson also vowed to find anyone else involved with the operation... and, bring them to justice. 
 
 
Law enforcement urges users whose supply has been affect to get help in kicking drug habit...
Chief Harry Snellings says it's likely that the drugs found in Juan Pacheco's possession were not all destined for the city.  He says, with this amount of narcotics, at least some was likely to be shipped, or dealt somewhere else.  In addition... Acting D-A Patrick Swanson says with this amount taken off the street... there's likely to be a "vaccum" in the supply line, and a lot of users won't be able to get their "fix."  Swanson urged addicts to seek help.  Snellings agreed... saying that on the plus-side... the drugs... and, a major drug trafficker are off the streets.  If you are a drug addict... and, need counseling and treatment help... call the Mental Health Association in Chautauqua County at 661-9044.
 
 
Brocton woman jailed for alleged animal cruelity...
A Brocton woman has been arrested for allegedly neglecting and abandoning her deceased dog for the past two months.  Sheriff's officers say they received a complaint about a dead dog in the upper apartment at 60 East Main St.  Deputies say witnesses told them that 33 year-old Kelly Harrell has apparently not cared for the animal the past several weeks... and, they found the animal has been dead for an extended period of time.  Officers arrested Harrell in Jamestown late Thursday on a warrant in the city of Jamestown without incident.  She was arraigned on charges including abandonment of animal... and, overdriving, torturing, and injuring an animal... and, sent to the county jail on $2,500 cash bail.
 
 
Cattaraugus County man jailed following Vehicle Pursuit in town of Ellicott...
A Randolph man faces a number of charges after allegedly leading multiple police agencies on a vehicle pursuit through the towns of Ellicott, Ellington, Gerry and Poland.  Sheriff's officers say they were alerted to a wanted man operating a car on North Main Street in Ellicott about 2 p.m. Friday.  Deputies say they tried to pull the vehicle over... but, the operator, 31 year-old Austin Slater, drove off.  Officers later used spike strips on the  Gerry-Levant Rd in the Town of Ellicott to disable the car.  Deputies say the vehicle entered into a field and Austin Slater fled into a wooded area.  A foot pursuit then began with the Sheriff's Department, and state Police K-9  Units involved.  After a large scale search of the area... Slater was found hiding in dense brush.  He was arrested on the outstanding warrant... and, other charges including speeding, reckless driving, and unlawfully fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle. 
 

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WJTN News Headlines

 

The city of Jamestown is one of the 10 winners of $10-million in state money to help it revitalize its downtown.  Empire State Development Commissioner Howard Zemsky made the announcement last night at the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts. Zemsky was filling in for Governor Cuomo... who has made most of the Downtown Revitalization Award announcements so far.  Jamestown had to compete with other communities across Western New York to receive the money.  Mayor Sam Teresi says he was both "humbled" and "overwhelmed" by the announcement... adding it says a lot for Jamestown, and what they're trying to do. State Senator Cathy Young says the money is part of an overall 100-million dollar contest intended to help communities around the state make their urban cores more attractive to residents and businesses.  Teresi praised his Department of Development... the Jamestown Renaissance Corporation... and foundations -- including the Gebbie... for the public/private effort to submit a winning proposal.


The Dunkirk man facing a felony kidnapping charge stemming from an incident at a Fredonia-area store is now being held in the Chautauqua County Jail without bail.  Acting County District Attorney Patrick Swanson says that 38-year-old Samuel Saeli was picked up for violating probation for a forgery offense out of Erie County, New York.  Swanson says Saeli, who had posted bail on the kidnapping charge, was arrested Wednesday night.
Saeli was arraigned on the charge late yesterday morning in Chautauqua County Court and sent to the County Jail without bail.  The 13 year-old autistic boy who was taken for a short time by Saeli... and, later found on Cushing Street in Fredonia... was not harmed.


State Police divers have now recovered the body of a South Dayton man who went missing and was presumed drowned after his kayak was knocked over in rough water on Lake Erie last Tuesday night.  Sheriff Joe Gerace says 20 year-old Dylan Lathrop was kayaking with three other friends in Sunset Bay in the town of Hanover.  Gerace says it was near the entrance to Cattaraugus Creek... and, the Sheriff's Office reports Lathrop was found in that area about 10 AM Thursday.  The recovery efforts on Wednesday were hampered by extremely poor visibility.  The recovery was made in approximately 16 feet of water.  The other three kayakers were able to make it to shore okay.


Despite some heavy rain from slow moving showers and thunderstorms in parts of Chautauqua County Thursday morning... forecasters say it didn't make much of a difference with the drought that continues grip the northern half of Chautauqua County.  Forecaster Judy Levan with the National Weather Service says the storms that hit the county's mid-section during the early morning hours brought a lot of rainfall to some places... but, not everywhere. The National Weather Service had issued a Flash Flood Warning for central Chautauqua County, but the warning has since expired and there were no reports of any major flooding.  The new Drought Monitor Report today shows the lake shore area remains under a severe drought while the mid-section of the county is still under a moderate drought.  Conditions have improved from the Jamestown-area southward, where the map indicates there is no longer a rainfall deficit.  

 

The group "Be Part of the Solution" will be hosting a first-ever Drug Addiction Recovery and Awareness Walk this Saturday morning in Jamestown.  That from Kim Carlson, who began the group in the wake of her son, Alex Foulk's overdose death, this past February 26th.  Carlson says she had no idea what the "solution" might be... but, she says 150 people showed up for their first meeting... and, the momentum has continued.  She says the walk... which begins at 8 AM at Shawbucks... will be dedicated to a friend's daughter. Carlson says organizers will be at Shawbucks at 7 AM... and, registration begins at 8.  She says they'll walk past the Jamestown Savings Bank Arena... where Alex played youth and adult hockey... and, other places.  Carlson says they'll go past his childhood home on Summit Avenue... then move to the southside... and other places Alex loved to be at.  Carlson says there will also be a benefit held for McKenzie Paulson's young children at the Hartfield Fire Hall near Mayville beginning following the walk.  For more information... call 499-5070.


The long-term vision for "Be Part of the Solution" is to find a location for transitional housing to help recovering addicts stay clean... and, provide a place for families to remain together.  That from Kim Carlson... who says such housing is available elsewhere... but, is not available in the Jamestown-area.  Carlson says that's part of what the Alex Foulk Memorial Fund with the Chautauqua Region Community Foundation.  She says they may begin by just helping to provide clean bedding, and other necessities. Carlson says the Community Foundation fund will be used for the longer term goal of helping support transitional housing for recovering addicts.  She also has started a second fund with a local bank that is used for more immediate issues... such as someone needing a place to spend the night... or help in getting to an appointment regarding their recovery.  Carlson says that also goes by the name the "Alex Foulk Memorial Fund."


New York is lowering the age at which drivers can register to become organ donors from 18 to 16.  Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the law Thursday, saying thousands of New Yorkers are waiting for organs and this will help to grow the registry of potential donors.  The law includes a provision for parents to rescind that consent if their child dies before turning 18.  The law takes effect in six months.  After that... New Yorkers who apply for a learner's permit to drive at age 16 or 17 will be able to register for the New York State Donate Life Registry.  Legislative sponsors say 47 other states have either no restriction on the minimum age for donor registration or allow enrollment younger than age 18.


    

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News Alert for Thurs., Aug. 18, 2016

Jamestown gets $10-million state grant to help revitalized downtown core...
The city of Jamestown is one of the 10 winners of $10-million in state money to help it revitalize its downtown.  Empire State Development Commissioner Howard Zemsky filled in for Governor Andrew Cuomo in making the announcement early this evening at the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts.  The money is part of an overall $100-million dollar contest intended to help communities around the state make their urban cores more attractive to residents and businesses.  One community from each of the state's 10 economic regions will win the $10-million prize.  Cuomo has said he wants the competition to help local communities turn their downtowns into ``vibrant'' places to live, work and raise families.

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News Update for Thurs., Aug. 18, 2016

Saeli arrested on Felony warrant, now jailed without bail...
The Dunkirk man facing a felony kidnapping charge stemming from an incident at a Fredonia-area store is now being held in the Chautauqua County Jail without bail.  Acting County District Attorney Patrick Swanson says that 38-year-old Samuel Saeli was picked up for violating probation for a forgery offense out of Erie County, New York.  Swanson says Saeli, who had posted bail on the kidnapping charge, was arrested last evening.  He says Saeli was arraigned on the charge late this morning in Chautauqua County Court and sent to the county lock-up.
 
Body of missing kayaker recovered in Lake Erie...
State Police divers have now recovered the body of a South Dayton man who went missing and was presumed drowned after his kayak was knocked over in rough conditions on Lake Erie last Tuesday night.  Sheriff Joe Gerace says 20 year-old Dylan Lathrop was kayaking with three other friends in Sunset Bay in the town of Hanover.  Gerace says it was near the entrance to Cattaraugus Creek... and, the Sheriff's Office reports Lathrop was found in that area about 10 this morning.  The recovery efforts on Wednesday were hampered by extremely poor visibility.  The recovery was made in approximately 16 feet of water. 
 

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WJTN News Headlines

 

A local maker of heavy-duty truck cooling systems has been acquired by an auto-component conglomerate group from India.  In addition... TitanX's Global President of Research and Development, Matt Moore, says the purchase by Tata AutoComp Systems company will provide stability for the long-term future of the local company.  Moore says their parent company of the past eight-years... EQT Private Equity... had always planned to grow the company, then find new ownership to continue it's growth. Under EQT... Moore says TitanX grew from three factories around the world to six.  TitanX Chief Executive Officer Stefan Nordstrom says they're "excited to get a new owner that has been serving the automotive industry since 1995."  Moore says the best part of Tata's purchase is it provides confidence for their customers... most of whom have performance contracts that run from 5 to 7 years.  Tata Chairman Preveen Kadle says Titan, "represents state-of-the-art powertrain cooling solutions with a global presence that fits perfectly into our future growth areas."  Moore says the Jamestown plant will continue operations with between 230 and 250 employees.

 

The former chief operator of the village of Westfield's Waste Water Treatment Plant has been sentenced to probation, and a fine for violating the Clean Water Act.  U-S Attorney Willam Hochul, Junior says 34 year-old Andrew Thompson was sentenced Tuesday to six months probation and a 10-thousand dollar fine by U.S. Magistrate Jeremiah McCarthy.  Assistant U-S Attorney Aaron Mango, who prosecuted the case, says Thompson was operator of the plant on June 12th of 2014 when a malfunction occurred at a pump station in the Village.  Mango says the station was unable to pump the untreated sewage flowing through the facility... and, that resulted the raw sewage being discharged into Chautauqua Creek.  Based on an alarm being triggered due to the sewage overflow... he says Thompson was aware of the discharge into the creek.  Mango adds that... the following day... as workers were trying to fix the pump station, Thompson directed them to discharge the untreated sewage into the creek.  However... Thompson did not have a permit issued under the Clean Water Act for the discharge of the untreated sewage.

 

Local Congressman Tom Reed is reiterating opposition to the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement now that President Obama has sent formal notice to lawmakers that TPP has been finalized.  Reed is now on-record as saying that he is "100-percent opposed" to TPP... which has been pushed by the president.  The Corning Republican says he has three problems with TPP... the first being access to dairy markets for local farmers.  Reed says, second, is questionable currency manipulation by Japan. Reed says he's also concerned about protection for intellecutal properties.  His opponent in the upcoming election... Democrat John Plumb... had criticized Reed for not opposing TPP because it's bad for U-S industry and labor.  However... he has maintained that he never supported TPP, but, has wanted to look closely at the agreement before taking a stand one way or the other.  The president's action last Friday prevents action on the agreement for another 30 days.  Reed made his comments during his weekly telephone conference call with Southern Tier Media.

 

Gasoline prices in the western Southern Tier of New York state have been trending downward... but, some areas are trending further down than the Jamestown-area.  Prices around here have hovered lately around the 2-dollar-26 and 2-dollar-30 cent level.  However... recent prices across the 23rd Congressional District are as low as 2--06 in the Finger Lakes area. Reed says one of the issues also faced is with Pennsylvania border areas... where the price in recent weeks... has been as much as 30 to 40 cents lower per gallon for regular, unleaded.  However... recent prices have been within 10-cents a gallon.  He says that's due more to state gasoline taxes.

 

A spokesman for New York's economic development agency says federal auditors who faulted the state's oversight of 22-million dollars in tourism promotions funding are off-base.  Jason Conwall, a spokesman for Empire State Development, says that the critical report from the Department of Housing and Urban Development's Office of Inspector General relied on an incorrect interpretation of federal regulations.  The audit says New York officials failed to comply with procurement rules and did not ensure money was spent effectively.  The audit says the failures amount to a "significant deficiency."  The audit is the third this summer to fault economic development programs run by the Democratic governor's administration.  The funds were spent promoting tourism in areas recovering from Hurricane Irene and Tropical Storm Lee in 2011 and Superstorm Sandy in 2012.

 

A Dunkirk man has been charged with kidnapping after an incident involving a 13-year-old autistic boy who went missing from the Wal-Mart store on Bennett Road in Fredonia last Sunday night.  Police Chief Brad Meyers says the ordeal began when the child, who was not identified, became missing and the parents advised a store employee.  After an extensive search of the store... Fredonia Police were contacted.  About 45 minutes after the start of the incident... Meyers says they received a call from a Cushing Street resident who had located the child.
A review of store video allegedly showed that Saeli approached the youth in the store, engaged in a brief conversation with him and then they both walked out of the store... and, got into Saeli's vehicle.  Police arrested Saeli, charging him with second-degree kidnapping... and, he was arraigned in Fredonia Village Court.  Saeli posted 10-thousand dollars cash bail or 20-thousand property bond.  Meyers is asking that anyone who may have experienced similar situations to contact Fredonia Police at 679-1531.

 

Dunkirk Police have arrested a city man in connection with last month's accidental shooting of a 4-year-old child on South Roberts Road.  Police Chief David Ortolano has announced the arrest of 27-year-old Angel Lopez-Tirado.  Ortolano says... among the charges in City Court against him... are two Felony weapons-related charges. The incident occurred at 544 South Roberts Road around 10:30 PM back on July 25th.  The child was treated by Dunkirk firefighters and transported to Brooks Memorial Hospital... and, was later transferred to Women and Children's Hospital in Buffalo with non-life threatening injuries.  Ortolano says city police investigators worked with the District Attorney's office, resulting in Lopez-Tirado's arrest.  He was arraigned on the charges... and, freed on 30-thousand dollars cash bail.

 

Drunken boaters in New York should soon face more severe punishments if they have previous convictions for driving other vehicles while intoxicated.  A new state law signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo links penalties for boating while intoxicated with prior DWI or driving while ability impaired offenses.

 

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**News Alert** Jamestown Homicide

A Jamestown woman is in the Chautauqua County Jail after allegedly stabbing a Jamestown Man to death on the city's north side Sunday night.  Jamestown Police report that 23 year old Barbara Redeye has been charged with murder in the 2nd degree for her role in the stabbing death of 36 year old Dale Redeye that occured about 8:45pm Sunday night at 501 Lakeview Avenue. Police are calling this a homicide.   Redeye dead at the scene as a result from his injuries from the stabbing.  The investigation is continuing. Jamestown Police were assisted at the scene by investigators from the Chautuaqua County Forensic Investigation Team, New York State Police, and Town of Ellicott Police.

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WJTN News Headlines

 

A woman is in the city Jail this following a stabbing incident that led to the death of a man on Lakeview Avenue.  Jamestown Police got the call reporting the stabbing about 8:45pm Sunday.  Police arrived and found the deceased male victim in the upstairs apartment at 501 Lakeview Avenue.  Investigators have the woman in custody and have charged her with Murder in the 2nd Degree.  She is currently in the city jail awaiting arraignment.  Police say they will release more details today regarding the identities of both the suspect in custody and the deceased victim.   Jamestown Police were assisted at the scene by investigators from the Chautuaqua County Forensic Investigation Team, New York State Police, and Town of Ellicott Police.

 

One man is in jail and two men are on the run following a burglary in Warren, Pennsylvania.  Pennsylvania State Police report that just after 4pm Saturday 61 year old John Brady arrived at his home in Pleasant Drive Township to find three black men burglarizing his house.  Two of the men fled the house while Brady held a third - 26 year old Lasheam Steward of Buffalo at gunpoint. Steward fled and got away in a stolen truck that belongs to 62 year old Earl Hartman who lives nearby. Hartman used another truck to  chase Steward down a dead end road where he crashed his truck.  After the Crash Steward assaulted Hartman and took the second truck.  Attempting to flee the scene in the truck Steward struck Hartmen and crashed that vehicle.  Steward then fled on foot.  A short time later Steward was apprehended on Pleasant Drive after police received a report of a suspicious person in the neighborhood.  Steward was arrested and transported to the Warren County Jail and has been charged with burglary, theft, criminal mischief, and criminal conspiracy.  Pennsylvania State Police are requesting assistance from the public in apprehending the other two suspects and are asking that any suspicious activity in the area be reported immediately. One of the suspects was dressed in all black, the second was wearing jeans and a blue and white striped shirt at the time of the incident.  Pennsylvania State Police in Warren were assisted by troopers from the Erie and Corry Stations, Conewango and Warren City Police, as well as the Warren and Forest County Sheriff's departments.

 

Dunkirk Firefighters were busy Saturday night fighting a vehicle fire that spread to two nearby houses.  The call went out at 10:58pm for a car fully engulfed in flames which had spread to 33 and 35 West Third Street in the city.  Firefighters knocked out the car fire quickly and searched for people in the residences.  33 West Third was a vacant home.  35 West Third was occupied, but nobody was home at the time of the fire.  It took firefighters approximately 3 hours to knock out the flames.  One firefighter with a medical emergency was taken to Brooks Hospital, treated and released.  Mutual aid was provided by East and West Town Fire departments and Fredonia Fire.  The fire is being investigated by City of Dunkirk and Chautauqua County Fire Investigators.

 

The naming of an architectural firm to head up renovation projects at Brooks Memorial Hospital and Lake Shore Hospital is "the first major step" in bringing a new health care system to Chautauqua County.  That from Brook's Chief Executive Officer Mary LaRowe... who says Brooks, and the TLC Health Network jointly announced that Clark Patterson Lee will head up the renovation efforts for both hospitals.  LaRowe says they settled on the Buffalo-based firm after a lengthy interview process. Clark Patterson Lee will construct a new building for Brooks... which LaRowe expects to happen by 2019.  Meanwhile, there will be several different projects going on at Lake Shore Hospital.  That from TLC Spokesman Scott Butler. Funds from a $57 million state grant will be used for the renovations at both hospitals.  Brooks and TLC announced earlier this year their intentions to become affiliated with Kaleida Health of Buffalo.

 

Police say a body has been found amid debris from a blaze at a western New York tire recycling plant, where thick smoke forced hundreds of neighbors to leave their homes. Lockport police say the body was found around 7 p.m. Friday at the scene of the fire at High Tread International. The person hasn't been identified. Officials had said they were looking into whether anyone was inside the facility when the fire started Wednesday. More than 200 firefighters battled the blaze before getting it under control Thursday. The fire forced the evacuation of about 200 nearby homes as acrid smoke wafted across the area, about 30 miles northeast of Buffalo. Some residents were allowed to return to their homes Friday.

 

"The whole of Jamestown is here"... That's the way one man described the scene at the Gateway Center on Water Street Friday afternoon, as Community Helping Hands celebrated its 15th anniversary with a huge block party.  In the midst of it all was Executive Director, Pastor Amy Rohler. Community Helping Hands provides clothing, furniture and household items for people in need.  Amy Rohler thanked everyone in the area who's helped them over 15 years, saying the Jamestown area is a 'wonderful, wonderful community'. In conjuntion with the anniversary, the organization has begun a campaign to get 50 individuals or groups to agree to provide $15 a week... so the they can to more in the next 15 years. Additional information on Community Helping Hands is available at 487-1488 or at chhny.org.

 

Almost 45 years after America's bloodiest prison rebellion, a historian's new account names troopers and Attica prison guards that investigators believed killed hostages and many unarmed inmates. Heather Ann Thompson also writes that authorities knew hostages would die, and details Gov. Nelson Rockefeller's secret efforts afterward to establish an acceptable narrative of what happened. Rockefeller ordered the retaking of the New York prison in 1971. The 1,300 inmates who rioted over conditions four days earlier and controlled part of the prison had clubs, knives and makeshift weapons and threatened to kill hostages. State police and guards fatally shot 29 inmates and 10 hostages. Thompson cites from court documents in "Blood on the Water" scheduled for release this month. Details from the book were first published by the Rochester Democrat and Chronicle.

 

The Village of Lakewood  Department of Public Works is announcing a road closure beginning this morning.  Due to a scheduled road project, Mall Boulevard/East. Robert Bootey Boulevard will be closed between Hunt Road and the Village/town line from 7:30am until work is finished this afternoon.

 

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WJTN News Headlines

Wednesday afternoon's downpour's caught some people off-guard because most of the rain was expected later in the day.  However... it began raining here at the Media One Group studios shortly after 5 PM... and, continued for about an hour.  There was flash flooding in a number of locations... including part of the Chautauqua Mall parking lot... near the creek.  A Flash Flood Warning issued by the National Weather Service expired at 8:30 last night.  There was also flash flooding in lower parts of Jamestown, and a number of basements were flooded.  There was also a power pole reported down on Fairmount Avenue in West Ellicott... leading to some isolated outages in that area.  There were still a hand-full of outages being taken care of by National Grid just south of Jamestown late last night.

 

The Jamestown-area got some showers and thunderstorms early Wednesday morning... and, late Wednesday afternoon.  A few inches of rain were reported in some places.  However... fire officials are still concerned about the drought conditions and the potential for brush fires.  Chautauqua County Emergency Services Director Julius Leone says while we have received some rainfall, people should still refrain from open burning. Leone says it doesn't take much to get a brush fire going... and, he says once they start, they become a major challenge for firefighters.  On Tuesday afternoon... several fire departments in the North County dealt with at least two such fires in the towns of Pomfret and Portland.  No injuries were reported. 

 

Jamestown Police are investigating a shooting that occured early last evening in the 600-block of Spring Street.  City Police say they received a report of shots fired shortly after 8 PM... and, found the victim had been shot in the hand.  JPD Captain Bob Samuelson says the unidentified victim was initially taken to WCA Hospital... then transferred to UPMC Hamot Medical Center in Erie, Pennsylvania.  Samuelson says investigators report an Hispanic man... and, a black male approached the victim... who was on his bike... in the area of East Sixth Street at Spring.  One of the suspects allegedly fired 4 to 5 shots at the man near 614 Spring.  Investigators believe this is NOT a random act... and, that the victim was targeted.  If you have any information on the incident... call city police... or their tips line at 483-TIPS... or 483-8477.

 

A Mayville woman has been arrested for allegedly extensively damaging another person's vehicle as it was parked in the driveway of another person's residence.  City Police say 21 year-old Ebony Elam had a valid order of protection against her to stay away from the home at 46 Wescott Street.  Officers were called to the scene shortly after 11 PM Tuesday night.  Police say they found the damaged vehicle on arrival... and, found Elam a short distance away.  She was arrested without incident on charges of second-degree criminal contempt... and, third-degree criminal mischief.  Elam was arraigned and sent to the county jail on 10-thousand dollars cash bail.

 

The National Comedy Center in Jamestown has received a 1.7-million dollar federal grant to help fund new initiatives at the site on the city's westside.  Local Congressman Tom Reed announced the grant late yesterday... saying it will be used to fund new attractions, and the related construction during the expansion process at the location... which is currently under construction.  It's being awarded under the Public Works Program at the U.S. Department of Commerce.  Reed says "this is a great step in the right direction which will allow the project to continue to move forward.  It’s only right that we continue to work with local leaders and continue to advocate for the resources that this site needs to be completed.  Comedy Center Board Chairman Tom Benson says they are "thrilled" to be receiving the award.  Benson says "the federal government has sent a clear signal that it recognizes and endorses the National Comedy Center as a world class attraction and the massive catalytic economic impact that it will have on Jamestown and the entire region."

 

Southern Tier Congressman Tom Reed joined a number of elected officials and community leaders in participating in the annual "VIP Fishing Day" on Lake Erie near Dunkirk.  The Corning Republican says that the trip was not only an opportunity to do some fishing... but, adds he was also able to discuss a number of issues relating to the lake.
County Executive Vince Horrigan and Dunkirk Mayor Willie Rosas were also among the officials who took part in the trip.  Horrigan says he introduced Dunkirk's new marina operator, Charle Pringle, to Reed and other officials.  He says they discussed the "breakwall" situation there.  Rosas says this is the second year he has participated in the Fishing Day event and he says it's a great opportunity to "showcase" the city... and, the great fishing on Lake Erie.  The Annual "VIP Fishing Day" was organized by the fish advisory boards from both Chautauqua and Erie counties.

 

The retired veteran who has headed up the Chautauqua County Veteran's Service Agency since December of 2013 has announced that he is retiring next November 11th.  With that... County Executive Vince Horrigan has begun the process of finding a replacement for Gary Chilcott.  Horrigan says Chilcott was already a veteran of 28-years in the U-S Air Force... and 15 years in public education when he was hired. Horrigan says Chilcott "has been an incredible leader and a strong advocate for Chautauqua County Veterans."  They and their familes total about 11-thousand in all.  Horrigan says he's already put a search committee in place... made up of local military, and elected officials... to find a replacement.  Horrigan says that most local veterans are seniors are 65 years of age... or older.  He says that means cross-overs into Medicare and Medicaid... and, the county's Office for the Aging.  With that... Horrigan says it becomes a collaborative effort to provide the services they need.  He made his comments recently on "Community Spotlight."

 

New York auditors say the state's Medicaid system made up to 12.1-million dollars in inappropriate payments last year, including 2.3-million in managed care payments for dead patients.   Auditors say other payments went for recipients dropped from long-term care coverage.  About $2.1 million was recovered during the auditors' field work.
 The state health department says it's pursuing other overpayments.  Medicaid spending for more than 6 million low-income New Yorkers this year is expected to exceed 63-billion dollars... half of it federally funded.  The audit report says claims are processed and paid weekly, averaging about 7-million claims and more than $1 billion in payments to providers.  Auditors say they identified 119 dead people enrolled in Medicaid and 1,177 enrollees who died and weren't automatically removed.

 


 

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News Alert for Wed., Aug. 10, 2016

City police investigate alleged "targeted" shooting on Spring Street...

Jamestown Police are investigating a shooting that occured early last evening in the 600-block of Spring Street.  City Police Captain Bob Samuelson says they received a report of shots fired shortly after 8 PM... and, found the victim had been shot in the hand near 614 Spring.  Samuelson says the unidentified victim was initially taken to WCA Hospital... then transferred to UPMC Hamot Medical Center in Erie, Pennsylvania.  Samuelson says investigators report an Hispanic man... and, a black male approached the victim... who was on his bike.. in the area of East Sixth Street at Spring.  The victim was then fired at some 4 to 5 times... and, investigators believe the victim was targeted.  If you have any information on the incident... call city police... or their tips line at 483-TIPS... or 483-8477.

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WJJTN News Headlines

The ribbon has been cut on the Chautauqua County Republican headquarters in downtown Lakewood.  Local Congressman Tom Reed did the honors during last night's opening at 119 Chautauqua Avenue.  However... Reed was just one of a handful of local Republican candidates who were on hand.  County GOP Chairman Al Hendrickson of West Ellicott says he was "very pleased" with the turn-out.  Hendrickson says they decided on Lakewood for a few reasons... including parking. Hendrickson says the accessiblity is good for people wanting to stop by the headquarter... as well as volunteer there.  It will now be open everyday through the November election.  State Senator Cathy Young was the only member of the ticket not on hand because she was in Albany on Senate business.  However... Assemblyman Andy Goodell was there... rallying the party faithful for the local candidates... including Reed.  Also on hand were GOP District Attorney candidate Jason Schmidt... and, Family Court Judge candidate Mike Sullivan -- both of Fredonia.

 

In addition to the local GOP headquarters... Congressman Tom Reed's campaign will also be using the space in Lakewood as his western New York headquarters.  Reed emphasized the need for teamwork during the final 90-days of the 2016 campaign... noting that he has been able to help the county with issues from dredging Lake Erie... to school taxes. Assemblyman Andy Goodell touted Reed's 200 town hall meetings that he's held with contituents all over the expansive 23rd District.  Reed says "if you're representing people, you gotta to listen to people, an hear what they have on their minds."  The Corning Republican says they help him bring the important issues to them, to the forefront in Washington, D-C.

 

Federal authorities say they've busted up an international drug ring that used containers labeled ``sea cucumbers'' to send millions of dollars' worth of cocaine, heroin and fentanyl to western New York via California and Mexico.  U.S. Attorney William Hochul, Junior announced at a news conference late Tuesday morning  that 17 people have been indicted on federal drug trafficking and money laundering charges.  Prosecutors say the ring linked to Mexico's Sinaloa drug cartel used front companies in California and the Buffalo area to smuggle narcotics on pallets of goods purporting to be sea cucumbers, used in Chinese cuisine.   The Drug Enforcement Administration says the sting netted more than 2.5-million dollars worth of illegal drugs. Federal officials say the traffickers sent about 20-million dollars from Buffalo-area banks to California in a one-year period.

 

Authorities say they've discovered what they believe is a methamphetamine lab under the parking lot of a suburban Buffalo Wal-Mart store.  Police in the town of Amherst say officers on routine patrol found chemicals and other items used to make meth in an underground culvert that runs below the parking lot.  Officers say the culvert is tall enough for a person to stand up in.  Police and fire crews on Monday removed several jars of suspected meth from a manhole that's accessible from the culvert.  Authorities say they plan to look at the Wal-Mart store's surveillance video to see if it shows people using the culvert.  No arrests have been made yet.

 

Portions of Chautauqua and Cattaraugus remain under drought conditions... but, there could be some good news on the way for farmers in the form of rainfall... beneficial rainfall.  Forecasters say a complex frontal zone is forecast to stall over our region this weekend... and, it has the potential to produce periods of rain and scattered thunderstorms.  That from Forecaster Dave Thomas of the National Weather Service in Buffalo. Unfortunately... should the weather system materialize, the rain could become heavy enough to produce some isolated flash flooding.  Thomas says the rainfall deficit since March 1st is close to eight inches, with Western New York only getting about half of its normal rainfall. 

 

Local Congressman Tom Reed says he shares the concern of other lawmakers and farm officials over the long-term effects of the current drought on the upstate region.  U-S Senator Chuck Schumer has asked the U-S Department of Agriculture for a "damage assessment" on how the lack of rain could impact crops as the harvest season looms ahead.  Reed says he recently met with officials from the New York Farm Bureau... and, adds the issue did come up. Reed says all aspects of the farming industry will likely be impacted... but, says it will likely be seen most in the "specialty crop" area... including grapes... corn... onions... potatoes... and apples will be affected.  Local grape growers say it's going to be a matter of who got the most rain.

 

Fire has damaged a large grain solo at a farm in the south county town of Poland... which led to a portion of Route 62 being closed for about 3-and-a-half hours Tuesday morning.  Kennedy Fire Chief Keith Bean says his fire crews were called to the scene at the Stearns farm at 25-91 Route 62 about 7:20 AM.  Bean says a passer-by called in the alarm... and, adds they found the blaze pretty quickly. Bean says while the silo was filled with smoke and some fire... there was never a threat to the attached Barn... nor the nearby house.  He says they were joined by eight other fire departments at the scene to help get water and fire retardant to the scene.  Bean says they don't have a cause yet... but, he says it appears the heat spawned the combustion of some materials in the silo.  He says Route 62 between Hartson and Scott Hill Roads reopened shortly before 11 AM.  Kennedy was joined at the scene by several other departments... and, the county's HazMat Team.  No one was hurt.

 

Service arrangments have been announced for former WJTN, SE-93 FM radio host Steve Ehmke... who passed away at his apartment in St. Petersburg, Florida last Thursday morning.  Steve... who went by the on-air name, "Dave McKay" on the WQYK-FM in Tampa... was with the powerhouse Country station for the past 24 years.  The memorial service will be held at 5 PM this Thursday at the Mahaffey Theater in St. Petersburg... with doors opening at 4:30 PM.  Steve died suddenly at the age of 55.  Hundreds of fans signed memorial tributes to McKay at WQYK's tents at the Hank Williams Jr./Chris Stapleton concert in Tampa.  The station reports there's also been  an enormous outpouring of support from country artists.  Luke Bryan, Blake Shelton, Dierks Bentley and Jennifer Nettles are among the singers who have expressed condolences to the station.  Brad Paisley tweeted -- "Heartbroken to hear of the passing of Dave McKay.  He was always fun, always upbeat, and one of the great ones."

 

We have a correction on a story we aired Monday on the new statue of Lucille Ball in Celoron.  Mayor Scot Schrecengost says the old, "Scary Lucy" statue that gained international fame will now remain in Lucille Ball Memorial Park permanently.  That decision was made a short time ago.  Initially... it was to be placed in the new, National Comedy Center in Jamestown... but, that is no longer the case.  The "Scary Lucy" statue is now located near the Summer Wind landing... and, faces Chautauqua Lake.

 

 

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WJTN News Headlines

Two Buffalo men have been arrested in connection with what Jamestown Police call the "brutal" home invasion-robbery at 188 Falconer Street just over two years ago.  City Police Captain Bob Samuelson says 30 year-old Ernest Bishop, and 27 year-old Ralph Clayton were secretly indicted by the Chautauqua County Grand Jury on 16 charges each... including three counts of first-degree robbery.  The incident occured in the early morning hours of July 1st, 2014.  Samuelson says both were arrested by State Parole and Buffalo authorities. Samuelson says both Bishop and Clayton were prime actors in the incident... which police were called to about 3 AM that day.  One of the alleged suspects fired one round at police... and, an officer returned fire.  Samuelson says one of the men previously convicted in the case suffered a gun-shot wound in the incident... as the six men were trying to escape.  However... it was not a life-threatening wound.  Both suspects were arraigned in county court... and, sent to the Chautauqua County Jail on 500-thousand dollars cash bail each.

 

A Dallas, Texas man faces numerous charges after allegedly leading police on a two-state car chase that began on Interstate 86 in the town of Sherman.  Sheriff's officers say deputies tried to stop a vehicle on I-86 shortly before 5 last Sunday morning for an equipment violation.  However... officers say the driver failed to comply... and, continued driving west into the state of Pennsylvania.  Once in Pennsylvania... deputies were assisted by state Police in Pennsylvania.  Officers say the car... driven by 27 year-old George Anderson, Junior... continued west onto Interstate 90 West... and, was eventually stopped near Exit 35.  Deputies say Anderson was taken into custody by Pennsylvania State Police, and held on charges.  Chautauqua County deputies also filed an arrest warrant for Anderson.  He'll be extradited back to New York state to face charges at a later date.

 

It's been a rough two-weeks for Republican Presidential Nominee Donald Trump... who publicly fought with a Gold Star military family... and, finally endorsed some key GOP members of Congress.  It's led some Republicans in Congress to defect... and, say they're going to vote for Democrat Hillary Clinton.  However... local representative Tom Reed says he's not one of them.  Reed says he's going to continue being a "positive voice" in the campaign, and adds it's basically a two-person race now. Reed says he respectfully disagrees with some New York Republicans... such as Richard Hanna... who say they will be voting for a Democrat for president.  As for Trump finally endorsing House Speaker Paul Ryan, and U-S Senator John McCain... Reed says Trump is committed to "The Better Way" policy that was developed by Ryan that pushes tax reform... and, health care reform, among others.  He made his comments during his weekly telephone conference call with Southern Tier Media.

 

U-S Senator Charles Schumer says Congress must return to Washington to take up emergency funding to combat the Zika virus.  The New York Democrat said Sunday that ongoing work on a vaccine could be jeopardized unless lawmakers end their current recess early and approve a $1.9 billion emergency Zika funding bill.  Schumer says he made his request in a letter to House and Senate leadership.  State officials say there have been 537 confirmed cases of Zika in New York so far, though all appear to be connected to travel to affected areas.  Schumer says lawmakers would only have to return to Washington for a single day to approve the funding.  Congress is now scheduled to reconvene in September.

 

Chautauqua County Executive Vince Horrigan says things are starting to happen when it comes to the Athenex plant near Dunkirk.  Horrigan says work will begin soon on workforce development for the plant that will be located in the town of Dunkirk, just northeast of the city line. Horrigan says all workers at the plant will have to meet standards set by the federal Food and Drug Administration since the plant will be manufacturing anti-Cancer drugs.  He says that's because this is "very high-tech, temperature controlled" production... and, is highly-regulated.  As work continues on the actual design the plant, Horrigan says they expect hiring to get underway in about the next year-and-a-half.  Once in operation... the plant will manufacture high-potency oncology drugs and is expected to generate 900 jobs.

 

Genetic research over the past 15 years has born out what scientists have believed for many years... as man has moved to higher latitudes... his skin pigmentation is reduced.  That from yesterday's featured lecturer at Chautauqua Institution... Penn State University Professor of Anthropology, Nina Jablonski... who says our ancestors in Africa needed maximum skin pigmentation to protect themselves from the sun's ultra-violet rays.
Jablonski says most of our ancestors from western Europe... and, elsewhere in the more northern climates saw their skin color changes over decades and centuries of time.  As for the future... she says it will likely depend on whether a person and their future generations live -- or don't live - in urban parts of the more northern regions.  She says the newer, urban area residents will be more "brown" in color.  Jablonski spoke with our Dennis Webster, and Matt Warren to begin "Pushing Our Bodies' Limits" week at Chautauqua Institution.

 

Authorities are warning New York drivers against taking selfies, citing a national review suggesting they are among the most likely to do it.  It's generally illegal except in an emergency to use a handheld mobile device while driving in the Empire State.  Terri Egan, executive deputy commissioner of the New York Department of Motor Vehicles, says taking selfies behind the wheel is ``just irresponsible.''  The Auto Insurance Center website says it recently reviewed 70,000 Instagram posts with driving-related hashtags, including #DrivingSelfie, #SelfieWhileDriving, and #HopeIDontCrash.  New Yorkers ranked eighth nationally with 1.29 posts per 100,000 residents.  AAA reports that a driver's eyes may leave the road for at least two seconds to snap a selfie, during which time a car can travel 176 feet at 60 miles per hour.

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WJTN News Headlines

Four people escaped serious injury yesterday afternoon when the car they were riding in swerved to avoid another vehicle... and, crashed on Route 430 in DeWittville.  Sheriff's officers were called to the scene in the area of Point Chautauqua Golf Course... and, determined the unidentified driver had swerved to avoid hitting another car that was turning onto Route 430.  Deputies say the vehicle struck a dirt embankment and became airborne.  Officers say the vehicle then landed on one of the greens of the golf course.  They say the four occupants were then transported to Westfield Memorial Hospital for treatment of apparent minor injuries.  Mayville, Maple Springs, and Dewittville Fire rescuers were called to the scene to assist.

 

A Brocton teenager faces charges after allegedly stealing a pick-up truck hauling a trailer... and, crashing it on Webster Road in the town of Pomfret late last week.  Sheriff's officers say they were called to the scene last Wednesday afternoon... and, found the truck and trailer... which had struck several trees and rolled over.  Deputies say the unidentified 14 year-old had apparently lost control on a curve in the road when the speeding vehicle crashed.  The teen reportedly fled the scene, and was later found on Ellicott Road.  He was checked over by EMS crews, and refused further treatment.  The teen faces charges once the investigation is completed.

 

Dozens of people crowded around a small tent in Lucille Ball Memorial Park in Celoron Saturday afternoon to see the unveiling of the new Lucy statue.  Mayor Scot Schrecenogst and sculptor Carolyn Palmer performed the unveiling. Immediate reaction to the new statue has been very positive.  Schrecengost talked about the past year... and, the process of finding a different sculptor to do a new statue to replace the one that had become known as "Scary Lucy."  He says... once that decision had been made... they were inundated with offers. Schrecengost says that team included local artist Gary Peters, Junior... and, Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Comedy Center Director Journey Gunderson.  He says they ultimately decided on Palmer... who thanked the village for hiring her, and those who supported her efforts along the way.  Palmer says she really had to work hard to get the project done in time for the Lucille Ball Comedy Festival Weekend.

 

Celoron Mayor Scot Schrecengost told the throng of people on hand for Saturday's unveiling that it was "quite a ride" to get here.  However... a year after a Facebook page gained international notariety... and, a new sculptor was found... the new statue is in place.  Schrecengost says he set up the panel to decide on someone new to make the new sculpture.  But... State Senator Cathy Young says it was a fellow Senator from the Hudson Valley region who got the ball-rolling on hiring Carolyn Palmer. Palmer was a finalist to be hired... but, she also urged Schrecengost and the others to make a decision soon because... to have the sculpture ready for the Lucille Ball Comedy Festival Weekend was going to be tight.  In fact... she says it usually takes about a year to make a life-sized sculpture.  In this case... she says it took her about nine-months to complete.  The sculpture done by Dave Poulin has been retired to another part of the park until the new, National Comedy Center is able to take accept "Scary Lucy" to be put on display.

 

An electric outage late last Saturday night cut power to a large area of downtown Jamestown.  The Jamestown Post-Journal reports a breaker apparently went off around 10:30 PM... causing the outage... which affected an area from about Spring Street to the Washington Street... and, went down to the area of Second Street where the newspaper is headquartered.  A crew from the Board of Public Utilities arrived... and, power was restored about 1 AM Sunday.  The Post-Journal reports a comedian from Buffalo, performing during the Lucille Ball Comedy Festival, John Lockwood, took his show to the street in light of the outage.  Lockwood said "This is the black-out comedy show, folks," as he performed on the street corner.

 

New York is requiring that each public and charter school post the phone number for the state's child-abuse hotline in a prominent location where students can see it.  The law, recently signed by Governor Andrew Cuomo, directs the state education commissioner to issue related regulations.  Legislative sponsors say one in four girls and one in six boys nationwide are molested, mainly at home, and the notices offer a simple and effective way to let victims report abuse.  The statewide toll-free number is 1-800-342-3720.  The Office of Children and Family Services says the hotline receives calls of alleged abuse or maltreatment around the clock every day.

 

A former firefighter says he's innocent of arson charges in the blaze that damaged the western New York apartment of a volunteer firefighter who said he received a racist, threatening letter earlier this week.  North Tonawanda police say 39-year-old Matthew Jurado was arrested Thursday and charged in the fire at 28-year-old Kenneth Walker's home.  WGRZ-TV reports Jurado is Walker's neighbor and the two know each other.  A judge entered a not guilty plea Friday morning for Jurado because he didn't have an attorney for his arraignment.  He's being held in jail on 50-thousand dollars bail.  Police say Jurado confessed to setting the fire.  But they say he didn't claim responsibility for an anonymous letter that Walker said was left in his mailbox on Monday.  It told him to resign because he's black.  Investigators say Jurado told them a friend of his was behind the letter.

 

The 72nd Gerry Rodeo wrapped up successfully on Saturday. That's Rodeo Chairman, Tom Atwell.  A total of 185 competitors competed for 61 thousand dollars in prize money.  J.R. Myers of Felton, Pennsylvania was named 'All-Aound Cowboy'... winning the most money while competing in at least two events. Total attendance for the rodeo was around 7300, with just over 3000 roast beef dinners served.  All proceeds benefit the Gerry Fire Department.

 

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News Headlines for Sat., Aug. 6, 2016

2016 Olympics underway... but, Jenn Suhr won't leave for Rio until Monday...

Some 70,000 people were at the stadium in Rio de Janeiro last night for the opening ceremonies of the 2016 Summer Olympics... and, many in the village of Fredonia are following the activities very closely.  That's because one of their own will be involved in her third summer Olympics.  Jenn Suhr lives near Rochester, but she remains close to her hometown as she goes for her third Olympic medal.  Jenn's father, Mark Stuczynski, says she wasn't in Rio for the opening ceremonies... and, will be arriving in Rio on Monday.  Stuczynski says she'll be staying on the cruise ship there being used by many of the U-S athletes because many of the athlete dorms are not finished.  Suhr won a Silver Medal in the 2008 games in Beijing... and, the gold in the 2012 games in London.  The pole vaulter will also have to wait a while longer before she can compete this time around.  Qualifying isnt until Aug. 16, and the medal round begins on Friday, Aug. 19.  Mark Stuczynski says Jenn and the entire family are please with the support shown by the community... with many residents digging out their signs from her previous Olympic appearances.


City man jailed for contempt after call to check on well-being of adults, children at eastside home in Jamestown...

A call to check on the well-being of two children possibly being taken care of by adults allegedly using narcotics has led to the arrest of a Jamestown man on several charges.  City police responded to the scene at 633 East Second St. late Wednesday morning... and, found several hypodermic needles on the floor in the bathroom.  There were four adults and two children in the apartment... including Shane Eshbach.  However... police say there was a valid order of protection for Eshbach to stay away from the residence.  He began fighting with officers when he was being arrested... and, was charged with obstruction.  Police say Eshbach was also charged with first-degree criminal contempt... aggravated Family Offense... and, two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.  He was arraigned and jailed pending further court action.


Gerace says Chautauqua County Jail is over capacity...

There's been some success in controlling the population at the Chautauqua County Jail... but, it's now again overcrowded.  That from Sheriff Joe Gerace... who oversees the jail operation in Mayville... who says they have recently had to board out some inmates.  Gerace says six total are being housed elsewhere... at county expense.  He says they often have more activity during the Summer... but, don't see jail levels go up until after Summer.  Gerace believes one problem has been "high bails" for some defendants.  In addition... Gerace says there's been a position that's opened up in the Public Defender's Office.  He says a woman who was the Defender's Advocate... and, worked hard for Alternatives to Incarceration... recently retired.  Gerace says he hopes that position is filled again soon.  He says he's met with the county's Public Defender and Acting District Attorney about the situation.  Gerace adds he's be meeting soon with officials from the Eighth Judicial District.


Onoville Marina to close early for Season due to low water, rainfall totals...

The lack of rain this Summer is forcing a local recreational boating location in the Jamestown-area to close early this season.  The Onoville Marina on the Alleghany Reservoir in Cattaraugus County will be closing on August 15th because they're about 4 to 5 inches below normal rainfall.  That from Marina Manager Jim Welch... who's worked there the past 20 years.  He's been manager the past four... and, says he's seen the water level lower... but, adds it wasn't this early in the season.  Welch says the water will only drop further without any significant rain, because the reservoir is part of the Flood Control program for the Alleghany River in Warren County.  Welch says... without rain... more water is being let out through the Kinzua Dam than is flowing into the river behind it.  He says the U-S Army Corp of Engineers tells him that they would need about 9-inches of rain 'run-off' to recharge the reservoir to 100-percent.  He says they are currently about 8 to 9-feet below their normal level.

 

Former firefighter pleads not guilty to setting fire to black volunteer firefighter's home in North Tonawanda...

A former firefighter says he's innocent of arson charges in the blaze that damaged the western New York apartment of a volunteer firefighter who said he received a racist, threatening letter earlier this week.  North Tonawanda police say 39-year-old Matthew Jurado was arrested Thursday and charged in the fire at 28-year-old Kenneth Walker's home.  WGRZ-TV reports Jurado is Walker's neighbor and the two know each other.  A judge entered a not guilty plea Friday morning for Jurado because he didn't have an attorney for his arraignment.  He's being held in jail on 50-thousand dollars bail.  Police say Jurado confessed to setting the fire.  But they say he didn't claim responsibility for an anonymous letter that Walker said was left in his mailbox on Monday.  It told him to resign because he's black.  Investigators say Jurado told them a friend of his was behind the letter.


Health Insurace rates in NYS to increase by 8 to 17-percent next year...

New York regulators have set health insurance rates for 2017, rising about 8-percent for small group plans that enroll more than one-million New Yorkers... and, almost 17 percent for individual plans with about 350,000 people enrolled.  The Department of Financial Services says rising health care costs and termination of the federal reinsurance program are pushing up rates.

 

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WJTN News Headlines

State environmental officials have issued a drought warning for a large portion of western New York.  The state Department of Environmental Conservation's drought warning covers both Chautauqua and Cattaraugus County's... as well as Allegany, Cayuga, Chemung, Erie, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Niagara, Onondaga, Ontario, Orleans, Oswego, Seneca, Schuyler, Steuben, Tompkins, Wayne, Wyoming and Yates.  The rest of the state remains under a drought watch.  Recent rains helped ease drought conditions in much of the state, but drier conditions persist in western New York.  While there are no state-mandated water restrictions, New York residents are strongly encouraged to voluntarily conserve water.  Local water restriction may apply.

 

The drought that’s been gripping most of Western New York -- including Chautauqua County -- is having an impact on area grape vineyards, with some of the plants starting to show signs of stress.  Viticulture Extension Specialist Luke Haggerty with the Lake Erie Regional Grape Program in the town of Portland says some growers benefited from the spotty showers and thunderstorms that hit the area last Sunday.  But... others missed out.  Haggerty says overall, the rainfall deficit has led to a smaller berry size this year and that will lead to a smaller crop. Haggerty says rain is needed soon because the grape crop will be reaching a critical stage in about two weeks... once the vines start producing the sugars for the grapes.  Showers and thunderstorms are in the forecast for tonight.  Forecasters say some of the storms may be capable of producing downpours, but they will likely be scattered in nature.  

 

A Jamestown man is jailed without bail for allegedly threatening several people with a machette during a large fight Wednesday night on the city's northside.  Jamestown police say they were called to the scene of the fight -- near the intersection of Isabella Avenue and Lafayette Street -- just after 5 PM.  On arrival... officers say they had to break-up an argument between about 30 to 40 people.  Their investigation led to the arrest of 27 year-old Jesus Serrano... who was allegedly found with the machette... which he was waving in a threatening manner towards other people.  Serrano was found a short distance away... and, arrested without without incident.  He's being held on charges of third-degree criminal posession of a weapon... and, second-degree menacing.

 

Local sales tax revenues have slowed across New York state for the first six-months of 2016... but, Chautauqua County is leading the way with an 11.6-percent increase.  State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli says the county's increase has been fueled -- in large part -- by an increase in the local share from 3.5-to 4-percent over 2015.  While that's good news for Chautauqua County... County Executive Vince Horrigan says that means those revenues are "right in line" for what was projected in this year's budget. There's also the Gerry Rodeo... and the first-ever Dragon Boat races... and, the new Lucy Statue unveiling in Celoron -- which takes place on Saturday.  As for the 2017 budget... Horrigan says he begins face-to-face meetings with department heads about the budget within the next week.  He says they're looking to keep property taxes flat to keep in line with their agreement with the state to keep the local sales tax at 4-percent.  DiNapoli says state-wide... sales tax growth slowed from 2.6-percent in the first quarter to point-8 percent in the second.

 

The first-ever Chautauqua Lake Dragon Boat Race and Festival will sandwich a much-anticipated event in the village of Celoron this weekend.  Mayor Scot Schrecengost says the Dragon Boat activities get underway this afternoon at 3 in Lucille Ball Memorial Park.  Schrecengost says there'll be practice for the participants, along with food and other vendors, and entertainment in the Desi Arnaz Bandshell.  He says activities kick into full-gear Saturday morning. The new statue of Lucille Ball will replace one that was so hated it was dubbed ``Scary Lucy.'' Sculptor Carolyn Palmer hopes her tribute will please fans who demanded that another artist's unflattering version be banished through a Facebook campaign.  The unveiling takes place at Noon Saturday.  Schrecengost tells us they have 24 entries for the boat race -- including a few pros -- for the race.  He adds says the regional band "We Speak Canadian" will entertain in the bandshell Friday night from 6 to 9 PM.

 

A federal judge says New York's former Senate majority leader can remain free on bail while appealing extortion and bribery convictions.  Manhattan Judge Kimba Wood ruled Thursday that Dean Skelos, a Republican, and his son Adam, had raised a substantial question on appeal in light of a recent Supreme Court ruling.  The father and son were convicted last year of extortion, conspiracy and bribery.  Earlier this year, Wood sentenced Dean Skelos to five years in prison and the son to 6 1/2 years in prison.  Another judge is deciding whether to let former New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, a Democrat, remain free pending appeal of his conviction in a $5 million bribery case.  The Supreme Court appeared to alter existing law when it recently reversed a former Virginia governor's conviction.

 

In addition to Dunkirk... Chautauqua County officials are also very interested in making sure that transition aid come it's way with the "mothballing" of the NRG Power Plant.  The city of Dunkirk and the Dunkirk School District are also looking to receive the state aid.  County Executive Vince Horrigan says all three should be able to shortly make formal application for the aid... which would begin with 80-percent of the lost tax revenues from the NRG Power plant being mothballed. Horrigan again expressed his appreciation to State Senator Cathy Young for pushing modifications to the transition aid so that local governments and school district's affected by the "mothballing" of a plant would qualify for aid.  The county... city of Dunkirk and Dunkirk School Districts have already expressed their desire to get the aid.  However... Horrigan says they and the others... need to also work on not being so dependant on that aid down the road.

 

We are both sad and stunned here at Media One Group to hear of the sudden passing of a former James Broadcasting employee.  Steve Ehmke... who went by the name Dave McKay for the past 24 years at Tampa, Florida radio station WQYK-FM... died early Thursday.  The Tampa Bay Times reports a co-worker found him in his St. Petersburg apartment about 6:30 AM.  The worker went there after Steve failed to show up to work.  Steve co-hosted the "Dave and Veronica" morning show at WQYK... a powerhouse country station in the Tampa Market... the past several years.  He was 55.  Foul play is not suspected.  He worked at WJTN and SE-93 from about 1982 to 1985... and, was the morning man on SE-93 for a few years.  Our condolences to Steve's family and close friends.

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WJTN News Headlines

A Jamestown man faces numerous criminal and traffic charges after he allegedly led police on a high-speed pursuit from the city's westside to northside yesterday morning.  City police say they tried to stop the vehicle... being driven by 26 year-old Nicholas Brown... on Fairmount Avenue -- near Hall Avenue... shortly before 9 AM.  Officers say Brown allegedly sped off... and, led police on a chase that ended at Sturges Street -- near Crossman.  They say the suspect then led them on a short foot chace before they were able to catch... and, arrest him.  Brown faces two counts of obstructing governmental administration... and, one count each of resisting arrest... reckless driving... and, third-degree unlawfully fleeing a police officer in a motor vehicle.  He faces nearly a dozen others.  He was jailed pending arraignment.

 

American's see a lot of the "surface noise" going on in the Middle East... mainly in Syria and Libya to name a couple.  However... there are "tectonic shifts" taking place in society there that are being driven by a divide between the younger populations... and, the goverments of those countries.  That from Wednesday's featured lecturer's at Chautauqua Institution.  Michelle Dunne is involved with the Carnegie Endowment's Middle East Program... which is a "think-tank...." Kareem Ibrahim is an architect who is the project leader for Inner City Development with the group TADAMUN.  Ibrahim says there were success stories after the 2011 "Arab Spring..." but, he adds in places where it worked... there are still issues.  In big cities like Cairo... he says there are issues such as access to good water.  Michelle Dunne and Kareem Ibrahim gave the Middle Eastern perspective for "The Future of Cities" Week at Chautauqua Institution.  Both spoke earlier with our Dennis Webster on our "Chautauqua Today" program.

 

New York lawmakers are criticizing Goveronr Andrew Cuomo's big economic development programs after reports that show lackluster results... and, failures in oversight.  The Assembly's Committee on Economic Development, Job Creation, Commerce and Industry held a hearing on the Democratic governor's initiatives Wednesday in Albany.  Cuomo's top economic development official was grilled by lawmakers... who called for big changes.  Some others have also called for the programs should be scrapped.  A state report quietly released last month found that the Start-Up NY job creation program generated only 408 new jobs in its first two years.

 

There are still tickets available... but, they are going fast for the three headliners performing at this week's 25th anniversary Lucille Ball Comedy Festival in Jamestown.  The more than 50 events and programs began last niight with a gala... and, get into full gear today.  Lucille Ball-Desi Arnaz Comedy Center Director Journey Gunderson says they're ready to welcome stand-up comics Lewis Black... Trevor Noah... and, Brian Regan to Jamestown.  Regan will do the big show at 8:30 PM Saturday at the Jamestown Saving Bank Arena. Political satirist Lewis Black will perform at 7:30 tonight at the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts... while Trevor Noah... who now hosts "The Daily Show" on Comedy Center... will be on stage at the Reg beginning at 8:30 PM Friday.  Also this weekend... Gunderson says there will be two National Comedy Center "dialogues..." which will include the daughters of the late Lenny Bruce, George Carlin, and Richard Pryor.  The event coincides with the 50th anniversary of the passing of Lenny Bruce... and, begins at 6PM Friday at the Reg Lenna.  There will also be late night comedy... and, other events.  For more information... go to LucyComedyFest-dot-COM... or call 484-0800.

 

Two Jamestown firefighters have become the first duo in more than three-decades to receive one of the area's most prestigeous community service awards to labor.  International Association of Firefighters Localk-1772 members Shawn Tibbitts... and, Kyle Sholl were presented the Joseph Mason Award during the annual Salute to Labor Dinner last night in Mayville.  It's presented by the United Way of Southern Chautauqua County... and, Director Tori Irgang says the pair launched a fund-raiser last year to help families battling childhood cancer.
Tibbetts says he and Sholl began the "Chautauqua Project" while they were kayaking down the Conewango River one day last year... and, they decided to kayak around Chautauqua Lake to raise the money.  He adds they also decided to do it for charity.   Sholl says... thanks to several sponsors and donors... they were able to raise 15-hundred dollars for the effort.  Local companies... and, individuals supported the effort.  He says it took about eight-hours to complete the trip.  Irgang says both are also heavily involved in other charity work as well.

 

New York's state attorney general is targeting companies advertising ineffective insect repellents to cash in on concerns over the Zika virus.  Attorney General Eric Schneiderman says his office has sent letters to seven companies, telling them to stop marketing products as ``Zika-preventive'' or ``Zika-protective.''  The tropical mosquito that carries Zika is not common in New York. The virus can affect pregnant women, causing birth defects.
 People in Zika-affected areas are advised to wear long pants and long-sleeved shirts and use insect repellent.  The state has confirmed 537 cases, all apparently connected to travel to affected areas.  Five cases were sexually transmitted.  The Centers for Disease Control Prevention says repellents typically providing long-lasting protection contain DEET, Picaridin, oil of lemon eucalyptus or IR3535.  It lists brand names on its website.

 

New York state has confirmed 537 cases of Zika so far _ though officials say all appear to be connected to travel to affected areas and there's no evidence the virus is spreading through local mosquitoes.  Governor Andrew Cuomo and state health Commissioner Howard Zucker delivered the update Tuesday.  While the specific mosquito species known to spread Zika is not native to New York... a related species is present in downstate areas.   Officials say residents can reduce the risk by eliminating standing water and using larvicide to kill young mosquitoes.  They also encourage people to wear repellent and long sleeves when outside, particularly during the day.  Cuomo adds the state is also providing testing to pregnant women at risk of exposure to the virus, which has been linked to birth defects.

 

The funding was included in the state budget that was passed back in April, but Dunkirk city officials haven't received any word on the status of transition aid because of the moth-balling of the NRG plant. Mayor Willie Rosas says the city, the county and the City School District are working together to make their case. He says without transition aid, the city is facing a major budget shortfall for 2017. Rosas is meeting with County Executive Vince Horrigan Thursday to discuss the issue of transition aid.  The mayor says the city has prepared a letter of cessation to assist the efforts.  Even with the transition aid, the city will face about a half-million dollar shortfall heading into 2017.

 

Musician Erik Lundquist of Jamestown will be joining the 'top brass' of the U.S. Air Force. Erik was selected from a pool of 40 applicants, 19 of whom auditioned in Washington earlier this week.  He was back home Wednesday to play in the Jamestown Municipal Band. Lundquist is 2009 graduate of Jamestown High School and holds Bachelor's and Master's degrees from the University of North Texas.  He says he's been wanting to play in a military band since first hearing them at Chautauqua Institution in his youth.  He'll now be performing for a lot of important events. Those events include next year's Presdential inauguration.  Erik is the son of Rick and Patti Lundquist.  He leaves for Basic Training in October. 

 

 

 

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WJTN News Headlines

Two men have been arrested in simultaneous raids in downtown Jamestown for allegedly trafficking cocaine... and, one also allegedly peddling bath salts.  City Police Captain Bob Samuelson says members of the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force, and the state Police C-NET Team... conducted the raids with the help of the JPD SWAT Team... about 6 AM Tuesday.  Samuelson says they arrested 31 year-old Rashid Jabbar at 734 East Second Street. Samuelson adds that... at the 801 West Fifth Street location... members of the task force, and City and State Police K-9 units... also found a quantity of prescription pills, and a small amount -- 2 grams -- of the synthetic drug known as "bath salts."   He says they also found a stun gun at that location.  Samuelson says they're glad to have that off the street.  He says both are charged with third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and criminally using drug paraphernalia.  Chandler is also charged with criminal possession of a weapon.  Anyone with information on illegal narcotics trafficking in the immediate Jamestown area is asked to call 483-TIPS... that's 483-8477.

 

Two former Columbian officials who helped lead a political transformation in the city of Medellin says their country -- as a whole -- is now moving in "the right direction."   For three decades... Medellin has been wracked by violence due to the drug trade, and political corruption.  However... former Mayor Sergio Fajarado... and, Columbian Ambassador to the U-S... Carolina Barco says they now have a "wonderful country."  Fajardo says that's because they were educated "outside" the country. In fact... Barco was born in Massachusetts... the daughter of former Columbian President Virgilio Barco... and, says the problems started when former Drug Lord Pablo Escobar gained political influence... and, Medellin became the "murder capitol" of the world.  She says they took to the streets to "push back" against the corruption.  Fajardo says "walking the streets" allowed them to build their political movement.  Both spoke as part of "The Future of Cities" Week at Chautauqua Institution... and, also spoke Tuesday morning with our Dennis Webster and Matt Warren.

 

At one time... the Medellin Cartel that was controlled by Pablo Escobar was supplying 80-percent of the cocaine being bought illegally in the United States.  Cocaine remains a problem in the U-S... but, the major problem is now with Heroin and other Opioid drugs.  Sergio Fajarado and Carolina Barco both say that curbing demand is the way to stem the flow of drugs into the U-S.  Barco says fighting the drug lords helps... but, it's not enough. Fajardo says the fight needs to take place in the individual communities that have the problems... using prevention, education... and, treating the problem as a health issue, as well.  Both were featured lecturer's Tuesday at Chautauqua.

 

A Bemus Point man had to be helped from the waters of Chautauqua Lake early last evening after he fell off a small fishing boat near Oriental Park.  Sheriff's Department navigation officers say the unidentied, 60 year-old man was unable to get back into the boat... and, had been floating in the water about 30 minutes.  Deputies say the man complained of leg numbness and was unable to stand.  Officers got into the water with him... and, lifted him into a patrol boat and met Bemus Point fire rescue personnel.  He was then evaluated and assisted by the rescue crews.

 

An investigation is underway into a fatal, head-on crash on Route 5 in the town of Brant.  The crash... which happened shortly before 9 Tuesday morning... sent three people to the hospital.  The Erie County Sheriff's Office says one of the victims, a female, was pronounced dead on arrival at the Erie County Medical Center.  The names of the victims have not been released at this time.  A portion of Route 5, between Route 438 and Route 429, was closed for several hours. 

 

The Chautauqua County Industrial Development Agency has acquired 66-acres of land from Bush Industries in the town of Ellicott to market as a "shovel-ready" site.  County Executive Vince Horrigan says the IDA board Tuesday approved a resolution to acquire the property... located on Peck-Settlement Road in the Mason Industrial Park.  Bush Industries' Chief Executive Officer Jim Garde says "we were happy to partner with the IDA so they could purchase the unused land behind our corporate facility."  Horrigan adds that the county legislature recently accepted 200-thousand dollars in grant funds from Empire State Development for infrastructure improvements to enhance shovel ready sites.  He adds the IDA will work closely with the county on this prime Industrial-Commercial property, to take this shovel ready site to the "next level."  Those include putting an access road in place... along with utilities... and, hiring local engineers.

 

Several of the top rodeo cowboys and cowgirls will be in Chautauqua County over the next several days for the 72nd annual Gerry Rodeo.  The longest-running rodeo east of the Mississippi River gets underway tonight at the Rodeo grounds on Route 60.  Spokesman Paul Cooley says there are nearly 200 participants signed up... with several entered into two or more events.  Thanks to their sponsors... Cooley says they're able to offer a 45-thousand dollar purse this year. Cooley says they have plenty of entrants for their seven different catagories... including 64 women barrel racers.  The event has come a long way since 1945... when a man from out west -- Jim Eskew -- brought up the idea of a rodeo as a fund-raiser for the new Gerry Volunteer Fire Department.  The rodeo runs now through Saturday nights... with performances each night beginning at 8 PM.  The fire department's famous beef barbecue will be available to purchase each night beginning at 5 PM.  Cooley says "combo" tickets for both the rodeo and barbecue are available.  For more information call 985-4847... or go on-line to Gerryrodeo-dot-ORG.

 


Two big block parties by Neighborhood Watch Group's highlighted the 31st annual "National Night Out" against crime in Jamestown last night.  It provides an opportunity for police officials and city residents to meet informally to talk about ways to combat crime in their neighborhoods.  It also serves to encourage people to take a stand against crime in their communities.  Jamestown Police Captain Bob Samuelson says it's goes hand-in-hand with the city's growing Neighborhood Watch program. Samuelson says last night's activities on Chestnut Street ran from 6 to 8 PM.  Chief Harry Snellings was also to make an appearance during the Harris Avenue during the evening.

 

A western New York man is dead after state police say his tractor overturned and landed on him.  Police say 62-year-old Richard Gasbarre was operating his 1953 Ford Jubilee tractor while tilling his backyard in Bolivar on Monday afternoon, when he backed over a break wall, causing the tractor to overturn.  The Allegany County coroner pronounced him dead at the scene.

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WJTN News Headlines

A Forestville man was arrested early last weeked for allegedly having sex with a minor girl.  Sheriff's officers say they served an arrest warrant on 19 year-old Trevor Grupa at a location on Prospect Road in Forestville.  Deputies say Grupa was sought on two counts of second-degree rape... second and third-degree sexual abuse... and, endangering the welfare of a child.  Grupa was found at the Prospect Road residence... and, arrested without incident.  He was arraigned and sent to the county jail on 10-thousand dollars bail... pending a future appearance in county court.

 

Governor Andrew Cuomo has directed state authorities to prevent nearly 3-thousand registered sex offenders now on parole from playing Pokemon Go in an effort to safeguard children who play.  The Department of Corrections and Community Services is making that a condition of supervised release from state prison for all sex offenders.  The state said late Monday that county probation offices should adopt the same policy.  Cuomo has also sent a letter to software developer Niantic, Inc. requesting help prohibiting sexual predators from playing the online game, where players roam through the physical world searching for virtual Pokemon creatures that appear when they go to certain locations.   State Senator Jeff Klein, a Bronx Democrat who raised similar concerns last week, says New York already prohibits high-level offenders from using social media.

 

Parts of Chautauqua and Cattaraugus counties were under Flash Flood Warnings Sunday afternoon... but, no significant damage was reported.  Forcaster David Church with the National Weather Service in Buffalo says the slow moving thunderstorms contained torrential rains... and, says the storms were very localized.  He says that will NOT  have much of an impact on the severe drought... because the coverage area was spotty.  He says some places may have gotten 2 to 3 inches.  There was a little bit of rain around during the day Monday... but, again nothing that made much difference in the drought conditions.

 

A 4-year-old boy from Ohio suffered a severe cut to his groin, and a broken ankle following a freak water-skiing accident on Chautauqua lake Sunday afternoon.  The Sheriff's Office Marine Division was called to the scene -- near Chautauqua Institution -- just before 12:30 PM.  Deputies say a family was tubing on the late... with several children on board... when they decided to switch to water skiing.  Officers say the tube was brought into the vessel, and placed at the bow while they skiied.  However... the 4-year-old began playing under the tube when the wind from the boat traveling down the lake -- combined with the actual wind -- lifted the tube with the youngster hanging onto it.  Officers say the boy struck the split windshield on the boat, and was hurt.  The force of the incident threw the boy and the tube into the lake.  Deputies say that, due to the fact the child was wearing a life jacket, and the family had a quick response -- he was immediately pulled out and, rushed to shore.  They were helped by Chautauqua Institution police, and, the Chautauqua Fire Department... and, the boy was flown by Starflight Helicopter to Buffalo Women and Children's Hospital.

 

The American Red Cross is experiencing a blood shortage... both nationally and locally.  The Red Cross has issued an emergency request for blood and platelet donations.  Communications Manager Patty Corvaia  says there are two reasons for the shortage.  The first is that hospitals have been needing more blood than expected this summer... and, second is that people are busy with summer plans and don't get out to donate.  Corvaia says that while they need donations of all blood types... O Negative is the most helpful. Corvaia says it's easy to schedule an appointment to give blood online at Redcrossblood.org or by calling 1-800 Red Cross.  There is also a downloadable app that lets you know what happens with the blood you donate.  The American Red Cross has two donation opportunities locally this month.  The first on August 3rd at the Chautauqua Volunteer Fire Department... and, the second on August 13th at the Bemus Point Fire Department.

 

A Sinclairville man suffered non-life threatening injuries when the all-terrain vehicle he was riding Sunday night went out of control, and flipped over.  Sheriff's officers say they were called to the scene on a "well road" off North Hill Road in the town of Charlotte shortly before 8:30 PM... and, found the ATV had come to rest on it's rollbars.  Deputies say 34 year-old Timothy Lerow was pinned under the vehicle.  Lerow was taken to Brook's Memorial Hospital in Dunkirk for treatment.  His passenger, 63 year-old Richard Langworthy of Sinclair Drive, Sinclairville, was not hurt.  Deputies say Lerow was allegedly operating the ATV at an unsafe speed when the accident occured... but, no charges have yet been filed.

 

The United Way of Southern Chautauqua County's annual campaign season is officially underway with the kick-off to the effort's Pacesetter's Campaign.  A dozen representatives from local companies and organizations -- involved with the campaign --  met with United Way leaders at Wegman's Supermarket Monday afternoon.  Local Architect Paul Hedin and his wife, Anne, are heading up the General Campaign... and, helped welcome the Pacesetters. Anne Hedin says they've been involved with the campaign for several years... and, are looking forward to heading up this year's General Campaign... starting in mid-September.  United Way Executive Director Tori Irgang says this year's goal is the same as last year's... 1.3-million dollars.  Irgang says they hope the Pacesetter's can raise about 130 thousand dollars or more by the General Campaign start date of September 14th.  The Pacesetter's campaign runs until that date... and, then indivdual company and other United Way General Campaign activities begin.  This year... Irgang says they're raising the money for 42 local programs at 25 partner agencies in the Jamestown-area.  For more information on the United Way... call 483-1561... or go on-line to UWayscc-dot-ORG.

 

Officials spent Monday afternoon looking for a boy who allegedly jumped off the Hickory Street Bridge in Warren. The Times Observer reports that police received a call about 3:30pm that reported the incident.  The caller said the boy jumped off of the west side of the bridge.  Officers searched the North bank of the river, but found no sign that the jumper had emerged from the water.  The City of Warren Fire Department was called in to search with their boat, and video surveillance camera's from nearby businesses are being checked to see if anyone matching the boy's desription was seen in that area around the time of the incident. Warren Police Chief Raymond Zydonik stresses that jumping off the Hickory Street Bridge is just a bad idea.


 

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WJTN News Headlines

One person was shot... while two others have been arrested... after an attempted robbery, and fight in the village of Brocton escalated into a shooting incident.  Sheriff's officers were called to the scene on Central Avenue shortly after 11 PM last Friday for the fight.  However... on arrival they found that one of three people visiting two people at the home was allegedly shot by one of the residents.  Deputies say the other two ran from the home... and, both were later found and arrested in Westfield.   The person shot was not identified... and,  was flown by Starflight to the Erie County Medical Center for non-life threatening injuries.  The two men arrested... 35 year-old Lamar Matthews of Thayer Road, Portland, and 39 year-old Shane Wynn-Hopkins of Meadville, Pennsylvania... are both charged with third-degree attempted robbery.  Wynn-Hopkins was also charged with second-degree burglary.  They were arraigned and sent to the county jail on 50-thousand dollars bail each.  The third person has not yet been charged... and, the investigation is continuing. 

 

A Jamestown man is under arrest for allegedly trafficking cocaine to undercover police officers in the city.  Agents with the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force joined with the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force.., and, others... to raid the residence at 614 Prendergast Avenue about 7 AM Friday.  Task Force members say they found 36 year-old Efrain Mariera-Lebron inside... along with a quantity of cocaine... and, a large amount of cash, and scales to weigh narcotics.  Police say they charged Mariera-Lebron with third-degree criminal possesion... and, sale of a controlled substance.  He was arraigned, and sent to the county jail without bail.  The City Police SWAT Team... and, state Police C-NET Team were also involved in the raid.

 

Testimony has wrapped up in a legal case involving Chautauqua County and the town of Ellery... which is attempting to stop an expansion of the County Landfill.  State Supreme Court Judge Frank Sedita-the-third heard from both sides in the case this week in State Supreme Court in Mayville... with testimony concluding about mid-week.  County Executive Vince Horrigan says he feels the county presented a solid case for the expansion which would involve county owned property. The State Department of Environmental Conservation gave the County a permit for the proposed 53-acre expansion after an environmental review... but, the town argues that the state agency failed to give it a hearing in front of an administrative law judge regarding environmental issues raised by town officials.  They also argued that the DEC failed to address how to mitigate the concerns.  Horrigan says it could be several weeks before they receive a ruling from Judge Sedita.

 

A Jamestown woman has been arrested for allegedly assaulting two teenagers -- and, choking one of them -- at a camping area in the town of Ellery.  State Police in Jamestown say they were called to the scene last Saturday... and, arrested 28 year-old Brittany Love.  Troopers accuse Love of entering a camper at the unidentified location... and, she grabbed one of the teens by the neck, and choked the youth for a period of time.  They say Love then allegedly struck that subject... and, then struck and scratched the other teen.  Both victims were under 17 years of age.  Love was arrested for endangering the welfare of a child... second-degree harassment... and, criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation.  She was arraigned in Ellery Town Court... and, sent to the county jail with bail to be set... pending a future court appearance

 

Securing the nation's borders would not only help the problems caused by illegal immigration... but, it would also help stem the United States' major drug problem.  Those are the feelings of Republican U-S Senate candidate Wendy Long... who is opposing Democratic incumbant Chuck Schumer in this November's election.  Speaking recently with Media One Group News... Long was asked about her top issues.  She says securing the border is number-one. Long also says that people here illegally often take jobs away from Americans.  She says there also needs to be complete reform of a tax system that is now totally corrupt... and, benefits people like Schumer... who help campaign donors with favorable tax laws.  Long says it's also time to help relieve Farmers in New York state from burdensome regulations, and tax laws.  She feels Schumer is a "professional politician..." who is detacted from his constituents in New York State.  She is running on the Republican, Conservative and Reform Parties lines... and, you can find out more on-line at Wendylong-dot-COM. 

 

U-S Senator Charles Schumer says federal regulators are too slow getting bad food off the shelves.  The New York Democrat is calling for the U.S. Food and Drug Administration to review its recall process from top to bottom to determine if it's doing enough to prevent contamination-related food illnesses.  The action follows a preliminary report by the Office of Inspector General for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services suggesting the FDA has taken far too long to initiate food recalls.  Schumer notes that a 21-state E. coli outbreak linked to tainted flour began in December but the recall wasn't issued until May.  According to the FDA... at least 57 products have been recalled since May 31st due to listeria, salmonella and other bacteria.

 

Work is moving ahead on the North County Water District.  Chautauqua County legislators approved a resolution this past week to provide interim funding... and, to establish capital accounts for the district.  County Executive Vince Horrigan says he also had a meeting with state officials in Buffalo for an update on the project. While the project is moving ahead without the village of Fredonia... Horrigan isn't closing the door on any future involvement by the village.  Horrigan says O'Brien and Gere is doing some analysis on Fredonia's system, and village officials are awaiting that information.  Otherwise... he says it's "full speed ahead" for the rest of the district.  Horrigan says the district is looking for government efficiency grants, especially when it comes to some of water metering costs that will be involved in the project.

 

The cigarette tax in Pennsylvania is going up by a buck per pack, giving smokers one more reason to quit or cross the border to buy.  The tax will be 2-dollars-60 cents... starting today... from $1.60 now.  It's the largest-single increase on the state's smokers since Pennsylvania first imposed a cigarette excise tax in 1935.  For Democratic Governor Tom Wolf and the Republican-controlled Legislature, it was a step toward addressing a long-term deficit.  Pack-a-day smoker Brent Johnson of suburban Harrisburg says he won't change his habit.  But... he feels it isn't right for policymakers to target smokers when they have other options to balance the budget.

 

 


 

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