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Town of Hamburg police quickly arrested two young Woodlawn men on arson charges early today following a fire that started in a storage shed behind the former Dickie's Donuts shop at 3333 Lakeshore Road.

Flames spread to a nearby car dealer's lot, where two vehicles were destroyed, but the Woodlawn Volunteer Fire Co. kept the fire from the former doughnut shop.

Detective Glenn Zawierucha and Officer Pete Dienes charged Michael Bannister, 21, and Nicholas Breidenstein, 20, with arson, following the fire, which was reported at 5:43 a.m., according to Lt. Steve Mikac.

Police had to close some lanes on Lakeshore Road, but they reopened in time for the bulk of the morning rush hour.

Police detective recovers
gun, seizes man after chase

A Buffalo police detective interrupted a young man's planned retribution against three men who allegedly had beaten him up -- and recovered the gun he planned to use for it Monday afternoon, authorities said.

Detective Thomas McCarthy of the Auto Theft Squad was driving in the area of Jefferson Avenue and Clinton Street shortly before 3 p.m. when he noticed three men running from the area, police said. Then a fourth man popped up between some houses; he was attempting to load a handgun.

The gunman was moving to cross the street when the detective cut him off, police said. Realizing the man in the car was a police officer, the gunman took off running.

The gun was dropped during the course of the chase, which went over several fences, police said. McCarthy recovered the pistol and made it back to his car. He caught up with the suspect on Monroe Street, where Ferry-Fillmore District Officers Daniel O'Neill and Julie Ledwin helped with the arrest.

Brandon Brown, 19, of Sumner Place was charged with criminal possession of a weapon and obstructing governmental administration.

Police said they are tracing ownership of the handgun -- a 9 mm weapon from the World War II era. It had one live round in the chamber and six in the clip, according to police reports.

Brown reportedly told police that he had been "jumped" the day before by the three men he was pursuing. Police caught up with one of the three later on; he declined to press further charges.

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