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NEWS IN BRIEF

Woman faces child-endangering charges

A Buffalo woman was charged with two counts of endangering the welfare of a child Saturday after Amherst police said her 3-year-old niece was found wandering in a parking lot without a coat and her 2-month-old daughter was found alone in a car.

Sharon Perry, 40, left the children in the car while she shopped in the Wal-Mart on Niagara Falls Boulevard, police said. At about 2:45 p.m., another shopper spotted the girl in the parking lot, looked after her and called police.

The children were turned over to the suspect's sister and Child Protective Services was notified for a follow-up investigation, police said.

One-car crash sends two girls to ECMC

Two 17-year-old North Collins girls were taken to Erie County Medical Center, one with a serious head injury, after their car slid off the road and struck a tree in the Town of Eden shortly before 6 p.m. Saturday.

The driver's head struck the windshield, and the passenger received possible internal injuries, but the injuries did not appear to be life-threatening, police said.

The crash occurred on Jennings Road at Town Line Road when the car went off the icy road and traveled about 150 feet in a ditch before striking the tree, police said.

The victims' names were not available. No information was available from the hospital.

Occupants flee fire in two-family home

Occupants of a two-family house at 3912 Seneca St. in West Seneca escaped safely after a fire erupted in the upper unit shortly before 4:30 p.m. Saturday.

The fire appeared to be accidental, but no cause had been determined, police said. No damage estimate was available. Volunteers from the Vigilant Fire Company were first on the scene.

Hanlon seeks seat on city school board

Denise Hanlon, who has been deeply involved in parent organizations for nearly 10 years, is seeking the North District seat in the May 1 Buffalo Board of Education election.

Chairwoman of the Special Education Parent Advisory Council, she helped draft Buffalo's parent involvement policy.

A rehabilitation nurse and an adjunct assistant professor at the University at Buffalo School of Nursing, Hanlon is seeking the seat of Deborah Bang, who is not running for re-election.

County sales tax receipts up $21 million

Erie County Comptroller Nancy A. Naples has issued a report on the county's annual sales-tax collection and distribution.

Naples said total sales tax receipts in 2000 were $448,355,751, which is $21 million higher than 1999 levels.

Erie County retained more than $230 million of that amount and distributed more than $217 million to cities, towns, villages and school districts during the year, Naples said.

Naples said sales tax revenue is linked to the economy.

"The growth in sales tax in the past two years resulted from a strong economy," she said. "Recent economic trends and Federal Reserve actions warn of an economic slowdown. Should such a slowdown persist, the county's sales tax will be down in 2001."

YWCA presents 'energizing' speaker

The YWCA of Western New York will sponsor a continental breakfast seminar featuring Gwendolyn Goldsby Grant at 9 a.m. Monday in the downtown YWCA, 190 Franklin St.

Grant, known as "the Energizer," is a psychologist, mental health educator and advice columnist for Essence magazine. She is the author of articles on human relationships and diversity, and a best-selling book, "The Best Kind of Loving."

School Spirit Week at Mount St. Mary's

Mount St. Mary's Academy in the Town of Tonawanda will celebrate School Spirit Week with five days of activities for students and faculty.

The celebration begins Monday with Pajama Day, when students can wear their favorite pajamas to school. Tuesday is "Color War" day, culminating with a 1 p.m. pep rally to honor the school's athletic teams. It will feature Student-Faculty Olympics.

Wednesday is schoolwide dress-up day. Other events include an Ash Wednesday liturgy.

Thursday is Mix and Match Uniform Day, and Friday will be the student talent show, including Irish dancers, a live band and a senior class parody of the television show "Survivor."

Woman charged in stabbing of boyfriend

A Buffalo woman was charged early Saturday with the attempted murder of a 20-year-old man she stabbed in the chest at her home Friday night, authorities said.

Latasha Bowers, 19, of the first block of Rich Street, was arrested at 5 a.m. and accused of trying to kill Anthony Green. Ferry-Fillmore District police found her hiding under the bed in her children's bedroom, officers said.

Green, who was listed in critical condition at Buffalo General Hospital late Saturday, suffered stab wounds to a lung and artery, according to police, who said the attack occurred at 7:30 p.m.

Assisting Officer Steve Sierk and Lt. Joseph Lynch in the arrest were Major Case Squad Lt. Carl Fatta and Detective Timothy Salamone, who obtained a search warrant for the Rich Street home.

Police originally had information that Green, of Girard Place, had been attacked in an attempted robbery on Genesee Street. But further investigation proved otherwise, according to police, who described Green and Bowers as "boyfriend and girlfriend."

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