Starpoint campus evacuated after student pulls alarm
PENDLETON -- Students on the campus of the Starpoint Central School were evacuated briefly after a high school student set a small fire, then pulled a fire alarm Wednesday afternoon.
A 15-year-old girl has been suspended and faces a superintendent's hearing, according to Superintendent Douglas C. Whelan.
Whelan said witnesses reported that the girl lit a napkin on fire as she was walking out of the cafeteria following lunch, then pulled the alarm. Because all district buildings are connected to the fire alarm system, everyone was evacuated, said Whelan.
Whelan said school officials were able to alert local firefighters that there was no emergency.
Sales to officer by teen lead to drug charges
LOCKPORT -- A Niagara Falls teenager pleaded guilty to two drug felonies Wednesday in Niagara County Court.
Michael A. Lorraine, 18, of LaSalle Avenue, admitted to fifth-degree criminal sale and possession of a controlled substance. Judge Peter L. Broderick Sr. scheduled sentencing for May 11.
Lorraine was charged with selling crack cocaine to an undercover Niagara Falls police officer April 13; selling fake crack May 3; and possessing about 2 grams of the drug at 17th Street and Pierce Avenue in Niagara Falls July 21.
2 plead guilty in beating of man outside bar
LOCKPORT -- Two men have pleaded guilty to misdemeanors in connection with the June 1 baseball bat beating of a Lockport man outside Jimmy B's on South Transit Road in Pendleton.
Derek S. Kast, 21, of Crosby Road, Lockport, and James R. Carroll, 20, of Human Road, Cambria, pleaded guilty to third-degree assault Tuesday, Assistant District Attorney Charles F. Pitarresi said. Niagara County Judge Peter L. Broderick Sr. scheduled sentencing for April 26.
Pitarresi said Kast and Carroll agreed to testify against their three co-defendants: Matthew J. Vanderhinder, 21, of Creek Road, Porter; Zachery K. Barrand, 22, of Upper Mountain Road, Pekin; and Kristin Pattison, 18, of Carter Drive, Cambria.
They are charged with second-degree assault and fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon. Pattison also was charged with fourth-degree criminal facilitation for allegedly driving some of the others to the place where Daniel DeNardo of Corinthia Street was beaten.
18-pack of beer stolen in break-in at store
NIAGARA FALLS -- A Wilson Farms store at 402 Niagara St. was burglarized early Wednesday morning.
Police said the front door was smashed with a brick, and the burglar alarm activated at 4:33 a.m. An 18-pack of beer was stolen, police said.
Owner of supply firm admits Medicaid fraud
The owner of a Williamsville home care and medical supply firm gave up her claims to nearly $60,000 in overbillings to the State Medicaid System on Wednesday and pleaded guilty to a felony grand larceny charge before Erie County Judge Sheila A. DiTullio.
Sheila Paolini, 46, operator of Mill Medical Home Care and Supplies on Main Street, entered a plea to wrap up an investigation by the state attorney general's Medicaid Fraud Bureau. She was sentenced to five years' probation.
Gary A. Baldauf, head of the attorney general's Western New York Medicaid Fraud operation, said Paolini gave up her claim to the money she overbilled the state system between January 2002 and early February 2005.
Rider in disabled vehicle charged with drug count
A 20-year-old Grand Island man has been arrested on a warrant accusing him of possessing cocaine, after State Police at Niagara said they found the drug on him while checking out a disabled vehicle last month.
Troopers charged Joel M. Morris of Jenell Drive with criminal possession of a controlled substance on Tuesday. The incident occurred Jan. 26, when troopers said Morris was a passenger in the disabled vehicle in the Town of Lewiston.
Police seek woman in failed shooting try
A woman involved in a domestic dispute with another woman Tuesday evening on the West Side is being sought by homicide detectives after she pulled out a gun and tried unsuccessfully to fire it, Buffalo police said.
The incident occurred shortly before 9 p.m. at 98 W. Delavan Ave. No injuries were reported.
"She pulled a gun out of her pants and pointed it at the victim, she cocked it and it wouldn't shoot, then she pointed it out in the hallway and shot the wall," said Detective Sgt. David Lillis of the homicide squad.
Lillis said the suspect apparently used a .22-caliber semiautomatic handgun.