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Gunman robs Mobil station at Pine and Portage

NIAGARA FALLS -- A man armed with a handgun robbed a gas station here about 7:30 p.m. Friday.

Police said the holdup occurred at Bruno's Mobil, Pine Avenue and Portage Road. The robber fled on foot. A police dog tried unsuccessfully to follow a scent from the scene, Lt. Michael Kachurek said.


Kent driver, 50, killed by car in wrong lane

ALBION -- An Orleans County man was killed early Friday morning when his car was struck by another vehicle on Route 104 in the Town of Murray, just west of the Orleans-Monroe county line.

James G. Osborne, 50, of Kent, was pulled from his vehicle by Holley and Brockport firefighters before being pronounced dead at the scene, Orleans County sheriff's officials said.

The accident occurred at about 5:35 a.m., when a westbound car driven by Stephen A. Kessler, 22, of Kendall, crossed into the eastbound lane and struck Osborne's car, deputies said.

Kessler was taken to Strong Memorial Hospital, Rochester, where police said he was in stable condition. While sheriff's officials continue to investigate the accident, a preliminary investigation found that neither alcohol nor drugs appear to be contributing factors.


Drug suspect given chance to avoid jail

LOCKPORT -- Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon Sperrazza told a Passaic Avenue man Friday he'd probably be able to avoid jail time if he stays out of trouble for the next six months.

Nicholas J. Koch, 20, who had pleaded guilty to attempted fifth-degree possession of a controlled substance, was placed on interim probation.

Koch was arrested May 3 after a traffic stop in North Tonawanda. He reportedly threw a bag of hydrocodone pills out of the car, which burst and spilled in the street.

In another drug case Friday, Antoine D. Hudson, 26, of Hyde Park Boulevard, Niagara Falls, pleaded not guilty to fifth-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance -- crack cocaine -- and unlawful possession of marijuana. He was arrested Dec. 6 on Pine Avenue in Niagara Falls.


Ex-treasurer admits theft from ambulance company

LOCKPORT -- The former treasurer of Wheatfield's Tri-Community Ambulance Company pleaded guilty Friday to stealing $12,843 from the company's funds during 2006.

Full restitution and up to a year in jail await Lawrence E. Sparks Jr., 51, of Davison Road, Lockport, when he is sentenced Jan. 3 by Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon Sperrazza.

Sparks pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of petit larceny. He made personal purchases with the company's credit card.

Public Defender David J. Farrugia said Sparks had refused a felony plea because it would mean automatic suspension or revocation of his registered nurse's license. He still might be professionally sanctioned with his misdemeanor admission, Farrugia said. Sparks works in Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Buffalo.


Guilty plea entered on felony DWI charge

LOCKPORT -- A West Avenue man pleaded guilty Friday in Niagara County Court to a felony charge of driving while intoxicated.

Tommy L. Robinson, 65, appeared before Judge Peter L. Broderick Sr., who scheduled sentencing for Jan. 4. Robinson was pulled over July 20 in the Town of Lockport.

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