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Nurse's aide accused of stealing checks

Buffalo police are investigating whether a nurse's aide hired to care for a sick woman has stolen three checks from her home.

A 89-year-old man told Ferry-Fillmore District police that he believes the nurse's aide stole his wife's $1,100 Social Security check, a $181.49 pension check and another $18.39 check.

No arrest has been made.


Stadium worker struck by vehicle dies of injuries

A 51-year-old Buffalo man, who police believe was part of the crew cleaning up Ralph Wilson Stadium after Sunday's Bills game, died early Monday after being struck by a vehicle outside the stadium late Sunday.

Darwin A. Berry, who had several listed addresses in Buffalo, died at 1:47 a.m. in Erie County Medical Center after being struck by the eastbound vehicle at 10:01 p.m. on Southwestern Boulevard near Abbott Road.

Berry was crossing the street when he was struck, and initial reports suggested that he may have walked in front of the oncoming vehicle, Orchard Park police said Monday. No charges will be filed against the driver, they said.

Orchard Park police, still unable to find any of Berry's relatives, released his name late Monday morning in hopes that family members or close friends would call them at 662-6444.


Sprinkler system puts out apartment building fire

A functioning sprinkler system was credited with putting out a fire early Monday in a seventh-floor room where residents store their garbage in a high-rise Delaware Avenue apartment building, Buffalo fire officials reported.

Firefighters responded at about 2:30 a.m. to the seventh-floor room at the Touraine Apartments, 274 Delaware Ave., between Chippewa and Tupper streets.

The fire left an estimated $1,200 damage to the building and its contents. Several residents had to leave their apartments because of the smoke and water damage.


Molloy named to represent deputy in heroin case

A veteran defense attorney from West Seneca has been appointed to represent an Erie County sheriff's deputy who was arrested last week on a felony charge of possessing a small amount of heroin.

Attorney John J. Molloy was appointed Monday to represent Deputy James Riesz, 38, of Sterling Avenue, who was suspended after FBI agents arrested him Thursday.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy C. Lynch said agents believe Riesz has been addicted to heroin for at least three years. Riesz has been jailed without bail since his arrest.

After Riesz told Magistrate Judge H. Kenneth Schroeder Jr. he has no money to pay a defense lawyer, the judge appointed Molloy. But the judge said Riesz will have to pay $250 a month toward his defense.

Riesz has worked for the Sheriff's Office at the Erie County Holding Center since 2003. Prior to that, he worked for nine years with the Buffalo Police Department.

Lynch said the FBI began investigating Riesz in August after receiving a tip that he was a regular user and buyer of heroin.


Tonawanda St. man robbed in driveway

Two robbers took $250 to $270 from a man at about 6:35 p.m. Sunday in the driveway of his home on the 900 block of Tonawanda Street.

One ordered him to hand over his money, while the other began counting down from five, police said.


Gang attack on Tacoma sends boy to hospital

A gang of six boys or young men assaulted two brothers at about 6:20 p.m. Sunday while they were walking at Tacoma and Crestwood avenues, Northwest District police said.

The older boy, 15, suffered a mild concussion and was treated in Women and Children's Hospital for bruising, pain and swelling to his mouth, left eye area and the back of his head.

The assailants punched and kicked the boy, causing him to fall and strike his head, knocking him unconscious.

The younger brother, 14, was not seriously injured.


Car hits doughnut shop, injuring six people

Six people were being treated in local hospitals late Monday after a car driven by a North Tonawanda teen crashed into a Tim Hortons doughnut shop in the City of Tonawanda, police reported.

Justin Tomasino, 18, was driving a 1999 Pontiac Grand Prix at about 6:30 p.m. when the vehicle struck the northeast corner 71 Niagara St. near the drive-thru window and caused extensive damage to the car and the restaurant, police said.

Three passengers and Tomasino suffered minor injuries in the crash and were taken to area hospitals. Two female employees of Tim Hortons were injured inside the building. They also were taken to hospitals. Their injuries were not considered life-threatening.

Tomasino was charged with imprudent speed, two unsafe tires, unsafe lane change, failure to stay in lane and operating with an expired insurance card.

The shop was closed following the crash.

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