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AROUND THE STATE

Driver who hit girl with SUV was stabbed

NEW YORK (AP) -- Police say a driver who hit four parked cars and flipped his SUV onto a 13-year-old girl standing outside her New York home had been stabbed. The driver and the teenager both died.

Officers responded to a report of a pedestrian struck Saturday night. A preliminary investigation showed that 44-year-old Sean Lewis of Brooklyn was driving an SUV when he struck three parked cars.

Police said he backed up and hit another parked car, causing his SUV to flip. They say the SUV then hit Kira Goddard, who was standing in front of her Brooklyn home.

Lewis suffered head injuries and was taken to the hospital, where medical staff discovered that he had been stabbed in the torso. He later died.

The medical examiner will determine Lewis' cause of death.

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Police investigating two sexual assaults

SARATOGA SPRINGS (AP) -- Police in the upstate New York town of Saratoga Springs are investigating two sexual assaults that took place in the past week.

Police said both assaults occurred late at night in a residential area.

In each case, a lone female was accosted from behind by a male described as tall and thin wearing a dark colored hoodie and jeans. No weapons were displayed.

The first attack occurred July 24 and the second late Friday night. Police are withholding some details of the attacks as an investigative measure.

Both women were treated for injuries and released.

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Gillibrand's proposals for driver safety passed

ALBANY (AP) -- Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand, D-N.Y., said her proposals for a national teen driver safety plan have been approved by a key Senate committee.

Gillibrand's Safe Teen and Novice Driver Uniform Protection Act would set a minimum age of 16 for driver's licenses and a minimum age of 18 for an unrestricted license.

Sixteen- and 17-year-olds would be restricted in driving at night.

Cell phone and texting would be prohibited while driving except for emergencies.

The Senate Commerce Committee has included her provisions.

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Cuomo signs law allowing land banks

ALBANY (AP) -- Gov. Andrew Cuomo has signed a new law allowing for creation of municipal land banks, which take control of problem properties and then redevelop or dispose of them.

The measure is meant as a strategic tool for cities like Buffalo where vacant properties outpace the private market's ability to deal with them.

Cuomo notes many upstate municipalities have an overabundance of vacant properties due to population losses, saying this law should give cities and counties a tool for rebuilding.

Former Buffalo Assemblyman Sam Hoyt, who sponsored the bill, says other states have seen the value of doing this to convert dilapidated properties.