Share this article

print logo


Falls firefighter injured at blaze in vacant building

NIAGARA FALLS -- A city firefighter suffered minor injuries Thursday night in a fire at a vacant, boarded-up, three-story residential building at 1555 Pierce Ave.

Firefighters quickly brought the blaze, which started at about 8:30 p.m., under control.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.


Three sought in shooting of 18-year-old Falls man

NIAGARA FALLS -- Police are seeking three suspects in the shooting of an 18-year-old city man at about 6 p.m. Wednesday at 12th and Niagara streets.

A dark-colored vehicle with three white males pulled up to the victim, Anthony McDougald, and a group of his friends at the intersection and tried to start a fight, police said.

At least two of the males from the vehicle are believed to have displayed handguns. That's when McDougald and his friends fled. McDougald was shot in the left arm near his bicep, and the bullet then went through his arm and entered his chest.

McDougald was taken to Niagara Falls Memorial Medical Center and later transferred to Erie County Medical Center, Buffalo, where he was in stable condition Thursday night.

Detectives interviewed several people Thursday and were working numerous leads, said Detective Lt. Michael Trane, head of the Criminal Investigation Division.

Anyone with information on the shooting is asked to call detectives at 286-4553.


Building inspector testifies about debris from store

LOCKPORT -- City Building Inspector David J. Miller Jr. testified Thursday that the debris pile at a partially collapsed dry-cleaning store would violate the city sanitary code even if it didn't have asbestos in it.

Miller made the statement on the first day of a Housing Court trial for Patrick McFall, owner of the former Peters Dry Cleaning, 316 Willow St. A wing of the building collapsed Dec. 15, but the rubble remains in place. A test McFall obtained at the city's insistence showed a small amount of asbestos in the debris.

Judge Thomas M. DiMillo already has ordered McFall to repair or demolish the rest of the building, which his lawyer, Jon R. Wilson, said McFall can't afford to do. The city has the authority to tear down the building itself and bill McFall for it.

"He's frustrated. He feels singled out," Wilson said of McFall, who faces fines or possible jail time if convicted. Chief Building Inspector Jason Dool is to testify when the trial resumes next Thursday.


Sentencing delay granted in Dumpster violation

LOCKPORT -- City Judge Thomas M. DiMillo on Thursday granted a one-week delay in sentencing for a Texas company found guilty of leaving a full Dumpster in front of a decrepit Lockport building for more than a year.

A lawyer for Liberty Plant Maintenance of Dayton, Texas, sent a letter asking for a delay, in hopes that a cleanup might occur.

The company could be fined as much as $1,000 a day for leaving the Dumpster, which may contain asbestos, in front of the shell of a building at 89 Mill St.

Company owner Scott J. Krzyzanowski bought the building in 2010, but his renovation efforts were stymied when the state Labor Department insisted he needed to perform an asbestos survey. The mostly roofless 16,000-square-foot brick building once was a power plant for a paper mill.


Deplorable conditions lead to house's condemnation

CAMBRIA -- A house was condemned in the 3900 block of Upper Mountain Road after an elderly couple were found living in "deplorable conditions," according to Niagara County sheriff's deputies.

An ambulance crew called at about 1 p.m. Wednesday to transport a 91-year-old man suffering from a medical condition found a man and woman living squalor, deputies said.

Adult Protective Services were called, and an 81-year-old woman, who was unable to care for herself, also was taken for a health evaluation. The SPCA of Niagara removed a 1-year-old Pomeranian.

Deputies said they found garbage, animal feces and rotten food all over both the floor and furniture of the house. Cambria Building Inspector Clifford E. Burch condemned the structure, calling it "unfit to live in."


DWI charge follows crash in parking lot

RANSOMVILLE -- A Brayley Road man was charged with driving while intoxicated after a crash in the Rite Aid parking lot on Ransomville Road just after 4 p.m. Wednesday.

David V. Rodgers, 62, also was charged with disorderly conduct, no seat belt and refusal to take a breath test, sheriff's deputies said.

Deputies said that Rodgers was trying to leave the lot when they arrived and that he appeared highly intoxicated. Rodgers' vehicle was full of empty beer bottles, and there was a six-pack in the front center console, deputies reported.

He told deputies he did not hit anything and used a number of expletives, refusing to cooperate with questioning and refusing to take a breath test, according to deputies.