Gene Warner - The Buffalo News

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Gene Warner

Gene Warner has been a Buffalo News reporter for 36 years.


New York's highest court Tues day ordered the state prison sys tem to stop keeping convicted state prisoners in county jails for long periods, a decision that could relieve dangerous overcrowding in the Niagara County Jail and mean huge savings for Erie County.While attorneys Tuesday were studying the ramifications of the ruling, Erie County Sheriff Thom as F. Higgins…

The man just didn't fit: in an institution for the mentally retarded, in a program for alco holics, in prison or on the streets. Now Fred Stacy is dead at 34.Nearly three years ago, the alcoholic, men tally retarded man had several drinks, got into a borrowed car and went on an errand. Down the road, the car hopped a curb and killed two 11-year-old City of Tonawanda b…

New York's highest court today ordered the state prison system to stop keeping convicted state pris oners in county jails for long peri ods, a decision that could relieve dangerous overcrowding in the Ni agara County Jail and mean huge financial savings for Erie County.While attorneys today were studying the ramifications of the ruling, Erie County Sheriff Thom as F. …

U.S. Attorney Dennis C. Vacco won't have to wait up all night on Nov. 8 to make sure he still has his job. Following a voice-vote confir mation in the U.S. Senate Friday night, Vacco now is only one sig nature away from a full four-year term as U.S. Attorney for Western New York. That signature, by fel low Republican Ronald Reagan, remains only a formality.Two weeks a…

The 16-year-old needed a heart transplant, and he had a difficult choice: Should he choose the heart of a 67-year-old judge, a 37-year-old football player or an 18-year-old basketball player? "That's an easy task," the youth told his doctor. "The 67-year-old heart that belonged to that judge has never been used." With that story, which he ad mitted borrowing from Benj…

At least 16 Western New York residents were arrested and jailed overnight in Atlanta as a result of the anti-abortion rally, according to local abortion foes who are there.The local organizers today also were crying foul because of the police tactics used in the arrests."I witnessed police brutality like I've never seen in my life," Nancy Walker of Connection Drive in…

Anne Shuell can type between 15 and 20 words per minute.That's lightning quick, when you consider that she can't use her hands. Mrs. Shuell -- with the help of the Head Master/Screen Typer computer software -- types letters and speeches by moving her head and puffing on a mouthpiece.Even though her multiple sclerosis has put her in a wheelchair and denied her the use …

Members of an advocacy group for the mentally ill will put on their walking shoes Saturday to picket the Erie County Medical Center in an effort to end what they contend is "grossly inadequate" emergency and admissions facilities for mentally ill patients.The complaints of the Erie Alliance for the Mentally Ill include an overcrowded waiting room for emergency psychia…

The time was "T plus 2 minutes" and counting as the solid rocket boosters on the space shuttle Discovery prepared to separate and America finally began to let go of that horrible moment 32 months ago.In a snapshot scene probably found in any American community this morning, about 60 eighth-graders sat in semicircles around the television set in Susan Eastmer's science…

Ben Johnson, the great Canadian hope who won Olympic gold as well as national hero's status in 9.79 seconds, now stands accused of a high crime: heaping shame on a nation."Not guilty," cried a majority of the dozen Canadians interviewed Wednesday along the Niagara Peninsula.Denial -- not national shame or vilification of a star athlete -- seemed the predominant reacti…

The third fire this month at St. Christopher's Catholic Church in the Town of Tonawanda destroyed the rear of the church, including the altar, and left close to $1 million damage early today.Fire officials, while unwilling to say the fire was set, did agree that the cause was highly suspicious. The church, at 2660 Niagara Falls Blvd., was the scene of two previous fir…

It may have been the ultimate tribute to the slain priests.Before the 19-month crime-and-punishment ordeal ended in Thursday's guilty verdict against the last of the two defendants, the relatives of Monsignor David P. Herlihy and the Rev. A. Joseph Bissonette spoke of compassion, forgiveness and lack of spite toward them.In seeking to forgive, they only were following…

When two state troopers spotted a van weaving back and forth on the Thruway early today, they pulled the van over with the expectation that the driver may have been drunk.Instead, they found 22 Mexican aliens, crammed into the late-model Dodge van, causing the overloaded vehicle to sway back and forth.When Troopers Eddie L. Scott and Praxedes Luna stopped the van at a…

Gov. Cuomo today provided little hope that Buffalo would receive state money to pay Hurd tax refunds to all city property owners from the mid-1970s."I have no idea, but this is going to be a very, very tough year for the (state) budget," the governor said in an interview this afternoon at Prior Aviation.Buffalo city officials have banked on the possibility of state fu…