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Thomas J. Prohaska

I graduated from Starpoint Central High School in 1979 and St. Bonaventure University in 1983. I worked at WLVL Radio in Lockport from 1985 to 1995, when I joined The News.


Crime

Sterling T. Jones, who is awaiting sentencing on a federal conviction for possessing child pornography, admitted Tuesday that he obtained heroin from his girlfriend in the Niagara County Jail last year. Federal guidelines say Jones, 24, of Grand Street, Lockport, could be sentenced to up to nine years in prison for downloading 295 pornographic videos and 11 still photos…

Crime

A man with a long criminal history pleaded not guilty Monday to a 15-count indictment accusing him of stealing checks from mailboxes in western Niagara County and using the account numbers to print counterfeit checks. Victor E. Johnson, 51, of Niagara Falls, was held in lieu of $50,000 bail set by State Supreme Court Justice Richard C. Kloch Sr. Johnson was arrested…

Crime

A man who burglarized stores and vehicles in Olcott in 2015 was sentenced Tuesday to two to six years in state prison after he failed in a court-supervised drug treatment program. Niagara County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III denied youthful offender status for Robert G. Holmes, formerly of Fuller Road, Newfane, who was 16 at the time of the crimes. Assistant District Atto…

Local News

Niagara Falls officials will announce a summer schedule of more than 60 events for children and families Wednesday. The Summer In Your City Series, which actually runs into October, will include free outdoor fitness sessions, movie nights, STEAM workshops – that stands for science, technology, engineering, arts and math – and a physical education curriculum for city par…

Featured

Trooper Lawrence W. Lakeman was among as many as 4,000 members of the New York State Police who were sent to Lower Manhattan in the wake of the al-Qaida attacks on the World Trade Center on Sept. 11, 2001. Six years later, Lakeman died of pancreatic cancer, on his 42nd birthday. For the past three years, his widow, Audra Lakeman of Lockport, has been fighting to have…

Local News

Fifty-six employers are signed up to accept applications at a job fair Wednesday in Lockport. The event will be held from 1 to 3:30 p.m. in the Best Western Plus, 515 S. Transit St., according to Donald J. Jablonski, director of the Niagara County Employment and Training Department, which organized the job fair. Job seekers should bring their resumes to the event. …

Local News

Charles L. Walker Jr., charged with killing one man and driving a killer to and from another homicide scene, accepted a plea bargain Monday that will send him to prison for 15 years. Walker, 24, of Willow Avenue, Niagara Falls, admitted to first-degree manslaughter for the Dec. 5 shooting death of Ladrae Walker, 26, no relation. Niagara County Assistant District …

Local News

Niagara Falls police and the state Attorney General's Office will be buying guns from 9 a.m. to noon Wednesday in the former Niagara Falls Police Headquarters, 520 Hyde Park Blvd. The state-sponsored buyback program will accept any type of firearm, working or broken, as long as it's unloaded and brought to the site in the trunk of a vehicle. The gun must be in a bag or …

Crime

The father of a murdered 5-year-old Cheektowaga girl has no grounds to sue the great-grandparents who left the girl in the killer's care, a court has ruled. The Appellate Division of the State Supreme Court ruled that a lower court correctly threw out the suit filed by Michael C. Tennant, father of Isabella Tennant, against Sharon R. and Henry C. Lascelle. Isabel…

Crime

A court has ruled Niagara County does not have to supply a lawyer or pay legal bills in an ongoing lawsuit over a former coroner's theft of brain tissue from the victim of a fatal car crash in April 2012. Coroner Russell Jackman II gave the brain tissue to Cambria Fire Chief Vincent Salerno for use in training cadaver dogs. Both men pleaded guilty to obstructing gov…

Crime

An Idaho teenager was charged with a felony Sunday for allegedly having a handgun in his car as he was entering the Thunder of Niagara Air Show at the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station. Simeon W. Brovont, 18, of Homedale, Idaho, was charged with second-degree criminal possession of a weapon for allegedly having a .22-caliber handgun. State Police Investigator William Pe…

Local News

Lockport CARES, a faith-based organization, dedicated a new shelter for Lockport's homeless population Saturday at 188 Genesee St. The shelter is next door to the group's former shelter at 192 Genesee, which opened in November 2009. Lockport CARES acquired 188 Genesee for $40,000 in a 2012 foreclosure auction. The organization was founded in 2007 by several Lockport …

Local News

"Did you hear about the movie with the dachshund in it? It was an Oscar wiener." That won a comedy contest that was part of Dog Days of Kenmore, a canine festival that brought hundreds of dogs and their owners to Mang Park Sunday. The eighth annual event made parking virtually impossible for three or four blocks around the park, as the crowd visited dozens of vendors…

Erie County

The fire departments of the cities of Tonawanda and North Tonawanda will hold a joint Fire Inspection Day parade Saturday, for the 138th time. The start of the parade route alternates between the two cities. This year the starting point is at William and Fletcher streets in Tonawanda, where the procession will kick off at 2 p.m. After traveling west on Fletcher Stree…

Local News

The North Tonawanda Fire Department celebrated its new light rescue vehicle at an event Friday. The city paid half the cost of the $200,000 truck, with a state grant lined up by State Sen. Robert G. Ortt, R-North Tonawanda, providing the remainder of the money. The new vehicle will carry the department's rescue equipment, including the Jaws of Life for opening wrecke…