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The Niagara County Legislature voted unanimously Tuesday to join the ranks of counties suing the manufacturers of opioid painkillers for reimbursement of costs resulting from the opioid abuse epidemic. Erie County is among the local governments that already have filed lawsuits against drugmakers over increased costs for police and emergency response and social servic…

None of the eight Ewing children, who lie with their young mother in a plot in Oakwood Cemetery in Niagara Falls, lived to age 10 before losing their lives to a toxic mix of poverty, greed and callous indifference. Yet their deaths, along with those of seven other children and two adults in a fire that ripped through a condemned former hotel, changed the city in which t…

A man who robbed a Niagara Falls cab driver of $90 at gunpoint last year called the crime "a minor thing" at his sentencing Tuesday. Keonta J. Mayfield, 21, a former Falls resident whose last reported address was on Rodney Avenue in Buffalo, was sentenced by Niagara County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III to six months in jail and probation. Mayfield pleaded guilty to thi…

Construction may start this fall on the 2.2-mile gap in the Erie Canalway trail in Pendleton, the last missing link in the trail in Western New York. State Canal Corp. spokesman Steven Gosset said that the agency soon will seek bids for the project, with hopes of starting work in October on the connection between Tonawanda Creek and Fisk roads. Once that portion is com…

Bomb-sniffing dogs smelled something that led authorities to evacuate an area near Artpark's main outdoor stage before Tuesday night's concert, according to New York State Parks Police. No threat was found and the performance eventually went on. Investigators from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and personnel from other law enforcement agencie…

A woman who stole a 2005 Dodge Caravan in Niagara Falls and crashed it in Lewiston while leading police on a high-speed chase appears headed to state prison. Mariah M. Patterson, 21, of Seventh Street, Niagara Falls, pleaded guilty last week to a felony and two misdemeanors. Niagara County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III scheduled sentencing for Aug. 24 and refused a defens…

A state board that doles out advice and grants to financially distressed communities offered some suggestions -- but no money -- to Niagara Falls. The city should reassess its properties and get police officers to work more hours, according to the Financial Restructuring Board for Local Governments. The board can award large grants to communities in financial turmoil…

John E. Castro of Strauss Road, Town of Lockport, was sentenced Monday to four years in state prison, followed by 10 years of post-release supervision, for fondling a 13-year-old girl in Somerset on Nov. 1. Niagara County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III gave Castro, 27, the maximum sentence available for the charge. Murphy said Castro didn't merit any further breaks beyond …

Niagara Falls City Councilman Ezra P. Scott Jr. pleaded guilty Monday to misdemeanor driving while intoxicated. Scott, however, can earn a reduction to impaired driving, if he stays out of trouble during six months of interim probation. If he does so, he would not have a criminal record. Lockport City Judge William J. Watson accepted the proposal from the Niagara …

A driver who police found asleep behind the wheel outside a Niagara Falls Tim Horton's on Sunday morning faces an aggravated driving while intoxicated charge. Andra T. Smith, 41, of Buffalo, was sleeping in the driver's seat outside the coffee shop on Pine Avenue and Hyde Park Boulevard just before 6 a.m., according to a city police report. Officers woke Smith up, an…

Kaden Mitchell, the 7-year-old Niagara Falls boy who was attacked by his aunt's two Rottweilers June 7, is slowly improving, but may face another four to six months of surgeries. His grandfather, Roy Gregory, said Monday that a scan showed the swelling in Kaden's brain is decreasing. Soon an operation will be performed to close a large wound in the back of his head.…

Niagara River Greenway funding is being sought for the Discover Niagara Shuttle, a Town of Niagara park and a bust of the man after whom Lewiston is named. Public comment will be accepted through July 5 at Jeanne.Leccese@parks.ny.gov. Veterans Memorial Park off Grauer Road in the Town of Niagara would receive $399,870 toward a $647,000 "town square" project that includ…

Jim Kwitchoff spent a career coaching other people’s kids. As much as he enjoyed it, it’s always great when he has an opportunity to coach his own. Instead of roaming the sidelines as a top aide to Reggie Witherspoon at the University at Buffalo, Kwitchoff is coaching his sixth-grade son, Ty, and the 12U North Tonawanda Nighthawks team that will be competing for …