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COMPACT DISC-CASSETTE PLAYER STOLEN FROM CLASSROOM

NIAGARA FALLS -- $150 compact disc-cassette player was stolen from a teacher's classroom at Gaskill Middle School on Hyde Park Boulevard between 3 p.m. Monday and 8 a.m. Tuesday, Officer David Bower said.

Police dispatcher suspended on theft-of-services charge

A North Tonawanda civilian police dispatcher has been suspended from her job without pay after being charged with theft of services and criminal impersonation.

Melissa Balen, 26, of 17th Avenue, is accused of using a false name and Social Security number to have electricity turned on at her home, North Tonawanda Police Chief Carl W. Stiles said.

Man with knife robs Payless Shoes of $35

NIAGARA FALLS -- A young man with a knife made off with about $35 Tuesday during a robbery at Payless Shoes on Portage Road, Detective John Olander said.

The robbery occurred at 3 p.m., about 15 minutes after the suspect had entered the store, police said. The bandit approached a clerk, displayed a small knife, then fled with the money from a cash drawer.

Police charge brothers in attacks on two boys

LOCKPORT -- Two brothers, ages 10 and 12, have been charged in the Sept. 19 attack of two boys on Waterman Street, Detective David Barrancotta said Tuesday.

The 10-year-old is being charged with second-degree menacing for threatening another 10-year-old with an ax, Barrancotta said.

The 12-year-old, who is charged with third-degree assault, is accused of punching a 9-year-old in the face, Barrancotta said.

The case is being handled by Niagara County Probation Services.

Police investigating rape of girl, 7, on Aug. 6

LOCKPORT -- Detectives are investigating the rape of a 7-year-old girl last month, police said Tuesday.

The girl was sexually assaulted and raped by a 15-year-old boy early Aug. 6 while she was staying with relatives, and the girl's mother reported the incident, police said.

Rochester man charged with selling pepper spray

A Rochester man has been arrested and accused of selling pepper spray at a Walden Avenue flea market.

Town police Officers Robert Laskowski and Michael Sliwinski said Thomas Pagano, 65, told them he didn't know he needed a license to sell the substance, which some people carry to protect against street crimes and dog bites.

The officers confiscated 28 canisters of pepper spray at the flea market at 2500 Walden on Sunday and charged Pagano with unlawful possession and sale of a noxious substance, a misdemeanor.

Lt. James Morath said the retail sale of pepper spray is restricted to licensed firearms dealers and pharmacists.

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