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WOMAN, 85, BADLY BURNED WHEN CLOTHES IGNITE

An 85-year-old woman remained in critical condition today with burns suffered when her clothes caught on fire while she was cooking at her Clinton Street home on Sunday afternoon, Buffalo fire officials said.

Monica J. Gorka was taken by Rural Metro Ambulance to the Erie County Medical Center with second- and third-degree burns over roughly 40 percent of her body, authorities said. She was burned on the face, neck, chest, abdomen, upper back and legs.

Firefighters responded to a 4:11 p.m. call at her residence. Fire reports indicated that the blaze left no damage to the home.

Fire damage to boat linked
to fireworks display

A 24-foot boat anchored off Fuhrmann Boulevard was heavily damaged by fire Sunday night during a Father's Day fireworks show in downtown Buffalo.

Buffalo firefighters investigating the incident said they suspected fireworks may have caused the boat to ignite, sustaining $8,000 damage.

The U.S. Coast Guard reported the fire at 10:16 p.m. in a 1984 Beeliner boat off First Buffalo River Marina, 32 Fuhrmann Blvd. No injuries were reported.

Police say masked bicyclist
robbed Rite Aid of $8,471

A masked man on a bicycle took $8,471 at gunpoint Sunday from an employee of the Rite Aid pharmacy at 756 E. Delavan Ave., according to Northeast District officers.

Police said the employee was leaving the store at 5:30 p.m. with a cash bag and was robbed before she could make a night deposit at a bank.

The robber was described as a black man in his 30s, about 6 feet tall, weighing 200 pounds and wearing black jeans, a black and gray camouflage shirt and black mask with white markings. He displayed a black pistol in his waistband and fled on a black and yellow bike.

Two men arrested, charged
with criminal coercion

Two Buffalo roommates were charged over the weekend with demanding cash from a woman for the return of her missing wallet.

The woman, who lives in the Marine Drive Apartments, told Central District officers that the men telephoned her several times between Wednesday and Saturday. She said they had her wallet, which contained two bank debit cards.

Casiano Mobley, 43, and Anthony Lowery, 40, who both live at Delaware Avenue and Edward Street, were charged with felony possession of stolen property and criminal coercion.

Firemen quell $15,00 blaze
in Hartland farm structure

Volunteer firefighters quickly contained a fire that left $15,000 damage to a building at Becker Farms on South Quaker Road in the Town of Hartland early this morning.

Niagara County sheriff's deputies and volunteer firefighters from Gasport and Hartland responded to a 12:04 a.m. alarm at 3724 South Quaker Road. The firefighters managed to confine the flames, after the fire broke out in a 20-by-30-foot wooden structure attached to a greenhouse on the farm.

Three hospitalized in crash;
one driver ticketed by police

A two-vehicle accident Sunday in the Orleans County Town of Carlton sent both drivers and a passenger to hospitals. One driver was listed in guarded condition.

The Orleans County Sheriff's Department said the accident occurred at 6:30 p.m. on Route 18 and Hard Road.

Sabrina A. Herberger, 21, of Depew, was charged with failure to yield the right of way when attempting a left turn into a parking lot from Route 18.

Her car was struck by a vehicle driven by Kenneth A. Sullivan, 43, of Olcott, who had to be extricated from the wreck by the Lyndon Fire Department. He was flown by MercyFlight to Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, where he was listed in guarded condition this morning.

After the crash, Herberger was taken to Medina Memorial Hospital, where she was listed in stable condition before being transferred to Erie County Medical Center. She was discharged this morning.

Chase leads to arrests of 3
accused of drug possession

Buffalo police said three men were arrested Saturday night with 44 bags of crack cocaine and six bags of marijuana.

Eric Rozier, 25; Mario Pearson, 28, and Eugene Copelin, 28, all of Bailey Avenue, were each charged with criminal possession of a controlled substance, unlawful possession of marijuana and criminal use of drug paraphernalia.

According to police, Officers Douglas Hayden and Richard Lopez answered a call about a man with a gun at Walden Avenue and Harmonia Street. The man led them on a foot chase to a home on Walden, where the officers said they found the three men with crack cocaine and marijuana.

It was unclear from police reports whether the original man with the gun was among the three arrested at the Walden home.

Trial begins in death of man
who fought defendant's kin

Jury selection began today in Erie County Court in the trial of Ramone Robinson, who is accused of killing a man who had fought with Robinson's brother.

Robinson, 20, who has been jailed since July, is accused of second-degree murder in the fatal shooting of John McCain, 24, outside the victim's home June 28.

McCain had reportedly beaten up Robinson's brother in a street fight weeks earlier and was reportedly engaged in another series of fistfights with Robinson's kin the day he was fatally shot.

Judge Sheila A. DiTullio is presiding over the trial.

Police seek man who passed
fake $20 at Lenox Hotel

Buffalo police are looking for the man who passed a counterfeit $20 bill at a North Street hotel early this morning.

After passing the bogus bill, the man ran out of the Lenox Hotel with $20 in change about 1:45 a.m., police said. Officers are looking for a black man in his 20s, about 5 foot 7, who frequents the area.

The counterfeit $20 bill was turned over to Buffalo detectives for further investigation.

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