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POLICE & COURTS

>Funeral director sprays wife with chemical, police say

A Buffalo funeral home employee was arrested early Sunday after he allegedly sprayed a hazardous chemical used to preserve cadaver organs into his wife's face, sickening her and the five officers who responded to the incident, according to Northeast District police.

Police say Rollin E. Carpenter, 58, of Stockbridge Avenue, sprayed a noxious substance, Permacav 50, into his wife's face at about 12:10 a.m. Sunday.

Permacav 50 is a formaldehyde solution that is toxic if inhaled, swallowed or when it comes into contact with skin.

Carpenter obtained the chemical from Thomas T. Edwards Funeral Home, 995 Genesee St., where he is a funeral director, but he is not authorized to have the substance at home, according to police.

Carpenter's wife experienced burning and shortness of breath. Five responding Buffalo police officers also experienced the same symptoms. One officer went to Erie County Medical Center for treatment.

Carpenter was arrested at the funeral home. He faces several charges, including first-degree reckless endangerment, a felony, police said.

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>3 held on gun charges in drive-by shooting

Three people have been arrested on gun charges after a 24-year-old Buffalo man was shot during a drive-by shooting Sunday morning at Lombard and Peckham streets, police said.

Leron J. Bailey, of Cornwall Avenue, suffered a gunshot wound to his right thigh. He was treated in the Erie County Medical Center and released.

Andrew J. Helfrich, 18, of East Ferry Street, and Lakendra T. Mitchell, 17, and Francois S. Mitchell, 21, both of the same Herman Street address, were charged with felony criminal possession of a weapon.

Ferry-Fillmore District police said Bailey exchanged some words with two men in a white van just after 7 a.m. One of the passengers then got out of the vehicle and began shouting. The passenger then fired about five shots, one of which struck the victim.

A 911 call directed Officers Richard Cruz, Arrie Moore and Robert Middlebrooks to a vehicle fitting the description at Clark and Peckham streets. There, the officers discovered the three people in a vehicle with a loaded .22-caliber handgun under the passenger-side seat.

Police said Helfrich was sitting in the driver's seat, while Lakendra Mitchell and Francois Mitchell were in the passenger seats.

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>Boy, 15, arrested in theft of car, robbery of two

A 15-year-old boy accused of robbing two people of cash, credit cards and a car early Sunday was arrested later in the day while behind the wheel of the stolen vehicle, police said.

The teen, whose name was not released because of his age, is accused of robbing the two on Shoshone Street at 2 a.m. Sunday, according to a police.

The victims reported the robber saying: "Nobody move. I got a gun. Give me your car keys, empty your purse and pockets." He did not display a gun, they added.

The woman lost her purse, $40, driver's license, credit cards and the keys to her 2003 Nissan Altima. Her male acquaintance handed over his wallet, $300, credit and debit cards and his house and vehicle keys.

The robber drove south on Shoshone.

Officer Chris Calloway of the Ferry-Fillmore District said he pulled over the suspect at 5:45 p.m. Sunday after he ran a red light in the stolen car at Broadway and Herman Street.

None of the other stolen items was recovered, police said. The teen faces several charges, including criminal possession of stolen property, a felony.

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>Near-crash with deputy results in DWI charge

A Buffalo man was charged with drunken driving over the weekend after he made an unsafe left turn and almost struck a Sheriff's Department patrol car on Transit Road, sheriff's deputies said Sunday.

Deputy George Avery said he observed a southbound vehicle making a left turn in front of a patrol vehicle from Transit Road onto Como Park Boulevard at about 11:50 p.m. on Friday. He said the vehicle then failed to stop when he activated his emergency lights and sirens.

Avery arrested Robert T. DeTamble, 36, of Colonial Circle, and charged him with felony driving while intoxicated and felony aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle. He was convicted of DWI in February 2003, and at the time of his arrest, his license was revoked for an alcohol-related charge, deputies said.

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>Broadway store robbed by two men

Two men, armed with a rifle, robbed a Broadway store Sunday night, police reported.

Ferry-Fillmore District police said a store employee at Cathay Express, 890 Broadway, was confronted by two men just before 8 p.m.

The men stole $100 from the cash register. They also took $300 from the clerk as well as his cell phone and keys. The robbers fled east on Broadway.

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