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Father and son guilty in arena incident

Shane Buczek was jailed Thursday after he and his father, Daniel, a Derby real estate businessman, were convicted of harassing an HSBC Arena security officer 12 months ago.

City Judge Sharon M. LoVallo had the younger man taken from court in handcuffs about 4:30 p.m. after prosecutor Molly Jo Musarra advised her that he had given a fake Florida address.

After a four-day trial, a jury found both Daniel Buczek, 56, and his son, 35, guilty of criminal impersonation and harassment for fighting with arena security officer Edward M. Cotter and falsely claiming that the younger Buczek was a federal agent.

The judge allowed Daniel Buczek to remain free on $2,500 bail pending sentencing set for March 20. The judge said she would review Shane Buczek's bail status today.

Musarra told the judge she had confirmed with law enforcement authorities in Del Ray Beach, Fla., that the home address Shane Buczek had given was a business address at a strip mall.

The judge had Shane Buczek handcuffed and taken to jail after he stood up and told her he really lives in Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

James Ostrowski, attorney for both Buczeks, said he will try to convince the judge to allow Shane Buczek to live with his parents, Derby entrepreneurs Daniel and Deborah Buczek, until the sentencing.

Musarra said she will urge that both men be sentenced to the maximum jail term: one year.

Cotter, a Buffalo police detective who works for the arena's private security force, testified Tuesday that he had been called to the third floor of the arena after the second period of a Sabres game Dec. 26 because the Buczeks were trying to use fake currency -- Liberty coins -- to buy beer.

Cotter told the jury that Shane Buczek flashed what he claimed was a federal government "badge" and claimed to be an ambassador working for the federal government. He said he arrested both men after they shoved him and tried to escape from a room where he had taken them for questioning.

Wednesday, Daniel Buczek told the jury the arena incident with Cotter was "all a misunderstanding."

e-mail: mgryta@buffnews.com

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