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NIAGARA POLICE & COURTS

Felony drug charges placed against man, 21

FREDONIA -- A 21-year-old Fredonia man is facing felony drug charges after he allegedly sold a quantity of cocaine and Ecstasy to undercover officers over a four-month period, the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Office reported Wednesday.

Chad H. Blakely, of the Middlesex Apartments, is accused of selling the drugs to investigators from the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force. Most of the trafficking took place in Fredonia, police said.

Blakely was arrested Tuesday afternoon and charged with criminal possession and criminal sale of a controlled substance.

He was arraigned and taken to Chautauqua County Jail in lieu of $25,000 cash or $50,000 property bond.

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Parolee sent to prison on cocaine charges

LOCKPORT -- A Niagara Falls man who had been on parole from a three- to six-year prison sentence on drug charges was arraigned Tuesday in Niagara County on a fresh indictment accusing him of intending to sell two ounces of cocaine.

Sylvester Harris Jr., 38, was arrested Aug. 19 in his Eighth Street home after a check of the property uncovered 2.05 ounces of cocaine.

He is charged with second- and third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. Harris has served three state prison stints on drug charges, according to the state Department of Correctional Services Web site.

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Theft of Nativity statue includes building damage

WELLAND, Ont. -- The Christmas Day theft of a baby Jesus from the Nativity scene at a Welland church has authorities searching for suspects in the wake of similar thefts in St. Catharines, Niagara Regional Police reported.

Burglars broke into the Holy Ghost Parish Center on Golden Boulevard in Welland on Monday and stole the baby Jesus figure from the Nativity scene. The burglars also caused extensive damage by flooding a bathroom and kitchen area at the building, police believe. Damage was estimated at more than $5,000.

Police suspect the theft may be the result of a prank. Similar thefts of the baby Jesus from Nativity scenes also have been reported in St. Catharines at the City Hall.

Anyone with information is asked to contact Niagara Regional Police at (905) 688-4111, Ext. 3320.

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