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Lancaster fire victim in stable condition

A Lancaster man was in stable condition but on a ventilator Friday in Erie County Medical Center after being injured in a fire he ignited in his apartment building on Sawyer Avenue, Lancaster police said.

The man's family asked police not to release his name.

The fire resulted from careless smoking, Lt. Erin Myers said.

The man, who was said to be in his late 40s or 50s, lived in an upper apartment of the house -- an old bar converted into apartments -- with four other men.


Seller of game console shot in church lot

A 23-year-old Potomac Avenue man was being treated for a gunshot wound late Friday after he was shot in the chest while trying to sell a game console, Buffalo police said.

Shawn Kleotzer, accompanied by a friend, was in the parking lot of St. John Kanty Catholic Church at about 6:45 p.m. when the gunman, described as in his 20s, entered their vehicle, shot Kleotzer once in the chest and fled.

The bullet was recovered on nearby Brownell Street. Kleotzer was conscious and talking with police at the scene. He was taken to Erie County Medical Center, where his condition was not immediately available.

Homicide detectives were investigating.


12-year term imposed in robbery of deliveryman

A Riley Street man with a lengthy criminal record was sentenced Friday to 12 years in state prison.

Samuel Wynn, 38, was convicted earlier this month of second-degree robbery in the armed robbery of a pizza deliveryman Aug. 30, 2005, down the block from his home.

Prosecutors had considered recommending a life term for Wynn as a persistent violent felon, but that wasn't pursued.

Erie County Judge Timothy J. Drury, however, listed Wynn's run-ins with the law before sentencing him.

Between 1993 and 2002, Wynn was arrested on charges of criminal possession of a weapon, misdemeanor assault and criminal possession of stolen property. He violated his probation or parole four times.


Woman robbed of cash, purse on Walden Avenue

A robber took a Sumner Place woman's purse, $13 and several other personal items early Friday at Walden Avenue and Sumner, Buffalo police said.

The victim told police that the man approached her shortly before 3 a.m. and threatened her, saying "Give me everything you got, or I'll shoot you." He had both of his hands inside his hooded sweat shirt.

The woman was not injured.


Man accused of raising 200 fighting roosters

CHERRY CREEK -- A Cherry Creek man is accused of raising roosters on his Farrington Hollow Road property for cockfighting, Chautauqua County sheriff's deputies said.

Donald E. Rugg, 68, who was arrested Friday, faces three counts of violating state Agriculture and Markets law that prohibits animal fighting, deputies said.

Sheriff's investigators confiscated more than 200 roosters from the site last week.

The birds have since been euthanized by the SPCA, which is mandatory, deputies said.

Rugg was released on $500 cash bail following his arraignment.


Driver faces charges as pickup hits building

NIAGARA FALLS, Ont. -- A Niagara Falls, Ont., man faces charges of dangerous driving, impaired driving and flight from police after a pickup truck crashed Thursday evening into a building on Queen Street, Niagara Regional Police reported.

The man, whose name was not released, was in police custody pending a bail hearing.

Police said they had attempted to stop the pickup shortly before 7 p.m. at Victoria Avenue and Kitchener Street because it was moving erratically. The driver led police on a short chase before accelerating and steering into a building at 4434 Queen St., police said.

He was taken to Greater Niagara General Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, where he remained Friday for a psychiatric assessment.


Child-abuse cases net 2 in Falls; police seek teen

NIAGARA FALLS -- Police made two arrests in child endangerment cases Thursday, and also investigated a report that two young boys were threatened with a long gun by a young man who had been baby-sitting them.

Frank Torres, 32, of 15th Street, was charged with second-degee sexual abuse (for acts involving a person under age 14) and endangering the welfare of a child.

In a separate case, Fatima Bennerson, 33, of Cheektowaga, was charged with endangering the welfare of a child. Police also investigated a report from a grandmother who claimed that her grandsons, ages 9 and 6, were threatened with a gun Thursday evening by a man who had been watching them. The incident reportedly occurred in front of the suspect's 3-year-old son, police said. Investigators are seeking to interview a 17-year-old youth in the case.

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