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Death of man in custody of police is probed

NIAGARA FALLS, Ont. -- The Special Investigations Unit in Ontario is investigating the death of a 29-year-old man Wednesday morning in police custody, Niagara Regional Police reported.

The incident occurred at about 5:30 a.m. at Bender Road and Falls Avenue, when police responded to a call for assistance. The victim fled from police and was taken into custody after a brief foot chase. The man showed "signs of distress," and emergency officials were summoned. He died in Greater Niagara General Hospital, authorities said.


Collision of bicycles seriously injures girl

WELLAND, Ont. -- A 17-year-old Welland girl is in serious condition in Welland General Hospital with injuries suffered at about 10:30 p.m. Tuesday when her bicycle collided head-on with another bicyclist on First Street north of Quaker Road, Niagara Regional Police report.

Police said the girl was one of three bicyclists southbound on First Street who crossed over into the northbound lane to accommodate a southbound motor vehicle. After the vehicle had passed, she collided with a northbound bicyclist, a 34-year-old man from Thorold. He was treated in Welland General and released.

The two other southbound cyclists, both 17, one from Fonthill and one from Welland, were unhurt. Officers said that none of the bicycles had proper lighting. All the names were withheld by police.


Woman gets year for role in drive-by shooting

LOCKPORT -- A Niagara Falls woman who was at the wheel during a drive-by shooting was sentenced to a year in jail Wednesday by Niagara County Judge Peter L. Broderick Sr.

Selena Washington, 33, of Elmwood Avenue, had pleaded guilty to fourth-degree criminal facilitation in connection with the Nov. 6 shooting of Wilbert Hayes III, 22, by her brother Christopher R. Miller, 24. Christopher Miller previously was sentenced to 7 1/2 years in prison for the shooting.

Selena Washington is scheduled for trial Oct. 1 in connection with a Nov. 13 home invasion on Linwood Avenue in which she and Adrienne Jones, 33, of Centre Avenue, allegedly tried to beat a woman with a stick. The would-be victim escaped unhurt.


Caught in cross-fire, woman in car is shot

A Kilhoffer Street woman was treated in Buffalo General Hospital after she was shot in the shoulder Wednesday while riding in a car that got caught in the cross-fire from two passing vehicles at Humboldt Parkway and East Utica Street, Buffalo police said.

Jelisa Jones, 19, was in the rear seat of a car driven by her mother at about 12:30 p.m., when occupants of two other cars -- a gray sport utility vehicle and a green Ford Mustang convertible -- began exchanging gunfire.

"We don't know why they were shooting at each other," said Michael J. DeGeorge, Buffalo police spokesman.

The bullet passed through the car, nearly striking Jones' mother and 1-year-old sister before striking her in the shoulder.


Candidate LaBarbera gets Aug. 28 trial date

WHEATFIELD -- A nonjury trial on drunken-driving charges against Niagara County Legislature candidate Robert S. LaBarbera is set for Aug. 28 before Town Justice John J. Mattio.

LaBarbera, 58, a Town of Niagara Democrat running against incumbent 6th District Legislator Danny W. Sklarski, was arrested on Niagara Falls Boulevard by state police July 19.

He is charged with misdemeanor DWI, failure to keep right and refusing the breath test.

Assistant District Attorney Robert F. LaDuca Jr. will be the prosecutor, and Vincent R. Ginestre will represent LaBarbera.


Federal officials seek suspect in bank robbery

JAMESTOWN -- Rashawn "Killer" Smith, who is suspected of robbing the Foote Avenue branch of M&T Bank earlier this month, is sought by federal officials, Jamestown police announced.

Detective Lt. Todd Isaacson said federal warrants have been issued for Smith, who also is suspected of robbing three banks in Pittsburgh recently, displaying a weapon in one holdup.

Smith allegedly entered the M&T Bank here at about 11:15 a.m. July 16, handed the teller a note and fled with an undisclosed amount of cash. Smith is described as black, in his 20s, and about 5-foot-8 to 5-foot-10 with a slim build.

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