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POLICE & COURTS

Two teens on bicycles rob man at gunpoint

A Tonawanda Street man told Buffalo police that he was robbed at about 7:40 a.m. Monday on Austin Street near East Street by two teenage males on bicycles, according to police reports.

The victim said the males wore black masks and black hats and approached him. One pointed a gun at the victim's chest and said, "Give me everything you got."

The robbers made off with a cellular telephone. They took off northbound on East Street.

Northwest District police were investigating.

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Marketer is convicted in assault at restaurant

Michael A. Pratchett, a Buffalo arts and entertainment marketer, was convicted Monday of assaulting a man who came to the aid of his date at a downtown restaurant and bar last year.

After about three hours of deliberations, a jury convicted Pratchett, 30, of Summer Street, of second-degree assault for the attack on Ryan Camman and found him not guilty of first-degree assault. Pratchett faces a possible seven-year prison term but could get probation.

Camman, now 29, testified that Pratchett smashed a heavy pint glass on the right side of his face. He said he was struck when he ran to the aid of his date after she accidentally stepped on Pratchett's foot and he cursed at her and threatened to "kill" her in the Stillwater, on Delaware Avenue, at about 1 a.m. June 7, 2008. He said glass shards had to be removed from his face at a hospital.

Pratchett said he acted in self-defense and instinctively swung his right hand for balance while holding the glass after being pushed. His attorneys questioned why he was not arrested until six months after the incident and said the conviction will be appealed.

State Supreme Court Justice Russell P. Buscaglia allowed Pratchett to remain free but ordered him to post an additional $10,000 bail, bringing his total to $15,000.

He will be sentenced Nov. 30.

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DNA test implicates Falls man in burglaries

LOCKPORT -- The comparison of crime scene DNA with a sample in the state's DNA database has pointed the finger at a Niagara Falls man for two burglaries in that city 4 1/2 years ago.

Assistant District Attorney Claudette S. Caldwell said Monday in Niagara County Court that DNA given after a previous conviction by Aaron R. Stewart, 46, of Pierce Avenue, matches that found at the scenes of the break-ins April 12 and 18, 2005. Baseball caps were found at both scenes, and blood was detected at the first crime.

Judge Sara Sheldon Sperrazza ordered Monday that Stewart give another DNA sample to confirm the findings. Stewart has yet to be indicted in the burglary cases, but he is under indictment on a weapons possession charge stemming from a Feb. 3 arrest in Niagara Falls.

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Falls man faces theft, parole violation charges

LOCKPORT -- A Niagara Falls man was charged in a Lockport heist after being picked up on a state parole violation.

Police said they chased John C. Shaw, 38, of Buffalo Avenue through city streets last Thursday for a state parole violation, and picked him up on the roof of Palace Theatre according to Police Chief Lawrence Eggert.

Detective Lt. John Yotter told The Buffalo News on Monday that a Walnut Street woman told officers last week that Shaw entered her home and took some jewelry, including a gold chain with a gold cross and diamond, two wedding bands with gold nuggets and diamonds, a silver ring and emerald and diamonds.

Shaw was found with some of this jewelry on him when charged, police said. More jewelry was recovered at a local restaurant and jewelry store, Yotter said. Shaw was charged with grand larceny and possession of stolen property.

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Drug, liquor charges follow traffic stop

A Niagara Falls man ended up in bigger trouble after Erie County sheriff's deputies stopped him at about 11:30 p.m. Sunday on Stony Point Road on Grand Island for driving a vehicle with a loud exhaust, authorities said.

Deputies Jordan Grabar and Brad Girdler charged Edward F. Tredo, whose age was not unavailable, with unlawful possession of marijuana and having an open alcoholic beverage in his vehicle. Tredo later was issued a ticket to appear in Grand Island Town Court and released.

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Deputies investigate theft from Wheatfield apartment

WHEATFIELD -- A man told Niagara County sheriff's deputies on Sunday afternoon that he learned from his landlady his apartment had been broken into as he was making his way home from Toronto.

The 64-year-old Nicki's Lane man said his landlady called him to ask if anyone should be in his apartment and she told him that she had heard someone inside.

The tenant told deputies a Brazilian briefcase was damaged and $715 in cash was taken, including American dollars, Euros, and British and Egyptian currency. Also stolen were gold rings worth $800 and a $700 watch. Total loss and damage to property was estimated at $3,865.

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