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NIAGARA POLICE & COURTS

Bits, buckles, bridles missing in Middleport

MIDDLEPORT -- Niagara County sheriff's deputies are investigating the recent thefts of equestrian equipment from a home in the 6000 block of Griswold Street.

Deputies learned Tuesday that among items missing were stirrups, bits, martingales, bridles, buckles and fleece pads. The loss was estimated at more than $2,100.

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Police see similarities in two holdups in Falls

NIAGARA FALLS -- Niagara Falls detectives believe knifepoint robberies within a half-hour of each other early Wednesday at two city businesses may be related.

A man dressed in black with a black ski mask confronted the clerk of the 7-Eleven store just before 4 a.m. in the 6800 block of Buffalo Avenue, police said. The bandit made off with $150 from the cash register.

Just after 4:30 a.m., two bandits -- one wearing a black ski mask and the other a black hoodie and pantyhose covering his face, confronted an employee of Horizon Video in the 8600 block of Niagara Falls Boulevard.

The employee told police that one of the bandits produced a rusty hunting knife and demanded his wallet, while the other bandit pushed him behind the counter and demanded nitrous oxide cartridges and inflators. The bandits also made off with $125 from the cash register, police said.

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Guilty plea entered in underage-sex case

LOCKPORT -- A North Tonawanda man pleaded guilty Wednesday in Niagara County Court to having sex with an underage girl in that city Nov. 18.

Aaron M. Coughenour, 22, of Tremont Street, admitted to a reduced charge of attempted second-degree rape of a 14-year-old girl. Judge Matthew J. Murphy III scheduled sentencing for May 19.

In a statement to police that Murphy read aloud in court, Coughenour was quoted as saying he had sex with 200 girls and only caught one sexually transmitted disease. Murphy refused a defense request to reduce Coughenour's $10,000 bail. The defendant remains in the County Jail.

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Wheatfield business victim of $500 theft

WHEATFIELD -- Niagara County sheriff's deputies are investigating the theft of nearly $500 from a Niagara Falls Boulevard business.

Deputies said the owner of the hydroponic storage company Sunlight Solutions reported the theft Monday. A surveillance video shows a man with his hoodie up opening the cash register with a key and removing the contents, deputies said.

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Man wanted as fugitive arrested, found with rifle

ROYALTON -- State police charged a Gasport man as a fugitive on a warrant for aggravated stalking after he was found with a rifle.

Scott J. McQueen, 30, of Humphrey Road, was stopped just before 11 p.m. Monday on Rochester Road and charged with criminal contempt as well as an active warrant for aggravated stalking from the Sarasota County (Fla.) Sheriff's Office. A rifle and ammunition were found in his vehicle, violating an order of protection by the City of Lockport.

He was arraigned in Town of Royalton Court and sent to Niagara County Jail in lieu of $5,000 bail.

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Woman pleads not guilty to felony DWI indictment

LOCKPORT -- A Wheatfield woman whose car was pulled over in North Tonawanda on Sept. 23 pleaded not guilty to a four-count indictment Tuesday in Niagara County Court.

Patricia A. Huber, 39, of Alder Creek Drive, is charged with aggravated and felony driving while intoxicated, failure to dim her high-beams and driving left of center.

Deputy District Attorney Theodore A. Brenner said Huber's blood alcohol content was measured at 0.23 percent after her arrest.

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TVs worth over $8,000 stolen from warehouse

NIAGARA FALLS -- Two 65-inch televisions valued at more than $8,000 were stolen from the warehouse of the Seneca Niagara Casino on Buffalo Avenue, a hotel employee told Niagara Falls police Monday.

The employee said two men kicked in the door to gain entry.

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$2,000 in tools stolen from Ferry Avenue home

NIAGARA FALLS -- Police are investigating the theft of tools valued at $2,000 from a house being worked on in the 1200 block of Ferry Avenue. A door frame was kicked in overnight, police said Wednesday.

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County drug lab to test suspected pot brownies

SANBORN -- Niagara County sheriff's deputies were called to Niagara Vocational High School just before 2:45 p.m. Wednesday to investigate marijuana brownies brought to school by a student.

Principal Melissa Niver said 24 to 26 students had eaten the brownies. The remaining brownies were seized and sent to a county drug lab, deputies said.

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