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NIAGARA POLICE & COURTS

BOCES student suspended for pointing small gun

SANBORN -- A welding student at the BOCES Niagara Vocational School was suspended Friday after he pointed a pistol lighter small gun at another student, Niagara sheriff's deputies said Tuesday.

The incident occurred just before 9 a.m. The student was suspended for five days by Assistant Principal Anedda Trautman, said police, who added that a warrant for menacing also was issued by Cambria Town Court.

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Woman leaving Falls store is robbed at gunpoint

NIAGARA FALLS -- Police said a Niagara Street woman leaving the Express Mini Mart in the 600 block of 19th Street was robbed of $100 by a man with long-barrel pistol at 3 a.m. Tuesday.

The victim told police that as she grabbed the bandit's jacket, he threatened to "shoot her brains out" if she didn't let go. The bandit ran north toward Pine Avenue, in the alley between 19th and 20th streets.

He robber is described as a black man, between 17 to 18, 5-foot-7 to 5-foot-9, wearing a green camouflage jacket with a white hoodie beneath it.

Police, who examined surveillance footage of the holdup, said the robber was driven to the scene by another person, described as a black male, about the same size and age, wearing a black leather jacket, dark brown shirt with a white and light-brown stripe and driving a white, four-door Jeep.

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Woman sleeping in car is charged with DWI

HARTLAND -- A Checkered Tavern Road woman awoke at about 7:30 a.m. to discover a strange car in her driveway, with the headlights on and still idling, Niagara County sheriff's deputies said.

The woman was unable to awaken the driver, and a small dog also was in the car, deputies added. Niagara County sheriff's deputies charged Jennifer R. Bliss, 30, of Marilla Street, Buffalo, with driving while intoxicated.

Deputies said Bliss, who measure a blood-alcohol level of 0.14 percent, last recalled being at a friend's house on Route 425. Inside the car was an open container of rum, which was almost empty, deputies added.

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Jury selection completed in Carter murder trial

LOCKPORT -- Jury selection was completed Tuesday in Niagara County Court for the trial of Darnell D. Carter, charged with second-degree murder in the March 20, 2009, shooting death of Robert R. Biggs, 39, of Maple Avenue, Niagara Falls.

Opening statements are expected this morning in the case against Carter, 23, of 12th Street, Niagara Falls.

He is charged with being one of four men who took part in the robbery of Biggs on Pierce Avenue, but he's the only person who has been charged. A surveillance videotape from a camera at a nearby store recorded part of the incident.

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Probation ordered in barn burglary, fire

LOCKPORT -- A man who participated in a barn burglary in Hartland that ended with the barn being set afire was granted youthful offender status and was placed on five years' probation Tuesday by Niagara County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III.

The crime occurred July 18, 2008. The 19-year-old Hartland man reportedly tried to extinguish the fire that started with a fellow burglar playing with a flare and setting some hay on fire. Murphy ordered restitution of $24,529 by the man he sentenced Tuesday.

In another sentencing, Murphy gave Marilyn Davidson, 47, of Lake Road, Porter, a conditional discharge for fifth-degree conspiracy. She purchased cocaine in late 2007 from a Niagara Falls drug dealer who was captured in an investigation based on wiretaps obtained by the state attorney general's Organized Crime Task Force.

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Woman, 98, removed after kitchen fire

HARTLAND -- A woman was removed from her home after a fire broke out next to a stove in her home at 3592 South Quaker Road at about 7 a.m. Monday, Niagara County sheriff's deputies said.

The resident, Clara A. Duchow, 98, said she heard the stove backfire and found some items on fire and was able to extinguish the blaze. However, the Hartland Fire Department discovered melted wires near the stove, and Hartland Building Inspector Mark Harmon ruled the house uninhabitable because of several code violations.

The resident was staying with relatives, deputies said.

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Man, 29, arraigned in house burglary

LOCKPORT -- A North Tonawanda man was arraigned Tuesday in Niagara County Court on charges of burglarizing a home on Stenzil Street in North Tonawanda on Oct. 23.

Jason R. Pinney, 29, of Walck Road, pleaded not guilty to second-degree burglary, fourth-degree criminal mischief, petit larceny and fifth-degree criminal possession of stolen property.

Computer game units and audio equipment were reported stolen from the home. Assistant District Attorney Joseph A. Scalzo said in court that some property was recovered by police in a car.

Charges are pending against co-defendant Christopher A. Todaro, 27, of Hagen Avenue, North Tonawanda.

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