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From the blotter / Niagara County police calls, June 15 to 21

>June 15

A Niagara Falls man told city police that he was approached at 8:30 p.m. at a vigil for a friend at 63rd Street and Buffalo Avenue when a man with a beard and partially gray hair threatened him with an ax.

Martin J. Johnston, 46, of Church Street, Lockport, was stopped by Lockport police at 2:50 a.m. on Cottage Street for inadequate taillights and failure to keep right, and also charged with driving while intoxicated, according to reports.

Valuable mink, sable, and leather coats, as well as a coin collection, laptops, camcorders and jewelry, were stolen between noon and 5 p.m. from an apartment in the 700 block of Walnut Avenue after a door was forced open, Niagara Falls police reported. Total loss was estimated at more than $12,000.

The Lewiston owner of an apartment in the 2100 block of Lockport Street in Niagara Falls told city police he hadn't checked on the place since December and in that time, the doorknobs, copper pipes and appliances were stolen and tiles, counter tops and glass were damaged. Loss was more than $3,400.

Suspected of abandoning her child, Saprina D. Banks, 24, of 80th Street, was charged by Niagara Falls police. Police were called to a corner store on 18th Street after 9 p.m., after a woman said she was asked to watch the child at 4 p.m. Banks had not returned for her child, police said. Child Protective Services was called after the 2-year-old girl was found with scabs on her head and suspected nasal infection.

A Niagara Falls man found his window open at 9 p.m. in the 2200 block of Falls Street and narcotic prescriptions, a game system and a rack of DVDs stolen.

Christine K. Crawford, 30, of Fifth Street, was charged by Niagara Falls police with felony second-degree burglary and fourth-degree grand larceny. A man who met her a week ago said a game system, 12 games and three Guitar Hero guitars were stolen from his house while he was at work, according to police reports. Value of the items was estimated at $880.


>June 16

Roving Anti-Crime Unit officers noticed a hand-to-hand exchange in a high-traffic drug area at 5:15 p.m. in the 1500 block of Ashland Avenue in Niagara Falls and charged Pamela J. Pike, 48, of Linwood Avenue, and Edward A. Cusatis, 48, of 19th Street, with loitering. Pike additionally was charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance after she removed a napkin with crack cocaine from her pocket and tried to shove it into the grill of the unmarked patrol car, police reported.

A Ransomville man told Niagara Falls police that in the past week, someone forced open a padlock in the garage of property he owns in the 2100 block of 11th Street, and took the copper fittings and two lawn mowers valued at $875.

Marc E. Lasher, 22, of Michigan Avenue, was charged by Niagara Falls police with unreasonable speed, reckless driving, failure to yield to an emergency vehicle and disorderly conduct. Police said Lasher refused to stop at 2:25 a.m. and drove away at a high rate of speed. Another man at Lasher's home, Nicholas J. Casilio, 23, of Michigan Avenue, who would not stop yelling at police, was charged with obstructing governmental administration, according to police reports.

A 19-year-old Niagara Falls man told police he was attacked at 1 a.m. on 20th Street in a gang fight and suffered a 3-inch cut on his forehead. He told Niagara Falls police that the fight started between him and another teen, but then 25 other males started chasing him with bats and an unknown male broke a beer bottle across his forehead.

The regional property manager of Phillips Edison Co. told Niagara Falls police that someone ripped a hole in the roof of a vacant building in the 8200 block of Niagara Falls Boulevard, causing $7,500 in damage in an unsuccessful attempt to gain entry.

An employee at Salon Nouveau on Sawyer Road in Wheatfield told sheriff's deputies that overnight, someone broke a padlock to gain entry, cut the wires, and stole a $2,000 air conditioner. An older model pickup was reportedly in the area removing scrap.

A 24-year-old Lewiston woman was found by Niagara Falls police with multiple scratches and bruises. She said she was raped by a man who she fought with after he sold her cell phone for crack just after 5 a.m.

A Main Street florist got hit twice by a morning burglary. Police said they drove by at 4 a.m. and called the owner of Harris and Lever Florist when they noticed a cracked window in the glass door, but no entry was made. The owner arrived at 8 a.m. and found the window had been smashed further and someone took $150 from the cash register, and 50 pieces of costume jewelry, bracelets and necklaces valued at $600.


>June 17

Niagara Falls narcotics detectives planned a raid, but discovered that their target, Ronnie Chandler, 24, formerly of Niagara Street, already had been evicted. Narcotics Detective Lt. Kelly Rizzo said police later got a tip and found Chandler walking around on 19th Street, where he was dealing crack cocaine. Following a chase, Chandler was caught and the crack was recovered at 7:30 p.m. on Welch Avenue, Rizzo said, and Chandler was charged with third- and fourth-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. He was ordered held on $50,000 bail. "He's been a persistent problem," Rizzo said. "Chandler was the target of the recent drive-by shooting outside his house in March between Chandler's Bloods and the Eighth Street Boyz. We are trying to clean up that corridor."

While waiting for more information on Chandler, Niagara Falls narcotics detectives and the emergency response team raided a different home in the 1700 block of MacKenna Avenue at 6 p.m. and charged Elton Carr Sr., 39, of that address, with two counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. Police said they found 16 grams of crack cocaine and more than 100 hydrocodone pills. Carr was arraigned and ordered held on $15,000 bail. Lt. Kelly Rizzo said police also are having the FBI look into a DVD system that was making counterfeit copies of movies that were currently playing in theaters.

Julius L. McCain Jr., 36, of Lockport Street, Niagara Falls, was charged with second-degree burglary, endangering the welfare of a child, false personation and petit larceny in connection with thefts of a television, games and game system from a neighbor's property on Niagara Avenue, Falls police reported.


>June 18

A rental car was broken into sometime prior to 8:20 a.m. in an alley behind a Memorial Parkway home, Niagara Falls police said. A rear windshield was smashed and a case containing 30 DVDs was stolen, along with two towels. Loss was set at $430.

A Youngstown woman called Niagara Falls police to report that a tenant at a property she owns on Frontier Avenue had stolen more than $6,000 worth of property upon leaving. The victim told police she let the woman stay in the home rent-free so that it would be occupied, and that she apparently left the residence sometime in January. Items stolen from the home included aluminum siding and gutters, an air conditioner, a sink, toilet, electrical box and some carpeting.

A Falls Street woman told Niagara Falls police that while she was out between 11:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m., someone entered her unlocked garage and stole an oversized wheelchair valued at $300.

Cary J. Attfield, 50, was arrested after a burglary-in-progress call at the former Zajac's Tavern on 24th Street, Niagara Falls police said. The Niagara Street resident was found inside the building shortly after 3 p.m. in possession of a cigarette lighter from the building. He was charged with third-degree burglary and petit larceny, according to reports.

A pickup and lawn furniture were targeted in two thefts overnight on Forest Avenue, Niagara Falls police reported. A 1999 Chevrolet pickup worth $4,000 was stolen off the street in the 2700 block, police said. A lawn chair and a tea cart were stolen from a backyard gazebo in the 2200 block. The loss was estimated at $880.


>June 19

A Niagara Falls Boulevard woman complained to Niagara Falls police that a man drove off in her car about noon without her permission. Police later charged Shawn B. Stephens, 42, of Ashland Avenue, with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

A resident of the 900 block of Ontario Avenue told Niagara Falls police that her apartment was broken into and $200 was taken from a hiding place in her dresser. Police said the intruder or intruders threw hot sauce on the woman's bed, wall and carpeting.

An employee of a store in the 2200 block of Hyde Park Boulevard told Niagara Falls police that a fellow employee may have taken all of the $20 bills out of the cash register and fled. He said he noticed that the money was missing at about 6:30 p.m., when he opened the register to wait on a customer. Investigators said a store videotape clearly showed a woman removing money from the cash register and handing it over the counter to a male accomplice before they both left the store.

Niagara Falls police made two drunken driving arrests. Christopher M. Ramirez, 31, of 62nd Street, was arrested in a restaurant parking lot on Niagara Falls Boulevard at 12:47 a.m. He was charged with aggravated driving while intoxicated. Kennith L. Graham, 49, was arrested at 2:15 a.m. at his South Avenue residence. He was charged with DWI, felony aggravated unlicensed operation, failure to signal a turn and not wearing a seat belt. Police said his driver's license had been revoked due to a prior DWI incident.

A Sixth Street man reported that a rental television was stolen from his home in the wake of a police raid recently. The victim told Niagara Falls police that he was briefly incarcerated following the raid and that, upon returning home, he discovered that the TV set and a cellular telephone had been taken from the residence. Loss was estimated at $1,270.

David W. Albone, 57, of East High Street, Lockport, was charged by State Police with felony driving while intoxicated because of a previous conviction. He was charged at 11:18 p.m. in the Town of Lockport after police found him passed out behind the wheel at Keck and Akron roads, troopers said.


>June 20

A 22nd Street man told Niagara Falls police that an acquaintance robbed him at gunpoint of a quantity of marijuana, $200 in cash and a cell phone while they were in a car shortly after midnight at a filling station on 19th Street.

A Welch Avenue man reported that a large rock was thrown through the front window of his Niagara Falls apartment about 10:45 a.m. June 20, causing damage estimated at $200.

A visitor from New Brunswick said a Nintendo system and about 21 video games were taken from his car while it was left over the weekend in the parking lot of a First Street hotel in Niagara Falls. Police in the city said there was no sign of forced entry.

A Ferry Avenue woman told Niagara Falls police that somebody pried open a lock to enter her garage at about 3 a.m. and stole a stereo and speaker system from her car.

State Police said they charged William J. Vanderbosch, 27, of Chestnut Road, Wilson, with second-degree reckless endangerment and endangering the welfare of a child at 3:23 p.m., after he threw a laptop computer on the floor during a domestic dispute in the area of an infant child. The computer struck the child, causing minor injuries. The child was treated and released from Eastern Niagara Hospital in Newfane, troopers said.

Gary Milstead, 50, of West Green Street, Lockport, was stopped by Lockport police just before midnight on Hawley Street and charged with driving while intoxicated, driving with an open alcoholic beverage, third-degree menacing, and DWI with a blood-alcohol level of 0.18 percent or higher.

Patricia S. Bannon, 22, of Wendy Circle, Lockport, was stopped by Lockport police at 2 a.m. on Remick Parkway and charged with failure to obey a traffic control device and driving while intoxicated, officers reported.


>June 21

Daniel Ramos, 36, of 13th Street, Niagara Falls, who pleaded guilty on March 8 to fifth-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance for selling heroin to police, was sentenced in Niagara County Court by Judge Matthew J. Murphy III to one year in the County Jail.

Jeffrey M. Hare, 34, of East High Street, Lockport, was charged by police in that city with four counts of possession of stolen property, after they found bags and purses with stolen merchandise in a storage area on Price Street.

A tow package assembly valued at $1,500 was reported stolen from a Mercury Mountaineer parked in the 2000 block of Lockport-Olcott Road in Olcott sometime in the past two weeks, according to sheriff's deputies.

Pamela M. Salem, 51, of Birchwood Drive, Lockport, was stopped by State Police after a report of an erratic driver on Old Beattie Road in the Town of Lockport. After finding her parked on the curb at a convenience store on Robinson Road in the town, she was charged with aggravated driving while intoxicated, troopers said. They said Salem had a blood-alcohol level of 0.24 percent, three times the legal limit, and was an unlicensed driver.

Benjamin S. Vilonen, 29, of Tonawanda Creek Road, Amherst, was stopped for speeding by State Police at 7:25 p.m. on Campbell Boulevard in Pendleton and charged with driving while intoxicated.

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