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POLICE & COURTS

Driver faces charges after putting car in ravine

A one-car accident Sunday morning led to the arrest of a Strykersville man on charges of driving while intoxicated, disorderly conduct and marijuana possession, the Erie County Sheriff's Office said.

The car driven by Richard P. Burr, 31, went off Strykersville Road into a ravine at about 7 a.m., Deputies Kristen Rozycki and Russ Tyzka reported.

Deputies said they found Burr walking along the road, and said he became belligerent and combative when they approached him.

They said he had to be physically subdued, and that he sustained minor injuries that required hospital treatment.

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Suspended constable arrested on assault charges

ST. CATHARINES, Ont. -- A police constable is held pending a bail hearing after he was arrested Sunday and charged with two counts of assault, Niagara Regional Police report.

Constable Frank Dean Rudge, 47, was taken into custody after an investigation into a report by a Welland woman that a man had assaulted her on Friday. Rudge currently is suspended from duty on unrelated matters.

A veteran of 25 years on the force, he was charged in 2007 with breach of trust for allegedly providing inside information to members of the Niagara chapter of the Hells Angels motorcycle gang.

In 2003, he was banned from carrying weapons for two years after he pleaded guilty to assault causing bodily harm in a domestic dispute.

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Parked police cruiser struck from behind, 2 people hurt

A crash involving a parked police cruiser sent two people to Erie County Medical Center on Sunday afternoon, including a female officer.

The driver of a Jeep Cherokee struck two parked vehicles and a lamppost near Elmwood Avenue and Bidwell Parkway, then continued on, eventually slamming into the police car from behind.

The cruiser was parked on the Scajaquada Expressway near Delaware Avenue, as the officer investigated another incident.

Charges are pending for the driver of the Jeep, and police are investigating whether alcohol played a role.

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Two snowmobiles stolen from Coomer Road home

NEWFANE -- A pair of snowmobiles were reported stolen Sunday from an area behind a Coomer Road residence, Niagara County sheriff's deputies say.

The Arctic Cat machines were valued at $5,000 apiece and had been stored atop pallets about 500 feet behind the victim's home, near a ravine and tree line. The snowmobiles were last seen intact on Jan. 2, deputies said.

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Hot tub stolen from cottage undergoing renovation

WILSON -- A whirlpool hot tub, still in its packing crate, was stolen recently from a cottage on Sunset Island, Niagara County sheriff's deputies report.

The cottage is undergoing some renovation while the owner is away, deputies said, and was entered sometime prior to Jan. 8. A deadbolt was drilled out on an outdoor shed, as well, but it was not immediately known whether anything was missing there, deputies said.

The hot tub was valued at $1,200. Investigators are probing whether a recent divorce action played any role in the incident.

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Police investigating theft impound suspect's car

NIAGARA FALLS -- Police said that a woman may have been trying to purchase narcotics when she was robbed of $20 Sunday morning.

The incident occurred at 11:30 a.m. in the 600 block of 25th Street, where the victim said that a man tried to grab all her money as she offered him $5 for gas.

An acquaintance with the victim at the time told police they were attempting to purchase narcotics from the man when he suddenly became violent.

The man tore a $20 bill in half and then fled from the scene in his car, being chased by the victim in her vehicle. A police officer noticed the chase and tried to stop the fleeing suspect, but he jumped from his vehicle and eluded police on foot.

The victim told police that the man also choked and punched her prior to trying to steal her money. The suspect's car was impounded by police and towed from the scene.

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Police search for gunman who fired at man in his car

A man was being sought in connection with the attempted shooting of another man Sunday morning on Titus Avenue.

A 28-year-old victim told police that the gunman fired at least four shots at him as he was seated in his car.

When the man attempted to drive away, the gunman ran up to the car and threatened him, according to a Buffalo police report.

He then stuck a chrome revolver inside the driver's side window and fired two more shots, one of which went through the man's Carhartt pants and lodged in the seat.

The gunman fled through a Titus Avenue driveway.

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