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Disease causes maples to drop leaves early

WATERTOWN -- Some maple trees throughout Jefferson County are dropping leaves now, rather than in autumn when they typically do.

Officials from the state Department of Environmental Conservation said the early defoliation is not a major concern and there is no threat to the tree when limbs go bare before September or October.

DEC forester Michael P. Giocondo said the defoliation is caused by the fungal disease Rhytisma, or tar spot.

Symptoms of the disease first appear in late spring or early summer. The infected leaves develop light green or yellow spots that eventually form into black, tarlike bubbles on the surface of the leaves.

"Heavy infestations can cause some of that early leaf drop-off," Giocondo said. "It's most common in the Norway maples. It can happen in sugar maples, but it won't affect the quality of syrup. It may affect the yields, though."

-- Watertown Daily Times



Driver runs over dad's girlfriend in driveway

KEESEVILLE (AP) -- State police said Saturday a northern New York woman died when she was run over by her boyfriend's daughter in his driveway.

Police said Rebecca J. Dermody, 50, of Port Douglas and her boyfriend were standing on the driver's side of his daughter's vehicle at about 1:30 a.m. Saturday when the younger woman backed up and ran Dermody over.

The driver, Jessielynne Tennian, 20, had just driven the couple to the home in Keeseville.

The Press-Republican of Plattsburgh reported that Tennian was arraigned on charges of second-degree manslaughter and driving while intoxicated. She was sent to Clinton County Jail on $10,000 bail or $20,000 bond.

Her father, Thomas Tennian, was charged with obstruction and disorderly conduct for allegedly interfering with the investigation.



Jeep hits, kills woman who was mowing lawn

KINGSBURY (AP) -- Police said Saturday a woman mowing her lawn was killed after being struck by an out-of-control car near the Vermont border.

The Washington County Sheriff's Office said Terry Brownell, 48, was mowing her lawn in Kingsbury on Saturday morning when she was struck and killed by Jeep Cherokee that veered off the road.

The accident 50 miles north of Albany is under investigation.



Music school student dies in fall from dorm

ROCHESTER (AP) -- Police said Saturday a 19-year-old Eastman School of Music student died after a fall from an upper-floor of a dormitory.

Rochester police said the unidentified student was found on a sidewalk in front of the dormitory around 3 a.m. Saturday.

WHEC-TV reported that the student was said to be on the 12th floor just prior to his death. Police are investigating the cause of the fall.

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