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Officer chasing suspect in robbery injures knee

NIAGARA FALLS -- A city police officer suffered a knee injury chasing a suspect who reportedly robbed a corner store Saturday night.

Police said the man walked into the Indian General Store on Pine Avenue just after 8 p.m. and began trying on clothes and jewelry. When the owner became concerned that the man would make a dash for the door without paying for the items, he stood next to the suspect and was then grabbed around the neck and told to turn over the money.

After making repeated threats, the robber grabbed $162 from the owner's pockets, kicked him in the ankle and fled down Pine Avenue, police said. Police tracked him to the 1900 block of Walnut Avenue and chased him through yards. Officer Gregory Spagnolo injured a knee when he fell over a fence in the dark, according to reports.

Police said they found Michael D. George, 32, of Buffalo, still wearing a track jacket, some silver rings and a scarf taken from the store, but did not recover the stolen money.

George was charged with third-degree robbery, petit larceny and resisting arrest.


Driver in rollover crash accused of DWI, speeding

NIAGARA FALLS -- A one-car rollover crash early Sunday on Niagara Falls Boulevard led to the arrest of a 20-year-old Sanborn man, police said.

Adam B. Curyto, of Walmore Road, was charged with driving while intoxicated, unlawful possession of marijuana and speeding after his car reportedly struck a utility pole in the 7300 block of Niagara Falls Boulevard and flipped over.

Curyto was not hurt in the 3 a.m. crash, which occurred as he was driving home from a Third Street tavern, police said.


LaSalle-area woman injured in attack on 72nd Street

NIAGARA FALLS -- A 34-year-old woman suffered head injuries Saturday night when she was attacked by two women near her LaSalle-area home, police said.

The victim, a Buffalo Avenue resident, was walking in the 100 block of 72nd Street at about 8:20 p.m. when a woman approached and attacked her, punching her in the head and knocking her to the ground. While down, a man held the victim while her assailant and another woman repeatedly kicked and punched her in the head, police said. She was eventually able to escape and run off.

The victim refused medical treatment, police said.


Police suspect same culprits in two liquor store break-ins

NIAGARA FALLS -- Two Pine Avenue liquor stores were broken into late Saturday or early Sunday, and the similarities in the cases led police to believe that the same culprits may have been responsible for both incidents.

A rear door was pried open to gain entry to City Market Liquors, in the 1800 block of Pine Avenue, sometime between midnight and 3:40 a.m. Sunday. A quick check revealed that six cases of wine were missing from the store, but a more extensive inventory was being planned.

Police said that an electric meter inside the store had been removed in an apparent attempt to disable an alarm system. Damage to the store exceeded $1,200.

An electric meter was also removed in a break-in attempt at Wedge Discount Liquors in the 800 block of Pine Avenue, a short time before the City Market break-in was discovered. Police do not believe entry was made to the store, which also had a 4-by-5 foot plate glass window broken. Damage in that case was estimated at $2,100.


Survivor in train incident still in serious condition

The lone survivor of Friday night's apparent dare-gone-wrong on a Westfield train track remained in serious condition Sunday night in an Erie, Pa., hospital.

Benjamin L. Reed, 26, of Westfield, was flown to Hamot Medical Center after his younger brother and half-brother were pronounced dead at the scene. The bodies of Brian W. Reed, 25, and Justin Halpainy-Livermore, 20, of Jamestown, were transported to Erie County Medical Center for autopsies.

Authorities said the men were struck by a westbound Norfolk Southern freight train at about 6:30 p.m. Friday while trying to run from a bridge between North Portage and North Gale streets.

Westfield Village Police Sgt. Brent Burgess told the Erie Times-News that witnesses told police the men tried outrunning the train. Burgess said the tracks run over a deep gorge and the brothers couldn't jump.

The incident remains under investigation.


Driver pulled from vehicle in crash is hospitalized

A driver was extricated from her vehicle early Sunday after a crash at Doat Street and Rapin Place, Rural/Metro Medical Services reported.

Buffalo police said a vehicle traveling on Doat spun out of control and struck a building just before 4 a.m. The crash sent the driver and one passenger to Erie County Medical Center for treatment. The driver, a 23-year-old female, was in stable condition Sunday evening.

Their identities were not released, and the crash remained under investigation late Sunday.