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From the blotter / Niagara County police calls and court cases, June 4 to 9

June 4

Connie S. Lekki, 50, of 19th Avenue, North Tonawanda, pleaded not guilty to felony DWI, failure to keep right and failure to stay in a designated lane. She was pulled over May 3 in North Tonawanda.

Joseph J. Gregory, 29, of Miller Street, North Tonawanda, drew six months in jail from Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon Farkas to start a five-year probation stint for attempted second-degree robbery. Miller, whom police said was armed with a nail gun, bound a gas station clerk's wrists with plastic zip ties June 26 and made off with $350.

Reginald J. DuBose, 32, of 35th Street, Niagara Falls, was sentenced by Farkas to a year in jail for third-degree auto stripping. DuBose admitted that he smashed the rear window of a Niagara Falls woman's car Sept. 12 to try to dissuade her from testifying against another man in a shooting case.

David E. Laskey, 47, of Ashley Place, Lockport, pleaded guilty to fifth-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance and is to be sentenced by Farkas Sept. 19. Laskey sold morphine to a police informant in the City of Lockport Oct. 17 and 21.

A Lockport an is charged with beating up a woman while her four children tried to stop him. James T. Ryan, 32, of Washburn Street, was arraigned on charges of felony second-degree assault, endangering the welfare of a child and third-degree menacing in City Court on Monday. He was sent to Niagara County Jail on $1,000 bail.

The woman said Ryan came to the Washburn Street house at 10:30 p.m. Friday. The woman said she was punched in the head and face. She said she grabbed her son and told her other three children to follow her outside, but said Ryan was able to catch up to her and continued hitting her, knocking both her and her son to the ground. She said the children were yelling for him to "stop hitting mommy."

Ryan fled before police arrived. He was located the following day and charged.

The U.S. Border Patrol was called to assist after two men pulled over for a traffic infraction were found to be in the country without any proof of citizenship, just after 8 p.m. in the 5700 block of Shawnee Road in Cambria.

The driver, David F. Lopez, 33, and his passenger Pedro Martinez-Barrera, 43, were stopped for swerving on the roadway. Lopez, who said he was from Mexico, produced an Arkansas registration and had Florida license plates, and both pieces of documentation did not match the car they were driving. An investigation determined that one man was from Honduras and the other from Mexico, and the case was turned over to Border Patrol, for further investigation.


June 5

Tools valued at $600 were reported stolen from a vacant house in the 700 block of 19th Street in Niagara Falls on Tuesday.

A man told police that he had been working on the house, and sometime between May 28 and Tuesday someone took an air compressor, a circular saw and a nail gun. He said the house had been locked and found no sign of a forced entry.

A woman who rents storage space in a garage in the 2200 block of Woodlawn Avenue told Niagara Falls police that the garage was forcibly entered and money, clothing and a purse were stolen.

The victim said that sometime between 5 p.m. Friday and 5 p.m. Tuesday someone entered the detached garage and took two coats, $200 in cash and a $500 purse. Total loss was put at $900.

A Town of Lockport man was swindled out of more than $1,600 when he bought an ATV online and never received the vehicle. The Northview Drive man told Niagara County sheriff's deputies Tuesday that he agreed to send a woman $1,625 via Western Union to purchase the ATV, sending the money to a man who called himself a Google account representative.

The Lockport man said that after submitting the payment, he never received the ATV and was unsuccessful in several attempts to contact the woman. Deputies said the vehicle identification number provided for the ATV did not exist.

A Lockport man was charged with stealing from a 85-year-old relative's checking account.

David M. Grimes, 42, of South Transit Road was charged on a warrant by Niagara County sheriff's deputies with forgery and petit larceny just before 10 a.m. Tuesday.

The victim said that sometime between June 2 and 6 four checks were taken from her checkbook and cashed, by someone who forged her signature. She said money was also taken from the same account using her ATM card, which was used without her permission. The woman told deputies that a total of $850 was removed from the account.

Grimes was arraigned in the Town of Lockport and sent to Niagara County Jail without bail by Justice Raymond E. Schilling due to two previous felony convictions in Florida, according to court reports.


June 6

A Niagara Street man who was on probation for felony drug possession was charged with criminal possession of a weapon after he was found with shotgun on Wednesday.

Carmen R. Muzzillo, 27, was charged just before 1 p.m. with fourth-degree criminal possession after a search of his home in the 1200 block of Niagara Street by U.S. probation officers.

Probation officers said they found a 12 gauge shotgun hidden under the cushions of the living room couch. Muzzillo had been convicted of conspiracy to possess 100 kilograms of marijuana in federal court, which is a felony, and makes it illegal for him to possess a firearm, police reported.


June 7

A store employee told Niagara Falls police that he believes that he may have been intentionally distracted by a woman and her child so that a man could steal electronics from his store.

The Radio Shack employee told police that a 2:15 p.m. Thursday a man entered the store in the 7300 block of Niagara Falls Boulevard, talking on his cell phone while he was helping a woman who was asking about a return. He said his co-worker was assisting the woman's child who needed to use the bathroom while he was helping the woman.

He said that after the woman and her child left he walked around the store and discovered a security camera and two digital cameras were missing. Total loss $570.

The suspect, who was carrying a bag, was described as a black male, 6-feet 3-inches, 200 pounds, with short black hair and a goatee.

A 42-year-old man told Niagara Falls police he was injured when he was struck in the back by a large stick following an argument.

He said at 3:30 p.m. he was walking in the 500 block of 17th Street, having a verbal argument with a female, when he bumped into a man. He said the unknown man started arguing with him then struck him on the left side of his back with a stick.

The victim said he left in a car and went home, but then sought medical help several hours later when the pain became worse, reporting the incident to police late Thursday night.


June 8

A Maryland man's car was broken into Friday afternoon very close to the Niagara Falls State Park, police said, one of two car break-ins investigated by police during the afternoon.

The first break-in occurred at First Street and Buffalo Avenue, between 2 and 3:10 p.m. A rear window was smashed out of the vehicle and a purse was taken, along with credit cards and about $200 in cash. The car's windshield was also cracked during the incident, police said.

Two women were training at the Buffalo Wild Wings restaurant on Military Road when their purses were stolen out of a friend's car, police said. The incident occurred between 12:30 and 1:30 p.m. in the city's LaSalle section. The victims, a North Tonawanda woman and a Buffalo resident, each reported losing between $10 and $12 in cash, as well as personal belongings.


June 9

Two unlocked vehicles outside a Quaker Road residence in Gasport were broken into, sheriff's deputies reported. The thefts occurred between 1:30 and 7 a.m., according to reports. Stolen from the vehicles were a global positioning system, four packs of cigarettes and about $45 in coin and small bills.

Niagara Falls police said they anticipate an arrest warrant will be issued for a city man who was spotted climbing a utility pole with the apparent intention of rigging up free cable television for some nearby residents. The 34-year-old man told police he was at a corner store around 6 p.m. when four men living in the Niagara Avenue area approached him, asking if he could give them an illegal cable hookup. A neighbor interrupted the proceedings, calling police, and the suspect fled into a nearby wooded area before being tracked down by police. He told investigators he was given a small amount of money to arrange the hookup.

A burglar pried a padlock off a Ferry Avenue garage and stole $500 worth of lawn care equipment, Niagara Falls police reported. A lawnmower, weed whacker and a leaf blower were stolen, police said. The theft occurred between 11 p.m. Friday and 3:20 p.m. Saturday.

Close to $400 in property was stolen from a Sixth Street woman's car, Niagara Falls police reported.

The woman had loaned her vehicle to another female around 12:30 a.m. and, upon getting the car back four hours later, noticed that her wallet had been emptied and $167 had been taken. Also missing was an iPod and a pair of headphones.

The woman who had borrowed the vehicle told police that she picked up another female, who may have committed the theft while she was inside a convenience store.