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Sheriff’s dispatcher in custody on vehicular assault charge

A 28-year-old dispatcher for the Erie County Sheriff’s Officer was in custody Tuesday night to await court action on a charge of vehicular assault and other counts arising from a traffic accident late Monday on Route 5 in Hamburg that has left two other men critically injured.

Thomas Gilray Jr., was being held in lieu of $5,000 bail and has been suspended from his job in the sheriff’s department without pay.

In addition to the vehicular assault charfge, he faces charges of driving while intoxicated, reckless endangerment, and failing to stop for an emergency vehicle.

Gilray is accused of driving his pickup truck through a police accident site about 11 p.m. Monday on Route 5 near Milestrip Road and striking a 61-year-old Hamburg man and a 32-year-old Duchess County man who were out of their cars after an earlier accident that was caused by icy road conditions, investigators said.

Both victims were listed in critical condition Tuesday evening in Erie County Medical Center but their names have not been released.

Police were clearing the roadway from the earlier accident when Gilray allegedly drove through warning barriers, according to police reports. He was taken into custody after refusing to submit to sobriety tests or to take an alcohol tes