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POLICE & COURTS

Man, 34, pleads guilty to HSBC holdups in 2011

A former Buffalo man has pleaded guilty to four local HSBC Bank robberies in 2011, U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. reported Tuesday.

Clifford B. Smith, 34, held up the HSBC branches at 3107 Bailey Ave. on Sept. 29, the 1017 Broadway location on Oct. 21, and the branch at 973 Main St. on both Oct. 25 and Nov. 8, according to Assistant U.S. Attorney Marie P. Grisanti.

Smith made off with about $42,000 in all the holdups, prosecutors said. Smith also pleaded guilty to witness tampering for contacting a woman from prison and urging her to say she was with him when the robberies occurred. The defendant later sent the woman a letter providing her with some of the dates for his failed alibi, Hochul said. Smith faces up to 25 years in prison and a $250,000 fine when sentenced May 6 by U.S. District Court Chief Judge William M. Skretny.

Person of interest sought in Amherst mall stabbing

Amherst police said an unidentified, 18-year-old Buffalo woman is a person of interest in the assault Monday of a security guard at the Macy’s store in the Boulevard Mall.

The security guard was stabbed in the leg Monday when he confronted a suspected shoplifter, police said. The stab wound was not believed to be serious, police said. The guard suffered a small puncture in the thigh at about 6 p.m. and was treated in Erie County Medical Center.

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to contact the Amherst Police at 689-1311.

Meth found in duffel bag leads to charges against two

JAMESTOWN – Methamphetamine was discovered in a duffel bag early Tuesday by Jamestown police conducting a warrant check, officials said.

Aaron Phillips, 34, and Justin M. Meacham, 33, were charged with unlawful manufacture of methamphetamine and seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance. They were held in city jail pending arraignment.

Officers said they observed the two acting suspiciously behind a residence on West Cowden Place at about 4:40 a.m. Materials used for the production of methamphetamine and meth were discovered in a duffel bag that had been removed from the vehicle, police said.

Man, 27, pleads guilty to downloading child porn

LOCKPORT – Downloading a pornographic photo titled “Reason to Go to Brazil” turned out to be a reason for a Lewiston man to plead guilty to a felony Monday in Niagara County Court.

Anthony Agugliaro, 27, of Upper Mountain Road, admitted to a reduced charge of attempted promoting a sexual performance by a child as a sexually motivated felony. The photo, downloaded in November 2013, showed sexual activity by a child younger than 10, Deputy District Attorney Holly E. Sloma said.

Agugliaro faces as long as four years in prison and 10 years’ post-release supervision, plus a spot in the state sex offender registry. County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III will sentence him April 6.

Defense attorney Joel A. Daniels said Agugliaro has been diagnosed on the autism spectrum, and he wanted a longer wait for sentencing so he can present reports on counseling for Agugliaro.

Police round up three in report of shots fired

Buffalo police responding to a call of shots fired Tuesday afternoon in Black Rock recovered a loaded pistol and made three arrests.

Alexander Olivera-Torres, 18, Maria Yulfo, 27, and Jan Olivera-Torres, 22, were charged with second- and third-degree criminal possession of a weapon after they were stopped at about 6 p.m. at Austin and Tonawanda streets.

A handgun loaded with seven rounds of ammunition and a defaced serial number was found, police said. A caller who heard shots fired at Austin and Kail streets saw the suspects them pick up shell casings, police added.

Alexander Olivera-Torres also was charged with fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon, a gravity knife, and possession of marijuana.

9 busted in drug sweep by Wyoming Task Force

WARSAW - The Wyoming County Drug Task Force’s “Operation Tinsel Town” has netted nine arrests for drug charges, officials announced Tuesday.

Facing charges are: Bradley Kirsch, 30, and his wife, Rachelle Kirsch, 23, formerly of the Village of Attica; Frank Wisniewski, 49, of the Town of Attica; Robert Oody, 50, of Silver Springs; Lisa Uveino, 35, of the Village of Warsaw; Brian Boitschenko, 33, of the Town of Warsaw; Alanna Muniak, 25, of Perry; Vincent Eschenlauer, 23, of the Village of Attica; and Rodney Smart, 37, of Silver Lake.

They are accused of possessing or selling drugs, including marijuana, oxycodone, suboxone, clonazepam and cocaine.

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