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Olean man, 43, arrested after shooting, standoff

OLEAN – Christopher T. Beach, 43, a tenant at 927 Buffalo St. who shot a man during a standoff Tuesday with city police, Cattaraugus County sheriff’s deputies and state troopers, was charged with first-degree assault and second-degree criminal possession of a weapon, Police Chief Jeffrey L. Rowley announced

The chief said Police Officer James Marcellin went to the apartment building with City Marshal Richard Cousins and Steve Bryer, a representative of the property owner, to force Beach, who had already been notified of his impending eviction, to get out of the building about 10:55 a.m. Beach refused to open the door and instead fired several gunshots through the door, striking Bryer once in the torso.

After Bryer was taken from the building and sent to Olean General Hospital for treatment of his gunshot wound, a perimeter was set up about the building, and other tenants were safely evacuated, Rowley said.

The Olean Emergency Response Team was activated by the Police Department, and assistance was requested from both the Sheriff’s Office and the State Police. Olean Police Capt. Robert Blovsky negotiated with Beach for several hours before communications broke down and tear gas was fired into the suspect’s flat with a State Police armored tactical vehicle on the scene as a precaution.

Beach left his apartment to get fresh air and several troopers rushed him and forcibly took him into custody at about 5:30 p.m., according to Rowley. Beach is scheduled to be arraigned in City Court on Wednesday.

Rowley said he wanted to issue public thanks for the assistance he and his department received in the standoff from the State Police, the Sheriff’s Office, Village of Allegany police and the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

“All those agencies assisted us and it proved to result in a safe resolution to this dangerous situation,” Rowley said.

Medina man admits guilt in scheme to sell stimulant

Allen M. Young, 39, of Medina, pleaded guilty before Chief U.S. District Judge Frank P. Geraci Jr. on Tuesday to possession with intent to distribute the illicit stimulant drug methylone.

U.S. Attorney William J. Hochul Jr. said Young faces a prison term of up to 30 years and a fine of up to $2 million when he is sentenced June. 17. Peter Viera, 23, of the Town of Tonawanda, also faces a similar sentence May 5.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Frank T. Pimentel said the Orleans County Major Felony Crime Task Force found that between October 2011 and mid-December 2012, Young and Viera were obtaining methylone from China and that Young was distributing it. During a police chase Dec. 13, 2013, Young crashed his car in Ridgeway and escaped on foot.

In Young’s car, task force agents found nine rounds of .50-caliber ammunition, and nearby, in a backpack that Young dropped, they found 1.8 pounds of methylone and about a pound of marijuana.

Young has been in custody since he was arrested Feb. 14, 2013, in Erie, Pa. A subsequent court-approved search of Young’s home led to the seizure of seven firearms, according to Hochul.

Fire at vacant Buffalo house causes $60,000 in damage

Damage to a vacant 2½-story wooden house at 722 E. Delavan Ave. in Buffalo was estimated at $60,000 in a fire that was reported at 5:50 p.m. Tuesday.

The house lacked any furniture, and no damage was listed to contents in the largely vacant building. The cause of the fire that began on the first floor and spread to the second floor and attic remained under investigation.

Bird flying into power site leads to an outage in Falls

NIAGARA FALLS – A bird that flew into the National Grid substation on Buffalo Avenue knocked out electricity to about 3,000 customers from about 4:30 p.m. Tuesday to about 6 p.m.

National Grid said that all electricity was restored after the dead bird was removed from the substation equipment.

Man struck by car in Falls suffers serious head injuries

NIAGARA FALLS – A 69-year-old man suffered “significant head injuries” when he was struck by a car Tuesday morning as he was crossing Hyde Park Boulevard, Police Capt. Angela Munn said in a statement.

The pedestrian was walking near the former police station on Hyde Park, near Sherwood Avenue, when he was hit by a car at about 6:50 a.m.

The driver of the car, identified as a 26-year-old man, was making a left turn off of Sherwood when he hit the pedestrian, police said.

The victim, whose name was not immediately released, suffered head injuries, a broken clavicle and broken ribs.

He was taken to Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo, where he was listed in critical condition.

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