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Buffalo man avoids jail in nautical thefts

LOCKPORT – Three years’ probation was the sentence Wednesday for a Buffalo man who part in the June 15 theft of two personal watercrafts in North Tonawanda.

Robert L. Smith, 50, of Gold Street, had pleaded guilty before Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon to fifth-degree criminal possession of stolen property.

He was one of three Buffalo residents arrested after the theft at Bow and Stern Marine on River Road. A passing motorist called North Tonawanda police, finding it suspicious that two of the watercrafts would be hauled away on a trailer being towed by a truck at 1 a.m.

Jessica K. Brown, 32, of East Northrup Place, pleaded guilty to third-degree grand larceny and is in the judicial diversion program of court-supervisor drug treatment. Michael A. West, 35, of Dewey Street, is under indictment, but he’s currently in jail in Pennsylvania on another larceny charge.