Showing posts from June 5, 2011

What's Up at the City Fire Station?

The ladder on Tower One for agility testing for prospective firefighters.

Some of the Derby Drivers ...


More from Derby Day ...

Probably the only thing faster than the cars was this chipmunk who got off the track just in time.

It's Derby Day in Bradford

These two racers zip down Dorothy Lane during the annual Bradford Mastercraft All-American Soap Box Derby. Below, Stefan Arlington talks with derby organizer Steve Feldman during 100.1 The HERO's live broadcast from the event.

Juveniles Keep Bradford Police Busy

Juveniles kept Bradford City Police busy late Friday and early Saturday. Officers got calls about kids loitering on Main Street and causing a disturbance on Bushnell Street. They also got complaints about juveniles on Barbour Street and another group on Main Street, according to the complaint report and request sheet.

Police looked into reports of criminal mischief on South Avenue and Pike Street, a traffic problem on Davis Street, a fight on Main Street and noise on Edna Avenue. They also got reports of a public drunk at Elm and High streets and an animal complaint at a Mechanic Street establishment.

Fatal Crash on Route 219 in Elk County

A Brockport man is dead following an accident last night on Route 219 in Horton Township in Elk County.

State police say 57-year-old Clarence Russell was apparently speeding at about 10:15 p.m. when his pickup truck went off the road and hit a guiderail. The truck then went back onto the road, traveled across both lanes, went off the road again, hit another guiderail and rolled over.

Russell was taken by ambulance to Elk Regional Health Center, where he was pronounced dead about an hour after the accident.

Woman Fights with 'Other Woman'

An East Otto, New York, woman is facing charges after getting into a fight with her husband’s girlfriend.

Sheriff’s deputies say 50-year-old Rebecca Anderson got into the fight with the other woman at around 12:10 a.m. Friday. She was charged with harassment and released on her own recognizance.

About 10 minutes before that incident, sheriff’s deputies were just down the road at the home of 28-year-old Regis Lilly, who allegedly got into fight with a neighbor.

Lilly was charged with assault and sent to jail on $500 bail.

Anderson and Lilly are both due back in court on June 27.

Young Presents Overdue Military Awards

By Dan Toomey
Director of Communications

OLEAN – Decades after serving aboard the USS Oriskany in the Vietnam War, U.S. Navy veteran Gary Clark of West Almond finally was awarded two service medals honoring the former Petty Officer 3rd Class for his years of wartime service.

Over 45 years later, Petty Officer Clark received the thanks he deserved when Senator Catharine Young (R,I,C –Olean) personally pinned the Vietnam Service Medal with one bronze campaign star and the Navy Unit Commendation onto his chest as part of a special ceremony Friday at the Crossroads Conference Center in Belmont.

“America’s brave veterans have made unparalleled sacrifices for our country and it was my great honor to present these long overdue awards to Petty Officer Clark. He earned these medals and should have gotten them long ago. I am just glad that his family was finally able to see him get the recognition he deserved,” said Senator Young.

Senator Young said the delay resulted from an omission on Petty Offic…

Five Years Ago Today:
'Bucky' Shoots First of Three Troopers

WESB/WBRR News Director

It was 5 years ago today that the hunt for Ralph “Bucky” Phillips went into high gear when he shot the first of three state troopers during the largest manhunt in New York state history.

Phillips escaped from the Erie County Correctional Facility in Alden on April 2, 2006, and was being sought by police for not only the escape but for the burglary of an Ellington, New York, gun store, where 41 guns were taken.

Some of those guns were eventually recovered at the Ludlow home of Todd Nelson. Nelson was charged with hindering the apprehension of Phillips and harboring a fugitive and was sentenced to 6 to 12 months in prison.

But it was on June 10, 2006, that the search effort heated up. It was that day that Phillips shot and wounded state trooper Sean Brown during a traffic stop near Elmira, New York.

Phillips was on the run for three more months throughout Western New York and McKean and Warren counties. The then-fugitive was helped by numerous people …

Whitcomb: Man Posing as Cop Tries to
Abduct Woman in Cattaraugus County

Sheriff’s deputies are investigating an attempted kidnapping by a man posing as a police officer.

Cattaraugus County Sheriff Timothy Whitcomb says that at around 4 o’clock Thursday afternoon a woman was driving on Route 394 in the Town of Coldspring when the man pulled her over and ordered her to get out of her car. When she refused, he grabbed her wrist and tried to force her to get out of the car. She fought him off and he fled the scene.

Whitcomb says the man was driving a large, dark-colored sedan with a flashing blue emergency light in the windshield. The car did not have any police markings on it. The man is white, in his 40s and about 5-feet, 10-inches tall with a medium build and blue/green eyes. He was wearing a light blue uniform-type shirt, dark-colored uniform-type pants and a gray Stetson hat.

Whitcomb asks that anyone with information about the man or the vehicle contact the sheriff’s office. He also urges people to use caution and common sense when being pulled over by an …

Salamanca Drug Lab Dismantled

Federal agents helped Salamanca Police and sheriff’s deputies uncover and dismantle a drug lab in Salamanca Thursday morning.

Police got a tip about a possible drug lab on Kent Boulevard and called the federal Drug Enforcement Agency, and the Southern Tier Regional Drug Force for help.

They found a small box lab created to manufacture the drug Dimethyltryptamine, also known as DMT. It is a Schedule 1 powerful hallucinogenic controlled substance, according to sheriff’s deputies.

The lab was dismantled and all hazardous materials were disposed of. Verification testing is ongoing by the State Police crime lab, and charges are pending.

Deputies say no additional information will be released until they receive the test results.

Lives of Identical Twin Friars Celebrated at
St. Bonaventure University Services

By Tom Missel
Director of Media Relations/Marketing

Two men who lived their lives in simple, dedicated service to others were laid to rest Thursday on a hill overlooking the place they spent 40 years of their lives.

The lives of identical twins Adrian and Julian Riester, brothers in the Franciscan Order of Friars Minor who died at the age of 92 on June 1, were celebrated Thursday at a prayer service at St. Bonaventure University and at a hilltop burial service at St. Bonaventure Cemetery across the street.

In his homily, Fr. Peter Schneible, O.F.M., described what it was like living with the twins in an apartment complex in the St. Bonaventure Friary for more than 20 years.

“Living with Adrian and Julian was like living with church mice. Often, I had no idea whether they were up there (upstairs), they were so quiet,” Fr. Peter said.

The twins’ quiet demeanor is now known worldwide as millions around the globe have read stories about their simple lives. More than 50,000 people shared the s…

Several Thefts, MVAs in Bradford

Bradford City Police on Thursday investigated thefts on Barbour and Park streets and on North Kendall Avenue, and motor vehicle accident on North Bennett Street and North Kendall, according to the complaint report and request sheet.

Officers got reports of loitering and prowling on School Street, harassment on Main Street, criminal mischief on Park Street and a disturbance on West Corydon Street.

Police also got calls about juveniles on Congress Street and Belleview Avenue, an unwanted person on Osborne Place and “pest control” on Jackson Avenue.

Man Who Killed PennDOT Worker While
DUI Sentenced to 4 to 10 Years in Prison

The man who was under the influence of drugs when he hit and killed a PennDOT worker in October has been sentenced to 4 to 10 years in prison, according to McKean County District Attorney Ray Learn.

42-year-old Donald Blocher of Salamanca, New York, was charged in the death of Jack Griffin. The accident happened in a work zone on Olean Road in Foster Township. PennDOT worker James Burrows was also severely injured in the crash.

Blocher was on his way home from an appointment at BRMC at the time of the crash and was under the influence of eight drugs, including valium, muscle relaxants and marijuana.

Alleged Child Predator Picked Up

A man accused of trying to lure a child at an elementary school last June and of approaching another young girl late last month has been picked up at a homeless shelter in Cleveland, Ohio.

40-year-old David Lopus of Ashville, New York, was taken into custody as a fugitive from justice on Thursday. He remains in custody in Cleveland, awaiting extradition to Warren County.

Lopus is accused of trying to make contact with an 11-year-old at the Sugar Grove Elementary School last June. When he attempted to lure the girl into a nearby portable toilet, she ran for help.

Then on May 24 at the Sunset Trailer Park in Conewango Township Lopus allegedly approached another young girl.

Teens Killed in Elk County ATV Crash

UPDATE: The boys have been identified as Steven Glatt of St. Marys and Allen Gursky of Weedville.

Two 16-year-old Elk County boys are dead following an ATV crash last night on Mount Zion Road in Jay Township.

Police did not release the boys’ names but say one is from St. Marys and the other from Weedville.

Police say the ATV was on the gravel-improved dirt road at 9:45 p.m. when it went out of control, left the road and hit several trees. Both boys were thrown from the vehicle and also hit the trees.

They say it appears the ATV was traveling too fast for conditions and neither of the boys was wearing any type of safety equipment.

I-86 Lanes Re-Opened

The New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT) today announced that Interstate 86 was re-opened to traffic at 1:30 p.m. between Exit 20 (Casino) and Exit 18 (NY Route 280, Allegany State Park, Quaker Run Area) in the towns of Red House and Cold Spring, Cattaraugus County and the Seneca Nation. Today’s re-opening is the result of NYSDOT accelerating the construction of a single, westbound, temporary lane to allow for continuous travel on westbound Interstate 86 while repairs continue on a slope failure that occurred on May 31, 2011.

Both eastbound and westbound traffic on Interstate 86 are reduced to a single lane of traffic between Exit 20 and Exit 18. The eastbound lane will remain closed to provide a safe separation for eastbound and westbound traffic until the final repair to Interstate 86 westbound is completed.

Motorists are reminded that fines are doubled for speeding in a work zone. In accordance with the Work Zone safety Act of 2005, convictions of two or mor…

Motorcycle Hits Deer on Route 417

An Allegany man escaped serious injury when his motorcycle hit a deer early Monday morning on Route 417.

Sheriff’s deputies say 59-year-old Douglas Chapin was on 417 in the Town of Great Valley at about 4:30 a.m. when a deer ran into the road. Chapin was thrown from the bike but deputies say he was walking around when they got there.

He was taken to Olean General Hospital for observation and was ticketed for not driving at a reasonable speed.

Woman Charged with Welfare Fraud

An Olean woman is accused of getting more than $4,000 in public assistance that she was not entitled to.

Sheriff’s deputies say 38-year-old Tina Bell did not report her job and wages on her applications to the county social services department from October of 2007 to October of 2008. She allegedly received $4,080 in cash assistance and food stamps.

Bell is charged with welfare fraud, grand larceny and offering a false instrument for filing.

Teenager Accused of Stealing Car

A Findley Lake teenager is accused of stealing a car and then driving another teen to Corry, PA.

Chautauqua County Sheriff’s deputies say 17-year-old Taylor Treacle took the car from a garage on Route 426 then drove the 14-year-old to Corry. Deputies saw the car in Sherman, New York.

Treacle was charged with burglary, unauthorized use of a motor vehicle and endangering the welfare of a child, and was sent to jail on $500 bail.

Court Issues Restraining Order Against
NY Tax Collection on Cigrette Sales

Less than 24 hours after a judge ruled that New York can start collecting taxes on Native American cigarette sales, another court granted a restraining order that will block the tax collection.

The Appellate Division of State Supreme Court has granted the Seneca Nation a temporary restraining order until June 20.

Seneca President Robert Odawi Porter issued a similar statement to the one he issued on Wednesday, and said there will be no change in the nation’s stand that it will never be a tax collector for New York State.

April's Sunshine Report


Megan Minich is New United Way Director

Megan R. Minich has been named Executive Director for the United Way of the Bradford Area, according to John Peterson, president of the United Way board of directors.

The announcement was made on Wednesday June 8, 2011.

“The Personnel Committee, as well the members of the Executive Board, have spent the past several weeks in performing a search, conducting interviews, and ultimately arriving at this decision regarding the new Executive Director. Megan’s job performance in her previous role as Community Relations and Marketing Specialist has been outstanding, and she has fully lived up to the Board of Director’s expectations in her performance of duties and responsibilities that accompanied that position,” states Peterson. “The Board has full confidence in Megan’s ability to lead the United Way of the Bradford Area, hopefully for many years to come.”

The United Way of the Bradford Area is a non-profit organization with the mission of raising and distributing funds for the purpose of com…

Senate Passes Bill to Ban Texting,
Cell Phone Use While Driving

HARRISBURG - The Senate today passed legislation sponsored by Senator Tommy Tomlinson (R-Bucks) and supported by Senator John Rafferty, Chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee that would prohibit the use of handheld cell phones and texting while driving and set new guidelines for junior drivers.

Tomlinson said Senate Bill 314 would impose a ban on handheld cell phones for all drivers, regardless of age. Hands-free cell phone use would still be permitted by drivers who do not have a learners permit or junior driver's license. The bill would make it a primary offense for all drivers to text, email, browse the internet and instant message. SB 314 would make it a secondary offense to use a cell phone while driving – meaning the driver would have to first be pulled over for a primary offense.

The only exceptions would include:

~~Drivers contacting 511 service, 911 or wireless E-911.

~~When a vehicle is stopped due to traffic obstruction and the vehicle is in park or neutral.


Porter: Seneca Nation Will Appeal

Seneca President Robert Odawi Porter says the Nation will file papers with the Appellate Division of the State Supreme Court in regard to today's court decision allowing the state to collect taxes on cigarettes sold by Indian retailers to non-Indians.

In a news release, Porter says, no matter what the court decides, the Seneca Nation will never collect taxes for New York State.

The Senecas say immunity from taxes by a centuries-old federal treaty is the law of the land.

Court Rules Against Seneca Nation

The New York State Supreme Court has ruled against the Seneca Nation of Indians, which means the state can start collecting taxes on cigarette sales to non-Indians.

A lower court ruled last month that the state could start the collection, but the next day another court put an injunction in place barring the collection.

Neither the state nor the nation has made a comment yet.