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Monday, August 31, 2015
Jesse J. Coia, 23, 53 Maple St., was charged around 3:50 a.m. Sunday with seventh-degree possession of a controlled substance, driving while impaired by drugs, and disobeying a traffic control device. According to the LPD arrest report, Coia was found asleep at the wheel of a van at the intersection of Cottage and Walnut streets. Coia determined him to be impaired by police and a container of Oxymorphone was found. Coia was due in City Court this morning.

Amy S. Bonnett, 49, 97 Webb St., was charged around 2:35 a.m. Sunday with disorderly conduct. According to the arrest report, Bonnett was found sleeping in a vehicle that was not hers on West Avenue. She was due in City Court this morning.

Rachel M. Fronczak, 30, 57 John St., was charged around 7:34 a.m. Friday with second-degree harassment and endangering the welfare of a child. According to the LPD report, Fronczak punched a man in front of a juvenile. She was to be in City Court this morning.

Brock M. Menzel, 35, 7821 Mill Road, Gasport, was charged around 6:35 p.m. Thursday with seventh-degree possession of a controlled substance and unlawful possession of marijuana. According to the LPD report, Menzel was sitting in a vehicle in Kibler Park. When patrol interviewed him, he admitted to having marijuana on him. He was also found to be in possession of a white powder substance, Oxymorphone and suboxone. He was to be in City Court this morning.

Brett R. Gill, 19, 223 N. Transit St. was charged around 8:22 p.m. Friday with second-degree harassment. According to the LPD arrest report, Gill got into a verbal altercation with a man and a woman on North Transit Street. The altercation later turned physical.

Justin T. Pygon, 22, 164 Cottage St., Apt. 2, was charged around 10:50 p.m. Thursday with third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle and an equipment violation. According to the LPD report, Pygon was stopped for a traffic infraction and found to be driving with a suspended license. He was due in City Court this morning.

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Alexis Gregg
UPDATE: Alexis Gregg has been found, according to NCSO.

NEWFANE — The Niagara County Sheriff's Office is asking for the public's help in locating a runaway teen.

According to NCSO, 16-year-old Alexis Gregg left her house on Saturday and has not returned. She was last seen in the area of the Wrights Corners Tops early Sunday morning wearing black yoga pants.

The 5-foot, 3-inch, 105-pound redhead with hazel eyes is known to have friends in the Royalton and Lockport areas.

Police ask that anyone with any information as to Gregg's whereabouts contact the Niagara County Sheriff's Office 24 hours a day at 438-3393 or during normal business hours, speak to Inv. Tracy Steen at 438-3337.

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LTCC’s new Dining Room Manager Mary Beth Roman welcomes members 
 and guests to the club. (CONTRIBUTED PHOTO)
TOWN OF LOCKPORT -- Mary Beth Roman has been promoted to Club Dining Room Manager at the Lockport Town & Country Club.

Roman has been with LTCC for over 15 years and brings a strong knowledge of dining operations, according to the club. Prior to her promotion, Roman served the club as a waitress.

The Lockport Town & Country Club is located at 717 East Avenue in Lockport and caters to all of their members and guests through memorable dining experiences, golfing, and swimming.

To learn more about the Lockport Country Club, visit  or call 716-433-5969.

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The National Weather Service calls for sunny skies today with a high near 83. There will be patchy fog overnight with a low around 65.

Tuesday will be sunny with a high near 85 and a low around 68. Wednesday, there's a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms with a high near 86 and a low around 66. Thursday: A chance of showers and thunderstorms with a high near 85 and a low around 66.

Friday will be mostly sunny with a high near 85 and a low around 65. Saturday will be mostly sunny with a high near 86 and a low around 65. Sunday: Mostly sunny with a high near 86.

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Every movie has two stages of effect on its viewers. There is the initial effect that comes after the movie has ended and the energy of the movie is still vibrant in the viewer’s mind, and there is the lingering effect that comes after the viewer has had time to think about the movie and its premise. The Gift, on the surface, appears to be a brilliant psychological thriller that keeps the viewer engaged right up until the very last minute. But when the initial energy wears off, this movie turns into an incomplete effort at a genre that Alfred Hitchcock could dominate with his eyes closed.

I am going to start off by saying that I recommend that people go see The Gift because, as I said, it gives the appearance of a brilliant movie. The number of “boo” scenes that American movie makers have used to replace real horror are limited and the anxiety the movie creates is very thick. When this movie is done you will say, as I did, that this is a very good movie and you are glad you saw it.

Then you will go home and give the movie some thought and things will change. The Gift is about a former high school bully named Simon (played by Jason Bateman) who has become a successful sales professional and moves back near to his hometown with his wife Robyn (played by Rebecca Hall) to take on a great opportunity. As he and his wife are shopping for items for their new home, Simon meets up with one of his victims from high school named Gordo (played by Joel Edgerton) and Gordo tries to do the adult thing and bury the hatchet. Simon resists and, in the end, his stubborn and juvenile attitude winds up costing him dearly.

The movie weaves in and out of a stack of emotions that really draws the viewer in. The effective use of dramatic tension really puts the audience on pins and needles for the entire movie. But as the movie goes along, it becomes apparent that we have multiple villains in this movie and only one real victim. The movie wants us to feel like Simon got what was coming to him and Gordo got the proper revenge, but we really do not feel that way. Instead, we feel really sorry for Robyn, who winds up being used by both Simon and Gordo as a pawn in their game of revenge.

While the movie does not appear to mean it, there is a strong sense of objectifying women that made me pretty uncomfortable. You really do wind up pulling for Robyn towards the end of the movie, but that sensation of vindication is never achieved and the movie just…ends.

I was hesitant about Jason Bateman playing a serious and dramatic role, but he was brilliant. Joel Edgerton plays the bullied victim, and he also directed this movie. I will say that for a first crack at directing a full-length feature film, Edgerton did a fantastic job. The movie’s look and feel adjusts perfectly to fit the story and the movie is just dripping with emotion.

But I think that Edgerton needs to work more on his screenplay writing if he is going to find real commercial success in Hollywood. While the ending was effective, it also had elements that made it feel shallow. For example, Gordo gives Simon a video of Gordo possibly assaulting Robyn while she was unconscious as part of Gordo’s revenge. Well, if the assault was real, then the proof is in Simon’s hands. Simon is still a bully at the end and, since Gordo basically destroyed Simon’s life, it would be too easy for Simon to strike back by putting Gordo in jail for rape.

There are a few more factors in that ending I did not mention to avoid ruining the movie, but you will understand when you see it. It seems like Edgerton dotted his I’s in this movie, but he forgot to cross all of his T’s.

Despite the bad aftertaste this movie leaves, I still consider it a good movie and one that you should get out to see at the drive-in before it is replaced with something else. Jason Bateman’s performance alone is worth the price of a drive-in ticket which, as we all know, is not nearly as much as the cost of a hardtop theater ticket.

Rating: 2 out of 5

+George N Root III is a drive-in fanatic who encourages everyone to get out to the drive-in before the season winds down. Follow him on Twitter @georgenroot3 or send him an email at Follow the conversation about this movie and others at .)

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Sister Carol Ann Kleindinst holds a statue of St. 
Elizabeth Ann Seton, a gift of appreciation given 
to her years ago from the Faculty and Staff at DeSales.
Sister Carol Ann Kleindinst, SSMN has been newly named as principal at DeSales Catholic School, the school announced.

Prior to this formal appointment by the Board of Trustees, Kleindinst had been acting as the interim principal at DeSales.

Kleindinst has over 42 years of experience in education, 39 of those years have been in school administration. Most recently Kleindinst was employed at Mount Saint Mary's in Tonawanda where she taught English and served as Assistant Principal. Prior to her time at Mount Saint Mary’s Kleindinst was principal at DeSales from 1998-2007. She left the Catholic elementary and middle school in 2007 to care for a family member.

“Sister Carol Ann is an effective communicator, creative, purposeful, a great listener and very knowledgeable,” Kim Knuutila, Director of Admissions and Marketing at DeSales said of Kleindinst.

“She has a clear vision for the future of DeSales. Her high expectations and genuine caring for students, staff and families makes her the right person for the job. This is an exciting time to be part of DeSales.”

DeSales is a regional Catholic school educating students from Early Childhood through eighth grade. Located on Chestnut Ridge Road in Lockport, DeSales welcomes families of all faiths from throughout Eastern Niagara and Orleans counties.

For more information visit

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Sunday, August 30, 2015

Trevor James D’Angelo passed away August 28, 2015 in DeGraff Memorial Hospital.

Born in Buffalo on September 8, 1998. Trevor was the son of Peter and Karen (Mazur) D’Angelo. Trevor was a blessing to all who knew him. He possessed a simple yet profound strength of spirit that touched the lives of many. He has taught us all to value the simple things in life: the ability to taste, to touch, and to feel a soft caress or hand to hold. He loved music, especially the soothing comfort and beauty of his mother’s voice. He loved the sun on his face, visits to the lake, walks in his neighborhood, and community field trips with his school and classmates. His calm and gentle presence, his faultless patience and his fragile innocence will be desperately missed. We are forever changed by his presence in our lives.

Beside is parents, Trevor is survived by his brother, Brennan D’Angelo; his grandparents, Barbara and David Mazur of Lockport and Frances and Peter D’Angelo. He was the nephew of John Mazur, Johanna (John Wesley III, “Wes”) Ramsey and Mark (Sarah) D’Angelo; and cousins Mercedes Ramsey and John Wesley Ramsey IV.  Trevor is also survived by his home care nurses and aides known as “Team Trevor” and countless friends, family, and community members.

Friends may call Thursday September 3rd, 2-4 and 6-8 PM in Prudden and Kandt Funeral Home, 242 Genesee Street, Lockport. Funeral services will be held on Friday September 4th at 10 AM in First Presbyterian Church, 21 Church Street, Lockport. Interment will be in Cold Spring Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in honor of Trevor to be made to C.H.C. Learning Center, 1085 Eggert Road, Amherst, NY 14226.

Online condolences at


Roger Sherrie
Roger L. Sherrie, Democrat and endorsed Working Families Party candidate for Lockport mayor has picked up another key labor endorsement in his primary race with fellow Democrat Michael Pillot. Sherrie has received the backing of the Civil Service Employees Association, Western Region 6 who represents white-collar workers in the city.

Sherrie retired last December after a 28 year career with CSEA where he was primarily responsible for union staff that negotiate and administer contracts in over 200 Western New York cities, towns, villages and counties.

“I have said before, when political parties or labor unions make endorsements in primary elections, it’s important and it really means something,” said Sherrie, who has also been endorsed by the UAW Region 9 CAP Council and the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers, Local 2104 in the Democratic primary.

“Many would think it only natural that CSEA would back one of their former managers. But, you would be surprised how many active or retired union members running for office have failed to receive their endorsement.”

CSEA is one of New York’s leading unions with nearly 400 members registered to vote in Lockport.

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The National Weather Service calls for scattered rain before 11 a.m., followed by a chance of showers and thunderstorms this afternoon with a high near 83. Tonight looks to be partly cloudy with a low around 65.

Monday will be sunny with a high near 84 and a low around 65. Tuesday will also be sunny with a high near 85 and a low around 67. Wednesday: Mostly sunny with a high near 85 and a low around 67.

Thursday is expected to be mostly sunny with a high near 84 and a low around 65. Friday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 83 and a low around 64. Saturday: Mostly sunny with a high near 82.

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Let’s go on vacation, they said. It’ll be fun, they said …

In all fairness, it was my idea. And it was fun.

And exhausting. And expensive.

And fun.

When I was growing up, it seemed my amusement-park-loving family did a summer vacation every year. We don’t. It seems summers are so full of practices and commitments and expenses and everyday … life … that you blink and they’re gone.

But it’s been a rough year. We wanted to do something for the family. A very short vacation from normal life, even if it was just a weekend, seemed to fit the bill.

I looked into waterparks and amusement and campgrounds, and we eventually selected Canada’s Wonderland near Toronto, where I’d last set foot more than 12 years ago. (And before that, when I was, perhaps, 9.) The boys were thrilled.

And early one Saturday, we all piled in the car and set off for Canada.

Well, if this was like family vacations were like for my folks when I was a kid, I think I owe my parents an apology.

Family vacations are work.

We weren’t on the road half an hour when they were starving. Starving. Didn’t matter they’d only eaten breakfast an hour ago. STARVING.

We endured the pleas of the famished children until we got to the area near our hotel, where we sought a nearby fast food restaurant. Nope. Eventually, we located a Tim Hortons (of course) in a strip mall with a line out the door, endured the line for sustenance and carted our hard-won lunch back to the hotel, where we had to pick up our tickets.

Except that there was one guy with tickets. No one knew where he was.

I corralled two small and excited boys at a lobby table, where they fell on the food like a pack of starving (and messy) wolves. Ticket guy was, eventually, found. The parking pass we thought we’d receive as part of our package? Oh, it doesn’t apply to THAT package. Of course. Lovely. Still, we were here, right? We continued on to the park.

Twenty bucks poorer and a good 30 minutes later, we were inside, heavily laden with bags full of clothing changes and towels for our visit to the waterpark. Family photo! Nope. “Mom, the sun’s in my eyes!” “I want to go SWIMMING!”

The park was packed. The waterpark was more packed. I held grimly onto the boys and juggled bags while my husband waited for the computer to reserve a locker. (It’s all done by computers now. Who knew?) They whined. I juggled. He waited. Finally, we located our locker (another $25 poorer), jammed all the bags in with extreme force and headed for the water.

And it was good, if packed. (I laughed far harder than I should have when Jim forgot about the big bucket that dumps water at regular intervals and got dowsed.) But there was no place, really, to sit down and take a break, and eventually the shine wore off. Time to move on to the rides.

Sam badly wanted to go on the two non-waterpark rides that were water-based, so it seemed perfect for us to keep our waterpark clothes on for those. We left my husband and Jim at a table in a convenient central location and headed for the first line.

And waited. And waited. For a boy used to Fantasy Island and its much more manageable lines, it took forever. Finally, we piled into the log flame ride.

Which was, perhaps, three minutes long. “Mom, was that it?”

We returned to find Eric and Jim holding onto the table with the grim determination of a pair that’s figured out that, if they leave, there will be NOWHERE ELSE to sit down. I apologized for the wait, made plans to head for the second location (a rapids ride) and promised to return in the line looked huge.

It didn’t. Great! It was sort of along a winding path, though. Surely, the ride was just around that corner.

Or that one.

Or maybe that one.

The line was not short. The line was ridiculous. But after having been in there a certain amount of time, it seemed like giving up to bail out. We waited. We rode. (And it was fun.) We returned, shamefaced, to the two who had been holding the table.

The day continued. I won’t say we didn’t have fun – we did – but it was continually punctuated with “I’m hungry!” “I don’t want to wait that long.” “How much for a bottle of water?” “I gotta use the potty.”

I’ll say this: They were so exhausted that they fell asleep very, very quickly that night. We all managed a decent night’s sleep.

Then it was back again. (Another $20 poorer for parking, of course.)

“I’m hungry!” “I don’t want to wait that long.” “How much for a bottle of water?” “I gotta use the potty.”

I hate to see it, but I breathed a small sigh of relief when we finally piled back in the car, heading for home. I had literally walked the bottom off one sandal.

When we were leaving the park, exhausted and weary and just a little bit sunburnt (on my part), I heard a sigh from the backseat.

“Mom,” Sam said contentedly, “that was the best vacation ever.”

Funny how seven little words make it worth it.


The annual Buffalo Niagara Buddy Walk for the Family & Friends Down Syndrome Association of Niagara will take place as part of the Peach Festival parade Sept. 12, starting at 11 a.m. in the Village of Lewiston.

This will be my family’s eighth year walking in it.

If you see us, say hello!

+Jill Keppeler ... Follow her on Twitter @JillKeppeler or email her at

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Saturday, August 29, 2015

The fourth annual Teddy Bear Motorcycle Run for Children's Hospital will be held Sunday, Aug. 30.

The motorcycle run, which begins at noon from Attitude's Bar & Grill in Lockport, asks riders to donate one new stuffed animal, which will be given to Women & Children's Hospital in Buffalo.

Last year, over 100 stuffed animals were donated in the run. The group is hoping to break the 200-stuffed-animal threshold this year.

The run will leave Attitudes, stopping at Black North in Point Breeze and Time Out 2 in Olcott before returning to Attitudes around 3:30 p.m.

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Frank E. Kociolowicz, Sr. passed away August 28, 2015, in the VA Hospital of Buffalo.

Born in North Tonawanda, NY on April 3, 1957 he was the son of Edward and Sophie (Gurghol) Kociolowicz. Frank served in the US Marine Corp from 1975 to 1978 and worked briefly as a machinist. He enjoyed the Buffalo Bill and Sabres and motorcycles.

Frank is survived by his children Frank (Laura) Kociolowicz of Lockport and Marilyn Wojciechowski of Gasport; grandfather of Sophie, Thaddeaus, Clara Wojciechowski, Darren Kociolowicz, Kendra and Olivia Evans.

Relatives and friends may call Tuesday, September 1st from 4-7 PM funeral services will follow at 7 PM in Prudden & Kandt Funeral Home, 242 Genesee St., Lockport.


Richard H Beyer passed away August 29, 2015 in the Odd Fellow and Rebekah Rehab and Health Care Facility.  

Born June 3rd, 1926 in Niagara Falls, NY the son of Walter and Mary (Unterfinger) Beyer. Richard served in the US Army 1944 to 1946, as a Mess Cook at Ft. Dix, for consolidated mess, serving 3,000 men and women at one meal, for troops coming home from World War II. He worked in production for Harrison Radiator Division of G.M. for 32 years retiring in 1990, and also was the owner and operator of Beyer’s Drive-In Restaurant and K & M Cab, in Lockport. Richard was a member of the Cambria Congregational Church, the Wilson Masonic Lodge and was an avid hunter. He was predeceased by his wife Arlene Grady Beyer 1998.

Richard is survived by his dear friend Evelyn Reinhardt; sons Kenneth (Shirley) Beyer and Larry (Marlene) Beyer.  He also is survived by his grandchildren Jon (Sue), Tom (Christina), Marla, Lena and Lucas; great grandfather of Zach and Kenzie and was predeceased by his brothers Floyd, Charles, Roy and sisters Pearl Kolb, Esther and Dorothy Beyer.

Relatives and friends may call Monday August 31, 2015 in Prudden and Kandt Funeral Home, 242 Genesee Street, Lockport, NY from 11 to 1 PM, a funeral service will follow at 1 PM. Interment will be in North Ridge Cemetery.

Natalie Hambruch of Newfane, wife of Robert Hambruch entered into rest on Thursday August 27, 2015 at Roswell Park, Buffalo, NY.

She was born on April 28, 1926 in Cambria, NY. Daughter of the late Oscar and Euretta Mayer. Robert and Natalie were married for 67 years. She was a member of St. Brendan on the Lake and enjoyed cooking, baking, sewing, gardening and helping out at the Church. Her greatest joy came from spending time with family and being part of their lives.

Mother of David (Judy) Hambruch, Dennis (Kathy) Hambruch, John (Maureen) Hambruch and Joel (Ginny) Hambruch. Sister of Thomas (Audrey) Mayer and Vernly Antonich. Also survived by 8 grandchildren, 1 great grandchild and several nieces, nephews and late brothers and sisters.

Family and friends may call at the RUTLAND-CORWIN FUNERAL HOME, INC. 2670 Main St. Newfane, NY on MONDAY 2 – 4 and 7 – 9PM. A Mass of Christian burial will be held on TUESDAY 10AM at St. Brendan on the Lake (St. Bridget’s). Burial will be held in Hartland Central Cemetery. In lieu of flowers, please make a donation to Roswell Park Cancer Institute, PO Box 631 Buffalo, NY 14240.

Please visit to send the family a condolence.

Catherine Skutt of Gasport, NY formerly of Burt, NY wife of the late Kenneth L. Skutt entered into rest Thursday, August 27, 2015 in Buffalo General Hospital.

Catherine was born in Lockport NY, the daughter of the late John Flechsenhaar and Grace Houseman. She married Kenneth L. Skutt July 5, 1958 and he died January 28, 2011. She worked for Oldham Saw in Burt, NY as a machinist for many years. Member of the Lockport Moose Club and enjoyed cake decorating, crocheting, crafts, bingo and bird watching.

Mother of Pamela (Tim) Thomas of Clarence, Barbara (Fran) Ziolko of Springville, Kenneth Skutt Jr. of Olean, NY, Peggy (Mike) Zastrow of Wilson, Sandra (Jim) Baer of Lackawanna, Everett Skutt of Lockport and Tina Skutt of Niagara Falls, NY. Sister of the late Raymond Flechsenhaar. Also survived by 16 grandchildren, 30 great grandchildren and several nieces, nephews and 2 cousins.

A Celebration of Life will be held WEDNESDAY, September 2, 2015 at 2:00 PM in Lockport Moose Lodge 204 Monroe Street Lockport, NY.

Please visit to send a condolence to the family.

Barker Lions Past President Kevin Bittner and Newly installed President Fran Costello. (CONTRIBUTED PHOTO)


The Barker Lions will hold their first meeting of the year on Wednedsay, beginning with a field trip to Chaffee Dairy Farm at 6:30.

The trip will be followed by a 7:30 p.m. dinner at the Lions Community Building.

Lion President Fran Costello is excited about the new year. “Our members have as much enthusiasm as did the founding members 70 years ago. For our educational component, we’ll be having speakers from various organizations at our monthly meetings. We have many service projects, including the Halloween party for elementary school students we’ve held since our founding and working with the Barker Food Pantry especially around holiday time. Our lending closet has a variety of wheelchairs, walkers and other items to help those with challenges.”

In 1927, Lions International was asked to be Helen Keller’s Knights of the Blind. The Barker Lions continues this charge by providing glasses and hearing aids for those in our community who may not be able to afford them. They also support the Radio Reading Service and other local charities.

For more information about Barker Lions and its projects, check the website To become involved in a project  or to be our guest at a meeting, call 778-7001 or email

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The National Weather Service calls for mostly cloudy skies today with a high near 78 and a low around 62.

Sunday A slight chance of showers and thunderstorms after 2pm. Partly sunny, with a high near 81. Light and variable wind. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
Sunday NightPartly cloudy, with a low around 64. Southwest wind 5 to 7 mph.
Monday Sunny, with a high near 83. West wind 7 to 10 mph.
Monday NightMostly clear, with a low around 65.
Tuesday Sunny, with a high near 84.
Tuesday NightMostly clear, with a low around 66.
Wednesday Mostly sunny, with a high near 86.
Wednesday NightMostly clear, with a low around 66.
Thursday Mostly sunny, with a high near 85.
Thursday NightPartly cloudy, with a low around 66.
Friday Mostly sunny, with a high near 85.

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Friday, August 28, 2015

Rebecca Bouie Hunter peacefully enter into rest on August 27th, 2015.

Born May 29, 1937 in Quincy, FL to the late Hathaway and Rosa Lee Bouie; sister to six brothers and sisters Henry, Rosie, Beatrice and the late Hathaway, Ulysses, and Jessie-Mae. Loving wife to the late Eugene M. Hunter and mother to Curtis Hunter, Anthony Hunter, Ronald Hunter, Brenda Floyd, Florence (Leon) Johnson, and Diane (Ray) Robinson. Remembered by several nieces, nephews, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and great-great grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at the convenience of the family.


A window at a Locust Street business was broken sometime overnight. According to the owner of Sub Delicious, the window was damaged sometime between 1:08 a.m. and 9 a.m. by an unknown person. Damage to the window was estimated at $350, while a sign that was damaged will cost about $150 to replace.

Angelique D. Menchaca, 19, 5705 Oak Lane, was charged around 2:24 a.m. Thursday with DWI, speeding, underage possession of alcohol, and failure to keep right. According to the LPD report, Menchaca was stopped for traffic infractions and found to be intoxicated. She is due in City Court on Monday.

Robert A. Sears, 45, 409 Clinton St., was charged around 9:15 a.m. Wednesday with fourth-degree criminal mischief, second-degree harassment and obstruction of breathing. According to the LPD arrest report, Sears grabbed a city woman, threw her on the ground, struck her, and held her to the ground. He was due in City Court on Wednesday.

Shannon V. Hill, 30, 174 High St., Apt. A, was charged around 12:45 a.m. Wednesday with third-degree assault. According to the LPD report, Hill threw a cup of hot coffee on a woman, causing pain and redness, and threatened her. Hill is due in City Court on Monday.

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Mattie Mae Cole passed away August 28, 2015 under the care of Niagara Hospice.

Born in Peachlaud, NC she was the daughter of Millard and Minnie Horne. Mattie worked for Harrison radiator where she was a secretary prior to that she worked for the military intelligence office in Washington DC. Mattie was an active member of Emmanuel United Methodist Church and enjoyed sewing. She was predeceased by her husband Paul Cole in 1992, whom she met and married in Washington DC and also by her son James Cole in 2011.  Mattie is survived by her son Paul Cole of Lockport, her grandson James Cole, step-granddaughters Sarah and Amanda Cole and sister of Ellie Collins and the late Charles, Glenn, Millard, William, Jim, Louise, and Mary; also several nieces and nephews.

Relatives and friends may call Monday, Aug. 31st from 2-4 PM with the funeral service following at 4 PM in Prudden & Kandt Funeral Home, 242 Genesee St., Lockport. Interment will be in Glenwood Cemetery. Donations to Niagara Hospice, 4675 Sunset Dr., Lockport, NY 14094 would be appreciated.



NEWFANE — A 20-year-old Newfane man was charged with assault and child endangerment this morning by the Niagara County Sheriff's Office.

According to a press release sent by Sheriff Jim Voutour, Skylar R. Crisco was arrested after an investigation was conducted by the Niagara County Sheriff’s Office Criminal Investigation Bureau.

Crisco was charged with second-degree assault, first-degree reckless endangerment, and endangering the welfare of a child.

Voutour was not available at the time of publication to elaborate on Crisco's charges.

Crisco was arraigned in front of the Justice Barnes and Newfane Town Court before having bail set at $20,000 cash or $40,000 property. A return court date was set for Tuesday.

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SOMERSET — A Lake Road woman told Niagara County Sheriff's deputies on Thursday morning that someone had broken the glass on her front window overnight.

The woman said she heard what sounded like four gunshots from the road around 1:40 a.m. but did not see any vehicles in the area. When she checked the front of the house, she saw a hole in her front window.

The entire window will need to be replaced.

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A group of volunteers from Yahoo! will serve as lock tenders on Saturday.
A volunteer team of lock tenders from Yahoo! will operate the restored Flight of Five Locks between 10 a.m. and noon on Saturday.

The manually operated lock gates , installed on enlarged Erie Canal Locks 69 and 70 as the Phase I project for the restoration of the Erie Canal Flight of Five Locks, will be worked by a team of the six volunteers, lead by David Chatt.

They will open valves to fill the 19th century engineering marvel with water, manually opening the five-ton wooden lock gates using wooden balance beams, and emptying the water from Lake Erie into the canal basin below. The Yahoo! team leader will be David Chatt.

Simultaneously, one lock tender operates the mechanized Erie Barge Canal Locks 34 and 35 adjacent to the Flight of Five for canal recreational boaters and sightseers.

The locks demonstrations and Community Market operate every Saturday through the end of September.

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The National Weather Service calls for sunny skies with a high near 75 today. Overnight will be mostly clear with a low near 57.

Saturday looks to be partly sunny with a high near 80 and a low around 64. Sunday, there' s chance of showers, with thunderstorms also possible after 11 a.m. and a high near 82. There's a chance of showers and thunderstorms at night with a low around 65. Monday will be mostly sunny with a high near 82 and a low around 65.

Tuesday will also be mostly sunny with a high near 84 and a low around 65. Wednesday: Mostly sunny with a high near 86 and a low around 65. Thursday will be mostly sunny with a high near 85.

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This past weekend was a long one. I took a trip to Syracuse again for the weekend, and did a lot of new things. Some from the list some just because. A new restaurant which was absolutely delicious was Alto Cinco, located at: 526 Westcott Street in Syracuse. It was a really nice dinner. I highly recommend the chicken nachos. The art on the walls as well as throughout the establishment was very enticing. The bathroom mirror was almost made entirely out of wine corks, which had me working out a DIY in my head.

On Saturday, I went with my friends, Caroline Dowd, and Andrew Randazzo, for Conservation Day at Clark Reservation State Park to remove invasive (not evasive) species from the area with a pretty large group of people. The species we removed was called Pale Swallow Wort and it is currently threatening the area’s native plants and animals. One plant for example that it is hindering is called the American hart’s-tongue fern. Another thing mentioned during our volunteer work was the Monarch butterfly.

The event was run by one of my best friends, Andrew, who is attending ESF, A SUNY College also in Syracuse for Environmental Science and Forestry. Andrew recently just came back from studying abroad in Brazil where he had a remarkable time. I am very proud to have him in my life.

Another café to check off the list was called Recess Coffee, located at:  110 Harvard Place, Syracuse. We passed it the night before when we were walking to Alto Cinco, and I just had to go in the next day after we left the Clark State Park. As we were walking in Andrew tells me that you can bring in your own coffee mug to reduce the need for extra coffee cups in the garbage. Is this a thing at all cafes? I had never heard of it, but welcomed it. It was nice.

Over time as I watch other people, take their own initiative to save the earth I just feel a huge smile inside and out. It doesn’t take a lot, just a little substitution and conscious initiative. Andrew is actually the person that started me caring a little more, bit by bit. I lived with him for a bit many years ago, and I thought the amount that he recycled, and the energy spent on a compost pile was a lot. Eventually, I fell into rhythm with the change, and let myself open myself to the possibility that I could make a difference. I still don’t have a compost pile but I do have a system for recycling that I am proud of.

Another place we checked out Saturday night was called Texas de Brazil. We stopped at the bar while walking by in the Destiny USA Mall. This mall is by far the biggest mall I have ever step foot inside. It is a six story shopping mall, and the largest mall in New York, as well as the sixth largest in the United States.

Andrew says that you enter that mall and lose all track of time. At no point while we were there did I ever know where I was. I would have been literally lost without him…minus the searching that whole mall for what is called a muddler? And pretty much no store carries this (utensil?) Thank you Burlington (this is where he found it), for being right across from 99 Cent City (one of my favorite stores ever.)

We started Sunday off by checking out Funk N Waffles, also located in Syracuse at 727 S Crouse Avenue, #8. Even now as I think back, I am still unsure how I felt about this café. I am labeling this place a café because it was mostly coffee and waffles with music, and it was small like a café. Process of illumination says I would just count it for the purposes of my list as a café. When you walk in to order, you have a choice of Sweet or Savory waffles. The only way that I know how to explain this is to say that sweet is more of an original or normal kind of waffle, and savory is a whole meal baked into the waffle. Sweet is mostly whipped creams, and sugars, and fruits; whilst savory have turkey, chicken or a meat baked inside it with spinach or Gouda cheese, etc… It was really very interesting. So new that my actual stomach and taste buds were very confused on whether we as a whole being liked it. I think I will have to return again to try it again…I still have mixed feelings. Great smoothie though.

The last thing here is that I had to add something to my list, “Try Kava Bar.” This is something I had never heard of before, but had I; I would have most definitely wanted to try it.

Caroline and I ended our trip with Andrew in Ithaca. Ithaca was so pretty. I had never been there before. We took this extra trip inside a trip to visit Mystic Water Kava Bar. Kava is a root plant from the Pacific, and is mainly consumed in cultures like Polynesia, Hawaii, etc… It has tranquilizing and anesthetic elements. We were the only ones in the place when we initially walked in, and it was a very relaxing atmosphere. They have a yoga studio that is conjoining, but it was under construction. This however did not stop me from going in to check it out.

We picked our table and sat down and the server came up to talk to us. We had mostly the kinds of questions he would get every day. What is it? How do you drink it? Is it like THC? He said it definitely was not like THC, and is most defiantly legal. There is no paranoia or high associated; merely immense relaxation. He explained that since we were all beginners that we should do about five shots each to feel the effects. We agreed to get a turtle. I thought it was just a name but he literally brought us a wooden turtle with a muddy colored liquid, and four cups which were all halves to a coconut shell cut and sanded down to make a cup. He tells us that to do this, if we wanted to do it the way they would in the original culture, we had to do what he said.

The person in the center is the server. He (Andrew) takes one cup and fills the rest of the cup up halfway with this kava liquid. We all clap twice softly, say “Boolah,” take the shot of kava, put the coconut shell down and clap again. Repeat four more times. After the first shot our original server went back to his counter and grabbed warm water and pineapple cut up into pieces. The actual taste of the Kava is not great so the pineapple was a perfect taste to go with Kava.

Around shots two or three we wondered if this was just a huge joke and we were actually drinking mud water while our original server was actually laughing with the owner in the back that we were falling for it, but a couple minutes after shot 3 we all mutually decided it was not a placebo effect.

It was a very slow effect at first, and when  we finally felt it, we knew it. Imagine standing on a hill of grass, no care in the world, with your favorite songs playing, and dancing away to the beats while feeling like your so Zen. It was like that. You just wanted to dance and BE. I did find myself dancing while I waited for Andy to bring back more pineapple. There was a raised wooden platform with pillows and curtains that was calling my name in the Yoga Studio, but I still didn’t know if I was allowed in. I eventually made my way in and laid down to feel the effects and just take it in to think about it seriously. What do I really feel? Do I like it? I let myself feel how it wanted me to, and all of the sudden all I wanted to do was meditate. I have never wanted to meditate before because my brain is like a pinball game, a mile a minute, with thoughts. Kava shut that down, and made me want to just sit and be silent and meditate. I would definitely try this again when I have nowhere to be so soon, and can try to really play out the effects, and feelings. It was nice to feel so relaxed and in the moment silent.

What a great weekend.

+Jessica Cassick  thinks there should be a Kava Bar way closer to Lockport *cough, cough*

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Thursday, August 27, 2015
From left, Pat McCabe, Kim Mansfield, Ann Hood, and Toby Mansfield pose with a check from Cornerstone CFCU to Lockport CARES. Cornerstone donated $2,200 to two organizations following a summer fundraising drive. (CONTRIBUTED PHOTOS)


A pair of Lockport organizations got a boost thanks to Cornerstone CFCU's second annual "Causal for a Cause" summer fundraising drive.

This year, participating employees made a donation and nominated a charity for the opportunity to wear jeans on Fridays during the summer. With majority of the staff participating, $2,200 was raised with the money split between Lockport CARES and the Sister Mary Loretto Soup Kitchen.

Lockport CARES was nominated by employees Ann Hood and Pat McCabe. Lockport CARES operates an emergency homeless shelter serving the needs of greater Niagara County as well as a separate transitional housing and recovery program for men (Kahler House). To donate or learn more about this organization visit

Nancy Baes of Cornerstone, left, hands a check to Major Jose Santiago of
The Lockport Salvation Army. 
Employees Nancy Baes and Mary Scheib nominated the Sister Mary Loretto Soup Kitchen, which is run out of the Lockport Salvation Army.

According to Major Jose Santiago of the Salvation Army, the soup kitchen serves 110-120 meals each week day and 100% of the money donated to soup kitchen goes to providing meals. That’s about 30,000 meals a year to the less fortunate of our community. For more information, call the Lockport Salvation Army at 434-1276 or visit

Established in 1957 as Unit No. 1 Federal Credit Union, Cornerstone CFCU is a community chartered, federally insured credit union. Cornerstone has grown to become the largest credit union based in Western New York with more than 47,000 members and assets in excess of $365 million. Those who live, work, volunteer, attend school or worship within Niagara County are eligible for membership under Cornerstone’s charter.  For additional information, call 434.2290 or visit

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Roger Sherrie
Democratic mayoral candidate Roger Sherrie expressed his frustration Wednesday with the fact that he and fellow Democrat Mike Pillot will not hold any debates leading up to the Sept. 11 Democratic Primary.

Sherrie, who is also the endorsed Working Families Party candidate, issued a press release on the matter saying that people he's spoken to on the campaign trail have asked him if there would be debates between him and Pillot.

Pillot, on the other hand, said he's heard no such clamor. "Not one person asked me about a debate. Not one," Pillot said today by phone.

Pillot, who has run for mayor twice prior, said he held a meet-and-greet for voters who wanted to learn more about him. "Why do I have to debate with him? I don't have to answer to Sherrie," he said. "If I'm elected, I'm going to be working for the taxpayers."

For his part, Sherrie said he was hoping to capitalize on the “the enthusiastic interest shown by democratic voters during the petitioning process.”

Sherrie's press release follows in its entirety:
Roger L. Sherrie, Democrat and endorsed Working Families candidate for Lockport Mayor, today issued a press release stating that debates he proposed having with his primary opponent Mike Pillot will regrettably not take place. He had proposed a series of debates early in the campaign to capitalize on what he said was “the enthusiastic interest shown by democratic voters during the petitioning process."

Sherrie said he’s had so many voters ask him about the debates he felt it best to make a public Sherrie said he has been informed by City Democratic Chair Ed Tracy that Pillot has failed to respond to several emails he sent regarding preliminary plans for a debate. He said Tracy had approached him with the outline of a debate including names of a moderator and panelists. “There were still details to be worked out but nothing I heard in Tracy’s plan was a deal breaker for me.”

Initially, Pillot responded publicly that he was in favor of a debate provided nothing was “put up” and “audience members get to ask questions.” Sherrie said, “As I understand Tracy’s plan, it was to have a panel of local reporters ask questions along with taking some from the audience. It seems to me this format would have given the public a very informative program.”

Sherrie couldn’t say whether he thought there was still time to arrange for a debate should Pillot decide to participate. “The voters are the real losers here and that’s unfortunate.”

Sherrie will face Pillot in a September 10th Democratic Primary. This is the third time Pillot is running for mayor after losing elections to Mike Tucker in 2007 and 2011. Sherrie has received the backing of the Working Families Party and some major unions including the UAW, CSEA and IBEW Local 2104.

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The 2015 Kenan Speaker Series will present Lauren Winner, author of "Girl Meets God," on Sept. 26.

Only 150 seats are available for the 3 p.m. event. Tickets are available at the Kenan Center Box Office. Cost is $10 general admission or $5 for students with ID.

A reception in the Kenan House will follow at 5 p.m., where a limited number of Winner’s books will be for sale.

Additionally, Winner will preach the sermon at the First Presbyterian Church on Sept. 27 at 10:30 a.m., with a coffee hour reception will follow.

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A pig roast and basket raffle to benefit Camp Happiness will be held from 3-7 p.m. Sept. 19 at the Lockport Elks Lodge, 6791 N. Canal Road.

Aside from tasty pork and the basket raffles, the event will include 50/50 raffles on the hour and music by M Sound. The basket raffle will be held at 6 p.m. Attendance is not required to win.

Tickets are $15 each or $25 for a pair and can be purchased at the Lockport Elks Lodge or Howell Motors Ford.

Donations of baskets, items and gift cards are being accepted by Judy Brounscheidel at 795-3807.

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The National Weather Service calls for partly sunny skies today with a high near 71 and a low around 53.

Friday looks to be sunny with a high near 77 and a low around 59. Saturday, there's a slight chance of showers with a high near 83 and a low around 64. Sunday offers a chance of showers with a low around 65.

Monday will be mostly sunny with a high near 82 and a low around 64. Tuesday will also be mostly sunny with a high near 84 and a low around 65. Wednesday: Mostly sunny with a high near 85.

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One of the more unusual-looking wildflowers of the Niagara Frontier is the common teasel. It is instantly recognizable and it may be a plant that is often overlooked due to its abundance.

It can be found in great numbers in fields, pastures, ditches and waste areas, where it towers over other plants, shooting 2 to 8 feet into the air. You’ll recognize it by the tall, skinny stem that is prickly, which supports an equally prickly cone-like head. That head holds dozens of densely-packed purple flowers, less than a quarter inch in length, that grow in bands, most often horizontally but sometimes vertically.

A very crafty plant 

Teasels may be prickly, but they're also useful. 
Teasel dries up in the early winter and dried plants can stand for well over a year. The interesting appearance and its dry but not brittle state makes the plant a favorite for florists and homeowners, who like to use the heads and stems to dress up centerpieces. A cursory search on craft-related websites like Pintrest and Etsy will find many flower-setting and craft projects involving teasel heads. Some folks go as far to spray paint them various colors to augment their vases while other souls have made small tabletop Christmas trees out of them, which I must say are rather cute.  

A useful tool for the clothing industry 

The teasel is an invasive species, originally brought here from Europe for industrial purposes. Wool manufacturers attached the dried flower heads to spindles and used them to tease (hence the name) the wool. The spiny teasel heads would grab the wool without tearing it, raising the nap and making the wool (which is initially rough) softer and more comfortable.

Although an invasive species, it does not pose too much of a problem. In a normal agricultural setting it is easily removed by standard plowing because its taproots don’t go very deep into the ground. If they overtake a garden, it takes no effort to pull them out of the ground (just wear gloves because the spines can hurt a little).

Strange medicinal uses for teasels 

If you look at the head of a flowering teasel closely you will see little grubs living in it. Back in Elizabethan times, people actually believed that the grubs warded off a malaria-like fever, so people overcome with fever would fashion a necklace out of the grubs and wear it until the fever subsisted.

As if that’s not weird enough, folks once thought that the water that pools up in the cups where the leaves meet the stems was a useful beauty aid. They would wash their face with it to get rid of tired eyes or dump it on their hands to get rid of warts.

Niagara County’s only carnivorous plant 

When one thinks of carnivorous plants, Venus flytraps and pitcher plants come to mind. We have neither of those here in Niagara County and, until only recently, it was believed we didn’t have any carnivorous plants in the region.

We now know that the teasel is somewhat carnivorous. It was an idea kicked around, but never proved, in 1877 by Francis Darwin, the son of Charles Darwin, who shared his father’s keen natural intellect. He noticed insects had always collected in the pooled water at the terminal end of the leaves and he wondered if that was by design and not by accident.

No one had really pursued the concept until a study that was released by two Rhoehampton University professors in 2011. They found that teasels that held dead insects ingested the cadavers. That act didn’t improve overall biomass (as a pitcher plant’s habits would) but it increased seed biomass and seed output, making for a more productive plant.

The next time you see this weed, take a moment to appreciate it – like all plants on the Niagara Frontier, it has an interesting story to tell.

+Bob Confer lives in rural Gasport where he’s thinking of getting crafty and making a teasel Christmas tree. Follow him on Twitter @bobconfer or email him at

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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Lockport's Main Street will host the "Flight of Five Mile" at 7 p.m. on Sept. 17.

The Flight of Five Mile is the final race in a six-race series of 1-mile events held around Western New York.

The race will start on West Main Street in front of Chet's Doghouse. Runners will proceed up Main Street to the turnaround located after the median in front of the First Niagara Bank. They will then return down Main Street, running past the brand new Mural on Main before finishing on the Big Bridge in front of City Hall. A portion of the proceeds of this event with benefit the mural project.

The event will be separated into three separate races. The 1-mile open race begins at 7 p.m., followed by the elite women (sub 6:00 pace) at 7:30 p.m., and the elite men (sub 5:00 pace) at 8 p.m..

A post-race celebration and awards ceremony for the race and the mile series will take place at Lock 34 following the final race.

The entry fee is $20. Complete race and registration information can be found at

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Joe O’Shaughnessy, Democrat and endorsed Working Families Party candidate for alderman-at-large in Lockport has picked up the endorsement from the United Auto Workers Region 9 CAP Council for the November election, his campaign announced today.

O’Shaughnessy thanked the UAW for their support and confidence in his candidacy. “We need fresh leadership that will unify the community, our city employees and get down to the business of solving our problems,” he said.

O’Shaughnessy, a lifelong member of the Lockport community, and former Lockport City School District trustee, is facing incumbent Republican Joe Kibler for the at-large post.

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NEWFANE — Two dogs made a getaway and no humans were harmed Tuesday night in a fire on Jockey Road.

According to the Niagara County Sheriff's Office, when patrol arrived at the scene of the blaze, 6288 Jockey Road, "the residence had black smoke and flames coming from the second floor on the south side of the residence."

Miller Hose Fire Dept. arrived on scene, led by Chief Gary Snyder, shortly after patrol and extinguished the fire. Olcott Fire Dept. also responded.

A quick-thinking citizen told patrol that no one was home at the time aside from two dogs, which he had let out of the house prior to patrol's arrival.

"There were no people in the residence at the time of the fire, and both dogs were unharmed," according to the report.

The Niagara County Origin and Cause Unit responded and stated nothing appeared to be suspicious at this time. The Red Cross was notified to assist the family, and the value lost in the fire is unknown at report time.

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Teddy the pug is "OK," but donations are needed to 
help pay for his care. (CONTRIBUTED PHOTO)
The Buffalo Pug and Small Breed Rescue, Inc. says that lab results from "Teddy" the pug's veterinarian's visit have returned, showing that his kidneys and liver are "OK," but other problems persist and help is needed.

"Concerning is his (white blood cell count) which is over 51,000, indicating he has a pretty bad infection," the group said on its Facebook page. "Also, his Globulin was significantly elevated which could indicate a few things: early kidney failure, multiple myeloma or possibly just from the infection. There were a few other things slightly off as well but that's what concerned him right now."

His labs will be sent off to an internist to get a second opinion and then be redrawn Monday to see if the medications, nutrition and hydration have helped. In the meantime, the dog has been started on pain medication.

Teddy is eating and drinking normally now, "and was barking in his crate bright and early to go outside."

The group is taking monetary donations at or directly to the Millersport Small Animal Clinic at 688-9424. They have also started a wish list for him, including canned food, t-shirts and blankets.

Teddy had been left in a garbage bag at the side of Mountain and Bolton road in Royalton on Sunday. He was found by a family and later turned over to Buffalo Pug and Small Breed Rescue, Inc.


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TOWN OF LOCKPORT — A man was charged by the Niagara County Sheriff's Office on Monday with helping another male steal items from Walmart.

According to the NCSO report, Joseph Thompson arrived in a blue Chevrolet with another male around 6:12 p.m. The pair walked around the store putting items in a shopping cart. Thompson then allegedly stood in front of the other male while the other man put the items from the cart into a Walmart bag.

"After everything was bagged the unknown male pushed the cart with merchandise in it past all points of purchase," the report said. Walmart's security chief stopped the male, who then fled without the cart, getting back into the blue Chevy and leaving.

Walmart security then saw Thompson in the parking lot and pointed him out to patrol. Thompson denied any involvement and said he had walked to the the store. However, "patrol observed Thompson getting out of the suspect vehicle on the Walmart security video."

Thompson was charged with sixth-degree conspiracy and taken to Niagara County Jail  on $250 bail. He is to appear in Town of Lockport Court on Thursday.

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