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Boston Town Board reacts to recent shoot-out

BOSTON — When the Boston Town Board convened on March 19, its members provided updates and shared insight regarding an emergency situation that recently occurred just outside the town limits.

On the evening of March 17, Mathew Eck, a resident of Brown Hill Road, was involved in a standoff, including gunfire with police, that began at approximately 9 p.m. and lasted for nearly 12 hours. Eck is now in custody.

“We had an extremely serious situation,” Councilman Jeff Genzel said. “At first, we thought it was in town, and then later on we found out it was actually in the town of Concord.

“Our emergency services in this town, as Councilman [Jay] Boardway has always said, are second to none,” Genzel continued. “Thank you to the Boston Fire Company, who opened up their doors to have a command center at their hall, their new hall down there on Mill Street.”

Genzel extended thanks to the North Boston Fire Company fire police, for blocking off the roads. “Of course, our Patchin Fire Company was on call to back up our other two companies,” he said. “Also our Boston Emergency Squad was on duty, throughout the night, with ambulances waiting, if they were in need. Our emergency services pull together and work as a team, when you have the Erie County sheriff, the state troopers [and] the FBI. We’re just all thankful that no one got hurt and the suspect is in the appropriate hands to face the charges. Thank you to all our emergency services for being there and protecting our citizens.”

Supervisor Martin Ballowe said that he appreciated the communication that went on between responding parties. “I had the opportunity to meet with Councilman Genzel and discuss having a meeting with our fire companies and emergency management in town [regarding] what we can do better [and] how we can be better prepared for things like this,” he said.

Last year, the town looked into a “red alert” system that would notify participating citizens of emergency situations via telephone. The cost of the system has kept the board from utilizing it, to date.

“The red alert system that [we] investigated last year with Hamburg dispatch is something that would sort of fit into that kind of thing for a very specific area of people that could have been affected would have been notified,” Boardway said. “The cost was prohibitive for us at that time, to involve ourselves in that system.”

“It’s an unfortunate thing that happened on the outskirts of our town,” Ballowe concluded, “but we’ve been in contact and we’ve been discussing this, and I’ve been discussing this with Councilman Genzel and our emergency management, too, to move forward.”

Genzel said that any inquiries regarding responses to emergency situations can be directed to members of the town board.

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