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Police blotter for The Sun week of July 10

Traffic stop reveals cannabis

On June 4 at 12:47 p.m., town of Hamburg Police officers Widman, Rickard-Puleo, and Walsch were traveling on Southwestern Boulevard and reported a blue Audi following the officers’ vehicle at an unsafe distance. The vehicle passed the unmarked squad car on the right and unsafely moved back into the passing lane, almost striking the officers’ vehicle, before accelerating to almost 100 mph.

The vehicle was stopped near North Creek, when Cameron Harter, 21, of Hamburg, said he was in a hurry to get to a friend’s house. He appeared nervous and was shaking. Richard-Puleo asked if he had anything illegal in the vehicle; Harter said there was hash in his left front pocket. He said that patrol could look through the vehicle, and was asked to step out of the car.

Harter gave Richard-Puleo a small, rubber-like ball with concentrated cannabis inside. During the search, a “flashlight” stun gun was located in the armrest of the back seat.

Both the cannabis and the sun stun gun were confiscated and Harter was issued tickets, returnable at a later date.

Harassment charge from hair-pulling

Erie County Sheriff’s deputies Brendan Connolly and Jason Breinlinger responded to a complaint on June 16, from a Collins resident, that, while she was walking down the road, another female pulled her hair and hit her in the back of the head.

Deputies arrested Tiffany Kehr, 27, of Collins, and charged her with a violation of harassment in the second degree. Kehr was issued an appearance ticket, returnable to Collins Town Court, at a later date.

Shoplifting at Wegmans

The town of Hamburg Police Department arrested April Ludlow, 24, of the town of Hamburg, for petit larceny.

On July 5, Ludlow was placed in custody at Wegmans security office for attempting to shoplift. The items included baby formula, makeup and earrings.

She was observed by a loss prevention agent.

Ludlow was taken to the station for processing and posted $100 bail. She was released on an appearance ticket to appear in Hamburg court on July 10.

Ludlow also had a bench warrant from the city of Buffalo and was turned over at the station to the Buffalo Police Department.

Blood test proves DWI

The town of Hamburg Police Department arrested Daryl Smith, 43, of Orchard Park, for driving while intoxicated.

On July 3, Officer Eagan responded to a report of an injury automobile accident. Upon arrival, he observed Smith with a bleeding left wrist and detected an odor of an alcoholic beverage. Smith also displayed slurred speech, poor motor coordination and had glassy eyes. When asked, Smith stated he had drank four-five beers earlier while golfing. After refusing to perform field sobriety tests and to consent to an alco-sensor test, Smith was placed under arrest.

Smith was read his DWI and Miranda Warnings. He did not say whether he would consent to a chemical test. Smith was transported to Erie County Medical Center as a precautionary measure because his head hit the windshield during the accident. Smith had not been wearing a seatbelt.

At the hospital, Smith requested to speak with a lawyer before consenting to having his blood drawn. Neither Smith or his mother, Marilyn Smith, 68, of Orchard Park, could successfully contact a lawyer. Smith requested that his mother be present while he had his blood drawn. The blood showed he was intoxicated while driving.

Smith issued summons for not having a seat belt fastened, refusing to take a breath test and driving while intoxicated. He is to appear in town court on July 7.

Smith was released to his mother on summons at the hospital as he forgoes further testing.

Berndt arrested for DWI

The Erie County Sheriff’s Office arrested Michael Berndt, 33, of the town of Collins, on July 4.

Sherrif’s dispatchers received a call from the Seneca Nation Marshalls, because Berndt was thought to be driving while intoxicated. Upon further investigation, Berndt failed sobriety tests and volunteered to do a breathing test. His breath registered as a .22 percent BAC, nearly three times the legal limit for intoxication. A computer check on Berndt’s license showed he had previous conviction or DWI, elevating his arrest to a felony. Berndt was also charged with having an open container in his vehicle.

Berndt was released to a third party on traffic summonses, and will answer to the charges on a future date in the Town of Brandt court. His vehicle was towed and a 12-hour hold was placed on it.


On July 3, the town of Hamburg Police Department arrested William McAuley, 47, of Evans, for driving while intoxicated.

Lieutenant Ugale had observed McAuley’s car crossing over the double yellow center line several times, unable to stay in his own lane. After stopping the vehicle, Lieutenant Ugale noticed an odor of an alchoholic beverage coming from McAuley’s breath, glassy eyes and slurred speech. McAuley had difficulty providing his driver’s license.

McAuley refused to take an alcosensor test and failed two sobriety tests. McAuley was placed under arrest for driving while intoxicated and stated he would not submit to a chemical test. At the station, he refused a chemical test again.

A license check showed that McAuley’s license has been suspended for prior DWI related offenses, including a DWI conviction in 2009. As a result, both the DWI and aggravated license operation are considered felonies.

McAuley was charged with DWI, AUG, refusal to take a breath test, moving from lane unsafely and operating a vehicle without a license. The vehicle was impounded and McAuley was released to his girlfriend to return on July 7 for booking and arraignment. His license was confiscated and a driver review request was completed.

Boston man DWI

On July 5 at approximately 1 a.m., Joshua Griffith, 33, of West Valley, was arrested for driving while intoxicated.

Deputy Walczak stopped Griffith’s vehicle due to erratic driving. Upon further interview and field sobriety tests, Griffith was found to be intoxicated. His chemical breath test resulted in a .11 percent BAC.

Griffith was arrested and charged with driving while intoxicated and other traffic infractions. His vehicle was towed from the scene.

Later, Griffith was released to a third party on appearance tickets to the Town of Boston court at a later date.

His arrest was the 127th DWI arrest made by the Erie County Sheriff’s Office this year.

Traffic violations, possession arrest

On July 5, the town of Hamburg Police Department arrested Bryana Sparks, 17, Orchard Park, for unlawful possession of marijuana.

As Officer Cross and Officer Jendrowski were responding to an alarm, they observed a vehicle swerving, crossing the double yellow line several times and drifting into the lane without signaling. As the patrol car passed the vehicle, it almost side swiped the car. Officer Cross conducted a traffic stop due to the traffic violations.

Upon approaching the car, they smelled a strong odor of burned and unburned marijuana. This was a probable cause to search the vehicle. The marijuana was found in a plastic bag in the center console in between the driver and front passenger seats.

Sparks, one of the passengers in the car, claimed the marijuana was hers. She was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana and was released on an appearance ticket to appear in court on July 18. The minor was picked up by a parent.

Robert Myles, 19, of Blasdell, was driving the vehicle and was charged with the traffic violations. His charges are to be answered on July 21.

Attempted theft at Wal-Mart

The town of Hamburg police department arrested Rebekka Ziolkowski, 36, of Buffalo and Paul Nowak, 38, of Buffalo for larceny.

On June 29, police responded to a report of larceny suspects made by Marjorie Sanders, 46, of the town of Hamburg.

Ziolkowski and Nowak reported to have taken a lawn mower, weed trimmer and leaf blower from Wal-Mart and placed them in a cart. Ziolkowski exited the store and waited in a black Toyota outside. Nowak passed all points of purchase with the merchandise, making no attempt to pay for the items.

Sanders then engaged Nowak and took possession of the cart without incident. Nowak fled on foot to the car.

The police located said vehicle and initiated a traffic stop. Both subjects were placed under arrest and later identified by Sanders. Ziolkowski and Nowak were issued Notifications of Restriction from Property on July 2 and subsequently charged with trespassing and burglary. A felony file was completed.

Woman bites friend

On July 2, the town of Hamburg Police Department arrested Ashley Duggan, 22, of Orchard Park for assault in the third degree.

Victim Michael Roberts, 26, of the town of Hamburg, had been driving his friend Duggan home from a night of fishing and drinking. A disagreement arose which culminated in Duggan biting Roberts in the arm, causing a visible bite mark and redness.

Roberts did not wish to prosecute, but did not wish to continue transporting Duggan home. The police arrived to find Duggan highly intoxicated and had to be instructed numerous times to refrain from walking into traffic on Lake View Road.

While investigating the incident and trying to arrange Duggan’s safe transport home, she became verbally irate and continuously yelled profanity. Duggan refused to stay out of the roadway.

Duggan was placed under arrest for disorderly conduct and was taken to the police station where she was processed and released. Duggan was issued an appearance ticket for disorderly conduct to appear in Hamburg Town court on July 7.

Hit and run

The town of Hamburg police department arrested Daniel Dechent, 31, of Lackawanna, July 6 for a hit and run accident.

Danielle C. Levesque, 39, of Cheektowaga, was found by the police in front of Bases Loaded with a damaged rear bumper. Levesque stated that she was stopped on Lakeshore Road at a red light. When the light turned green, she proceeded forward and was rear-ended before she could clear the intersection. Dechent failed to stop and report the accident. Levesque stated she had some pain in her back from the collision and was transported to the Mercy Ambulatory Care Center by the metro.

The collision had left an impression of Dechent’s license plate on Levesque’s rear bumper. Dechent was contacted and admitted to having been involved in the accident and leaving the scene. He was issued a summons for following too closely and leaving the scene of an injury accident. Dechent is to return to the Hamburg Town Court on July 21 to answer the summonses.

Registration open for Frontier classes

The Frontier Central Community Education’s summer classes, for adults and children opened July 1. Brochures are currently available at local libraries and at the Community Education Office’s new location in the Frontier Education Center, located at 5120 Orchard Ave. in Hamburg.

Registration hours will be from 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Monday through Thursday and from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. on Fridays.The brochure and registration is also available online at

For more information, call 926-1744.

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