Displaying items by tag: saratoga

Thursday, 15 August 2019 14:38

August 16 – August 22, 2019

COURT 

Timothy D. Febbie, 50, of Ballston Spa, pleaded Aug. 7 to aggravated family offense, a felony, in Milton. Sentencing Oct. 9. 

Samuel Heroux, 22, of Ballston Lake, was sentenced Aug. 8 to 6 months in jail and 5 years of probation, after pleading to criminally negligent homicide, regarding an incident in Clifton Park that took place in Aug. 2017. 

Isaiah Depiazza, 19, of Clifton Park, was sentenced Aug. 8 to 1 to 3 years in state prison, after pleading to criminally negligent homicide, regarding an incident in Clifton Park that took place in Aug. 2017. 

Maximilian J. Bruno, 27, of Ballston Spa, pleaded Aug. 8 to felony burglary, in Milton. Sentencing Oct. 10. 

Maverick J. Bush, 31, of Ballston Spa, pleaded Aug. 9 to attempted burglary in the second-degree, a felony. Sentencing Oct. 10. 

Melissa S. Goodhue, 35, of Milton, pleaded Aug. 8 to felony grand larceny. Sentencing Oct. 10. 

Sean M. Halper, 30, of Oxford, Alabama, pleaded Aug. 8 to attempted criminal sale of a controlled substance, a felony. Sentencing Oct. 11. 

Nestor L. Baez, 32, of Cohoes, was sentenced to 3 years prison and 2 years post-release supervision, regarding a charge of criminal possession of a controlled substance, in Saratoga Springs. 

Adam J. Rouse, 34, of Hudson Falls, pleaded Aug. 9 to felony identity theft, in Wilton. Sentencing Sept. 27. 

POLICE

Shaun Beagle, 36, of Gansevoort, was charged Aug. 6 in Saratoga Springs with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle and having a suspended registration. 

Jose Munoz, 30, of Duarte, California, was charged Aug. 7 in Saratoga Springs with criminal trespass. 

Owen Taylor, 23, of Albany, was charged Aug. 7 in Saratoga Springs with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, and an equipment violation. 

 Jessica Scott, 32, of Ballston Spa, was charged Aug. 9 with criminal mischief. 

Bryan Browne, 54, of Saratoga Springs, was charged Aug. 9 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, operating an unregistered vehicle, making an unsafe turn, and possession of a controlled substance in a non-original container. 

Michael Hodson, 29, of Saratoga Springs, was charged Aug. 3 with false impersonation, and criminal possession of a controlled substance. 

Erik Chuley, 21, of Watervliet, was charged Aug. 3 in Saratoga Springs with assault. 

Sylvester Carmouche, 36, of Martinsburg, West Virginia, was charged Aug. 3 in Saratoga Springs with misdemeanor DWI, and failure to keep right.

Ramon Diaz, 59, of Cambridge, Massachusetts, was charged Aug. 3 in Saratoga Springs with misdemeanor DWI, failure to keep right and failure to stop at a stop sign. 

Darnell Butler, 24, of Hudson, Massachusetts, was charged Aug. 4 in Saratoga Springs with criminal possession of a controlled substance. 

Nicholas Valenti, 24, of Brunswick, was charged Aug. 4 in Saratoga Springs with criminal possession of a controlled substance. 

Joseph Dunne, 36, of Saratoga Springs, was charged Aug. 4 with unlawful imprisonment, and criminal obstruction of breathing/blood circulation. 

Luis Chiffone, 55, of Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, was charged Aug. 5 in Saratoga Springs with misdemeanor DWI, moving from lane unsafely, and refusal to take a breath test. 

Mychaela Downing, 26, of Malta, was charged Aug. 5 in Saratoga Springs with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, and failure to stop at a stop sign. 

Ralph Weddle, 62, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 30 with assault in the second-degree, and criminal possession of a weapon – both felonies. 

Michael Scoville, 24, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 30 with petit larceny. 

Mario Flores, 57, of Santa Paula, California, was charged July 31 with criminal trespass. 

Emily Vick, 41, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 31 with criminal mi8schief, and endangering the welfare of a child. 

Daniel Dudley, 43, of Queensbury, was charged Aug. 1 in Saratoga Springs with misdemeanor DWI and failure to obey traffic control device. 

Published in Police Blotter
Friday, 09 August 2019 10:03

City Democratic Committee Elects New Chair

SARATOGA SPRINGS – Several members of the Saratoga Springs Democratic Committee staged a walk-out last week, voicing their opposition to a candidate chosen by city voters for a seat on the City Council.

In this summer’s Democratic Primary for the party’s representation for Commissioner of Finance. challenger Patty Morrison defeated incumbent Michele Madigan by a 736-705 vote count. The city Democratic Committee (SSDC) had endorsed Madigan prior to the primary.

“We are resigning because we are unable to support Ms. Morrison for the position of Commissioner of Finance,” announced Charles Brown during an Aug. 1 press conference at High Rock Park, flanked by nearly a dozen others who presented themselves as resigning members of the SSDC. 

“We cannot support Patty Morrison for this position and stay on in the Committee,” Brown said, adding the resigning members believe Morrison “unqualified and ill-suited” for the office. “We’re all strong lifelong Democrats and plan to be Democrats, but we are Democrats that are independent of party (now), meaning therefore we can support a candidate without crossing the dictate of the party.”

The resignations follow last month’s walk-out of five members who served on the SSDC Executive Committee.  

Morrison countered that what matters most is the voice of resident city voters.  “Saratoga Springs citizens have spoken and the message is clear -- from what was said at the doors and most importantly at the ballot box in the recent election -- we are not happy with the current Commissioner of Finance, poor decisions at the Council table and we ultimately voted for change,” Morrison said in a statement.  

Morrison - on the Democratic line, and Madigan – who will appear on the Independence Party and Working Families Party lines, will face one another in the citywide general election on Nov. 5 when all five City Council positions, as well as two Saratoga Springs Supervisor seats, will be up for vote.

There is no Republican candidate challenging for the seat of Commissioner of Finance. 

“The June primary was about whose name will appear on the Democratic line for the office of Finance Commissioner this fall. But in November, every voter will be able to take part in choosing who actually wins this office,” Madigan said. 

“I have a strong record of achievement and a well-earned reputation for integrity, ethics, and transparency,” said Madigan, announcing the launch of a non-partisan coalition called One Saratoga, “to unite voters from across the political spectrum who share a common purpose of sustaining and enhancing the vibrancy of our great city.”

The Democratic Primary on June 25 returned 1,447 total ballots - there were 6 non-named write-in ballot votes - representing about 21.5 percent of the 6,730 registered city Democrats. The 1,447 number of votes represents an increase over the last Democratic Primary in Saratoga Springs, where a total of 913 voters participated in the 2015 vote for Public Safety Commissioner. 

The SSDC elected Sarah J. Burger as its new chair at an Aug. 7 meeting. A native of Saratoga Springs, Burger is founding partner at Burger Law Group PLLC and has been a longtime committee member. The committee also elected Cassandra Bagramian as its new treasurer. Bagramian is the Democratic deputy commissioner for Saratoga County Board of Elections.

Brown said the resigning members made a concerted effort to announce their departure as soon as was possible to allow remaining committee members “to follow through with the work that they needed to do. We’ve left them with $10,000 that we have earned over the years, we’ve left them with ramp-up manuals for procedures, and procedures for sub-committees.”   

Todd Kerner, chairman of the Saratoga County Democratic Committee, said “the Democratic Committee is like a family, we sometimes argue and disagree due to the passion we bring to public service. We want to thank those who are leaving for their hard work and dedication.  We continue to move ahead with an excellent slate of candidates and look forward to the November elections.”  

"There are a number of citizens eagerly waiting to join the committee and work in accordance to the will of the voters we are elected to serve,” Morrison said. “It is not unusual for there to be a change when leadership and the will of the electorate are misaligned. Our City Democratic Committee will be stronger going forward.    

Published in News
Thursday, 08 August 2019 13:47

August 9 – August 15, 2019

COURT 

Cendno Rahaman, 29, of Schenectady, was sentenced Aug. 2 to 40 years in state prison. Rahaman was convicted by a Saratoga County jury June 7 of attempted murder in the second-degree, three counts of attempted assault in the first-degree, one count assault in the second-degree, and one count of tampering with physical evidence. The cumulative 40 years determinate in state prison will be followed by post-release supervision and three orders of protection – in connection with three victims – which will be in effect until August 2067. According to the Saratoga County District Attorney’s office, Rahaman’s conviction stems from a late night incident in Saratoga Springs in August 2018 during which Rahaman pulled a knife from his pocket during a verbal altercation with three victims, proceeded to chase them up Caroline Street, swung his knife at the heads of two victims and repeatedly stabbed the third, causing the victim to bleed profusely.    

Austin D. Hanna, 22, of Moreau, pleaded Aug. 1 to failure to register as a sex offender. Sentencing Oct. 3. 

Ryan A. Winkelman, 19, of Moreau, was sentenced to five years of probation on July 31, after pleading to vehicular assault in the second-degree, a felony. 

Eric D. Weinstein, 24, of Vorheesville, pleaded July 29 to felony assault, in Saratoga Springs, Sentencing Sept. 30. 

Brent L. Pecor, 51, of Galway, pleaded July 29 to felony DWI, in Milton. Sentencing Sept. 30. 

Ivan M. Erchak, 45, of Saratoga Springs, was sentenced July 29 to 1 to 3 years in state prison, after pleading to felony burglary, and criminal possession of stolen property. 

Gerson Valverde, 36, of Scotia, was sentenced July 29 to 1 to 3 years in state prison, after pleading to aggravated family offense, in Saratoga Springs, and attempted assault, in Milton. Both charges are felonies. 

Kade D. Lapointe, 21, of Hudson Falls, was sentenced July 26 to one year in jail, after pleading to felony assault, in Moreau. 

Robert N. Lakus, 36, of Minerva, was sentenced July 29 to 1 to 3 years in state prion, after pleading to felony DWI, in Ballston Spa. 

POLICE

Austin J. Demarest, 24, of Corinth, was charged Aug. 1 with felony grand larceny. He is accused of stealing jewelry from a residence he was lawfully in at the time. 

Lakey McNeil, 38, of Wilton, was charged Aug. 1 with felony criminal mischief, and the misdemeanors: assault, criminal mischief, and criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation, after the Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office responded to a 911 hang-up call. McNeil is alleged to have damaged a motor vehicle resulting in damage in excess of $250, as well as intentionally causing physical injury  to another person by applying pressure to that person’s throat, and of intentionally disabling equipment while another person was using it to seek emergency assistance, according to police. 

Christopher Wallace, 39, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 23 with criminal possession of marijuana, a misdemeanor. 

Ada Clute, 66, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 24 with welfare fraud, and intent fraud. Both charges are felonies. 

Ryan Campbell, 26, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 24 with felony robbery, felony burglary, two misdemeanor counts petit larceny, and one misdemeanor count criminal tampering. 

Brittany Sader, 30, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 25 with misdemeanor petit larceny. 

Mario Flores, 57, of Santa Paula, CA, was charged July 25 with criminal trespass, a misdemeanor. 

Henry Jenkins, 31, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 25 with aggravated family offense, and criminal mischief – both felonies, and the misdemeanors: criminal mischief, endangering the welfare of a child, and assault. 

Tammy Bowman, 56, of Ballston Spa, was charged July 27 with misdemeanor DWI. 

Michael Morgan, 36, of Stillwater, was charged July 28 with criminal mischief felony, in Saratoga Springs.

Published in Police Blotter
Friday, 02 August 2019 12:26

Saratoga: On The Backstretch

SARATOGA SPRINGS – It is sunrise at Saratoga Race Course. On either side of Union Avenue, the work of tending to the horses by members of the backstretch community is already underway.

Here at the barns, many will work through the morning. For some, there is a mid-day break before returning for a few more hours of work in the late afternoon and early evening. Others have second jobs at the main track across the street. They work in food service, as parking attendants, or among the cleaning crews.

It is a routine much like any other year, but in the summer of 2019 the normal rhythm of the week is different. For racing fans, racehorse owners, trainers, managers, and the community of backstretch workers who live temporarily on-site, an adjustment is underway.  

Saratoga as a thoroughbred racing mecca was inaugurated in August 1863 on the north side of Union Avenue as a four-day meet. By the early 1900’s the length of the meet was extended to five weeks, the dates mostly congregated during the month of August. Overall, there were 24 such days in the 1960s as the Northway extended through the Spa City. Three decades later the number of race days incrementally increased: first to 30, then 34, and eventually 36.  For the 2010 season, the New York Racing Association expanded racing days in Saratoga from 36 to 40 racing days – which is where it remains to this day. The racing goes on six days a week. Tuesday had been designated as the “dark” day off.

In February, NYRA announced it was adjusting the racing dates for both the 2019 Belmont Park spring/summer and the Saratoga summer meet. The adjustment was made to accommodate the construction of an arena for the National Hockey League's New York Islanders at Belmont Park. This week, Michael Anderson of the website Fansided, reported that groundbreaking for the arena will get underway after Labor Day, with a completion and opening for the start of the October 2021 hockey season.

The opening of the Saratoga meet, which typically has started July 20 or later, this year began July 11. The number of racing days – 40 – remain the same. To compensate for the extended time in the Spa City a second “dark” day was added, extending Tuesday’s typical off-day to Monday and Tuesday each week.    The changes, at least at this point, appear to be temporary. 

“It’s been a learning experience for us and for the people and for the agencies to learn what are people going to do and where are they going to be,” says Nick Caras. Caras helps coordinate events and activities, among other things, for the backstretch community as programs director of the Race Track Chaplaincy of America’s New York Division.  “But, so far, I haven’t seen one person who doesn’t like the two days off. Not one,” he says.  

Mother Nature has also provided her own kinks. Two weeks into the meet, live racing was shortened  to four races due to heavy rain on July 25, and the entire racing card was cancelled July 20 due to excessive heat.  

The NY Racetrack Chaplaincy assists with the challenges facing the community of backstretch workers and their families, and helps provide resources to address those challenges at all three N.Y. racetracks, providing extensive programs and daily one-on-one meetings and counseling. The backstretch community numbers more than 800 people.

“Right now people are just getting accustomed to the two days off, there’s no norm yet,” Caras says. This is only week two, so people are still testing the waters: what do I do with these extra days? I definitely see a lot of that.” 

Eduardo Roa works in the jockey silks room. He has used the extra day off to take a ride to Cooperstown with three of his friend, as well as make it back home downstate and see his family. “I’ve been coming to Saratoga a long time, maybe 20 years or more,” Roa says. “It’s a very big difference between last year and now. The six days of races (in the past) was a lot. To have two days off, now I can go back home to the Bronx and see the family.”

“We feel more comfortable now with two days off,” says worker Fausto Morrocho, who spent some down time in the backstretch Recreation Hall, flanked by a quartet of pool tables, a foosball game and  ping-pong table. Twenty chairs sit in a semi-circle aimed at a pair of wall-mounted TVs, framed by a two vending machines: one dispenses candy snacks, the other, sodas. A posted sheaf of paper tacked to the wall announces the Monday night soccer tournaments in red hand-written marker.

“I’ve been coming up here 16 years now,” Morrocho says. ”The two days off are nice because we can go back and see our families. My family - my wife and my step-daughter – are back in New York. So, it’s much better. And it helps the riding work with the horses.”

“This week, with the extra day off from the horses, the New York Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association paid for a bus for 55 people to go to New York. In the past, with one day off out of those 55, that may have been one person who was able to go back,” Caras says. “They’re able to schedule their day off and go home. So right there that’s a big difference.”

About 70 percent of the Saratoga backstretch population come up to work from the Belmont and Aqueduct areas, says Caras, who has been involved with the Race Track Chaplaincy for several years and previously worked for NYRA for more than a quarter-century. “They’re loving the extra day off. Whether they get to go home, just sleep an additional 10 hours or go shopping. Eight people I know of went over to Brown’s Beachand another group of people went up to Lake George. The biggest difference this year with years past is they’re doing things more – even recreation – with a relaxed frame of mind.”

Backstretch activities include soccer games on Mondays and learning English as a Second Language on Tuesdays and Thursdays – the latter run by Saratoga EOC. John Hendrickson and the late Marylou Whitney helped create backstretch programs that this year run through August. The backstretch calendar depicts trips to the bowling alley and the rodeo, bingo games, a cruise on Lake George and a series of Sunday dinners that range from Italian to Mexican and a night of hot BBQ.

Downstate racing with days off is a different scenario because the majority of the backstretch community people are home, Caras explains. “When you’re at Belmont or Aqueduct you’re home. You have familiar surroundings. You know where you’re going to go to shop, where you do your laundry, you know where the eateries are and when things are open, so the lifestyle and our role in activities is much different at Belmont and Aqueduct than it is here, because that’s home base for 70 percent of the people. And when you’re home base, you’re a lot more self-sufficient. While we still pitch in and create activities, it’s not as necessary,” he says.   

“Our Chaplaincy in New York is located in all three racetracks. As a matter of fact, right now I’m fine- tuning a trip today that’s going to leave Belmont and Aqueduct and go to South Street seaport and they’re going to ride that speedboat called The Beast,” Caras says. “Last week, 55 people from both those racetracks, families and those who work there, went to Yankee Stadium on Wednesday night. We received some free tickets for that, and the Horsemen paid for the bus. On Thursday, 55 people went to Coney Island and used the beach. Friday night the families gathered, and there were 25 kids at a soccer clinic at Belmont. So, there’s still stuff going on down there, because while Daddy may be up here working, the majority of the families and kids by far are still there.”  

Published in News
Thursday, 01 August 2019 00:00

August 2 – August 8, 2019

At 7:31 a.m. on July 27, the Saratoga Springs Police Department received multiple calls for a large fight in front of 58 Kaydeross Ave. West after it appeared a gun was being displayed. When police responded to the scene, they were met by a person walking in the roadway who claimed he was at a party where a fight broke out and had a gun pointed at him. When officers visited the residence, they found an undetermined number of people inside and who would not acknowledge the police presence, according to authorities. After securing the perimeter and locating live and spent .22-cal. rifle rounds in the driveway, multiple attempts to have occupants emerge from the residence were unsuccessful. Additional officers were sent from the NYS Police and Saratoga County Sheriff’s Department. The SCSO Tactical team was dispatched to the location in the event that forced entry was required. The Saratoga Springs Fire Department also staged in the area to provide EMS response if needed and Kaydeross Ave West was closed down from Rte. 9 to Nelson Ave Ext. Over a two-and-a-half hour period, officers were able to get seven of the people in the residence to exit the home voluntarily. Ultimately the Tactical team made entry to the residence, and 4 more people were removed, as was a .22-cal. rifle. All participants allegedly involved in the original call have been identified and the case remains an open and active investigation, police said. 

Francisco J. Ortega-Hernandez, age 26, Jalisco, Mexico, was charged  July 25 with unlawful imprisonment – a felony, and the misdemeanors: criminal obstruction of breathing, and stalking.  The charges stem from a suspected assault that took place in the area of Phila Street and Nelson Avenue. The victim was a 35-year-old woman. Ortega-Hernandez is accused of observing and following the woman on Phila Street and once in the area of Nelson Avenue, grabbing her about the head and neck.  He was taken into custody after he had gone to Albany Airport, where he was slated to board a flight home to Mexico, police said. Ortega-Hernandez is a Mexican citizen who is in the U.S. legally on a H2B work visa. Ortega-Hernandez has been in the United States since June of this year and was properly credentialed to be upon NYRA property, police said. 

Joseph Minissale, 38, of Clifton Park, was charged in Saratoga Springs July 19 with felony assault. 

Cassandra Barden, 34, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 19 with misdemeanor assault and the felonies: aggravated family offense, and aggravated criminal contempt: violating an order of protection. 

Devin Bryant, 23, of Glens Falls, was charged July 19 in Saratoga Springs with criminal mischief. 

Dominick Holmes, 23, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 19 with misdemeanor assault, unlawful imprisonment, and criminal mischief. 

Elliot Sabatella, 18, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 20 with felony burglary. 

Joseph Baker, 20, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 20 with felony burglary.

Amy Watson, 32, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 23 with misdemeanor DWI, and driving a motor vehicle across a sidewalk, after being involved in a property damage accident. 

Tiffany Albert, 42, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 23 with felony grand larceny. 

Anastasia Reilly, 21, of Mechanicville, was charged July 16 in Saratoga Springs with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, unlawful possession of marijuana, and criminal use of drug paraphernalia. 

Garrett Williams, 27, of Hadley, was charged July 16 in Saratoga Springs with operating a motor vehicle impaired by drugs, criminal possession of a controlled substance, and failing to stop at a stop sign. 

Steven Maronic, 69, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 16 with harassment. 

Tyler Mosher, 29, of Ballston Spa, was charged July 18 in Saratoga Springs with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle. 

Wilbur Pratt, 86, of Ballston Spa, was charged July 18 in Saratoga Springs with criminal contempt, and violating an order of protection. 

Jacklyn Parker, 19, of Athol, was charged July 18 in Saratoga Springs with felony burglary, and felony grand larceny.   

Published in Police Blotter
Thursday, 25 July 2019 12:40

July 26 – August 1, 2019

COURT

Lawrence T. Williams, 33, of Accord, pleaded July 18 to attempted sexual abuse, a felony, in the town of Saratoga. Sentencing Sept. 26. 

Earl J. Pittman, 39, of Schenectady, pleaded July 18 to felony DWI, in Saratoga Springs. Sentencing Nov. 1. 

Jeremy J. Defibaugh, 26, of Ballston Spa, was sentenced July 22 to 4 years state prison, after pleading to two counts criminal possession of a controlled substance.

Tyvon M. Webb, 29, of Saratoga Springs, was sentenced July 22 to 2.5 years state prison, after pleading to criminal sale of a controlled substance.

John C. Rakstis, 42, of Ballston Spa, pleaded July 19 felony DWI. Sentencing Sept. 19. 

Fred F. Albright III, 37, of Saratoga Springs, pleaded July 16 to felony DWI. Sentencing Oct. 11. 

Francis X. Walling, 55, of Ballston Spa, was sentenced to 1 to 3 years in state prison, after pleading to possessing a sexual performance by a child. 

Paul R. Ashdown, Jr., 41, of Mechanicville, was sentenced July 12 to 1.5 to 3 years state prison, after pleading to attempted criminal possession of stolen property, in Malta. 

Erik A. Pagan, 45, of Saratoga Springs, pleaded July 12 to criminal purchase or disposal of a weapon, and attempted assault. All charges are felonies.  Sentencing Sept. 27. 

POLICE

Shane Wilbur, 25, of Wilton, was charged July 13 with criminal possession of stolen property in the fifth-degree, a misdemeanor, and possession of a forged instrument in the second-degree, a felony.   

Matthew S. Lawrence, 22, of Corinth, was charged July 14 with criminal mischief misdemeanor, and reckless endangerment felony. Lawrence is suspected of firing a rifle recklessly and striking a residence in Corinth, causing damage. 

Adelord M. Irish, 36, of Schuylerville, was charged July 15 with aggravated driving while intoxicated, as well as boating while intoxicated. Irish is accused of operating both a motor vehicle and a vessel while intoxicated. 

Michael Donato, 35, of Albany, was charged July 12 with misdemeanor DWI, operating a motor vehicle without inspection certificate, and following too closely. 

Sarah Flexon, 21, of Albany, was charged July 13 with misdemeanor DWI, and two driving violations.

Keith Owen, 41, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 13 with criminal contempt, resisting arrest, aggravated family offense, and assault with intent to cause injury to officer. 

On July 13-14, the Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office marine patrol unit along with marine patrols from the New York State Park Police and the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Police participated in a boater safety initiative on Saratoga Lake.  The purpose of the initiative was to promote safe boating, target impaired boaters and target aggressive and reckless operation of vessels. As a result of the initiative, a total of 23 navigation citations were issued for a variety of safety, speed and equipment violations.  One person was also cited for misdemeanor reckless operation of a vessel.

Gabrielle Sullivan, 22, of Ballston Lake, was charged July 14 with disorderly conduct and assault with intent to cause injury to officer, related to an incident that occurred on Caroline Street. 

 Robert Faith, 34, of Greenfield Center, was charged July 15 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, and speeding. 

Jeffrey Bishop, 27, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 15 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, speeding, operating an unregistered vehicle, criminal possession of a controlled substance, and unlawful possession of marijuana. 

Published in Police Blotter

SARATOGA SPRINGS - His color-filled storytelling murals cling to the walls of Gaffney’s and Siro’s and the Old Bryan Inn, 9 Maple Ave., the Tin & Lint and inside of Saratoga Springs City Hall.

Hud Armstrong’s creations include those happy faces and local scenes brought to life - a different one each year - emblazoned across the annual Chowderfest T-shirts for the past generation. Then there is a near 20-feet-long mural that runs across the lobby of the Mabee Building on Church Street, depicting more than 200 local people – many of whom you’d recognize - done up in the Victorian Era stylings of the 19th century. 

“The purpose is to give a feeling of the era and some of the characters that lived here,” says Armstrong.

His newest project – which he displays in a series of carefully detailed scrapbooks – is coordinating about 300 pages illustrations and accompanying texts he created from 1991 to 2004 for Poor Richard’s Journal into book form, and has begun the process of exploring ways to make such a publication a possible. 

“The area where these take place is often Saratoga, but what’s happening is universal,” Armstrong explains, leafing through the pages of the catalogued works. 

Armstrong started drawing at the age of four while listening to the radio because he wanted to see what things looked like. Some of his earliest childhood memories growing up in South Glens Falls involve visits to Saratoga Springs and marveling at the vintage structures.

 “I remember when I was a kid, we would drive down Route 9 and into Saratoga. You’d take a left on North Broadway where the arterial is, come right into town and you’d see the mansions and the fire department and the theater.”

In the 1960s, he celebrated his 21st birthday by completing basic training, then going to see the company commander who would decide his next move.

“He looked over my file and saw I had a background in art. I don't know what it was about my dossier, but something in there made him think, 'Hey, this guy will be really good in amphibians!' So off I went for amphibian training and ended up being sent to Qui Nhon,” he remembered about his time on the Vietnam coast, south of Da Nang.

His works often straddle a timeline between future and past, offering a respectful nod to those who have come before, imagining what may lie up ahead, and in a few quick strokes of ink explaining the significance of what it all means to us today.   

One of the more playful sequences is a series of cartoons depicting vintage baseball fields - the Polo Grounds, Ebbets Field, the classic Yankee Stadium.

“What you’re looking at is centerfield,” he explains, gesturing to the latter. “On one side you’ve got Joe Torre and his group: Rivera and Jeter. On the other side you’ve got Casey Stengel and Mickey Mantle, Maris and Yogi, even Ruth and Gehrig. When you look further out into the field, from the centerfield flagpole is Yankee Stadium - the way that it was recently, and on the other side Yankee Stadium from the 1920s to the ‘70s.”  

Armstrong likes to keep simple the process of creating his cartoons. “You pretty much form an idea. From that idea you might have a punchline, you might not, but you work up to it, you play it back-and-forth,” he says. “When you get to the end sometimes the punchline will work. If it doesn’t? The best thing to do is flip the whole thing around, and then it becomes funny.”

Published in Entertainment
Thursday, 18 July 2019 00:00

July 19 – July 25, 2019

COURT

Philip E. Griffith, Jr., 54, of Gansevoort, pleaded July 10 to felony DWI in Wilton. Sentencing scheduled Sept. 10. 

Arthur A. Gannon, Corinth. On July 11, Saratoga County District Attorney Karen Heggen announced the Appellate Division, Third Department, affirmed the conviction of Arthur A. Gannon regarding multiple sex crimes committed against two young girls in the town of Corinth. Gannon was convicted in Saratoga County Court by a jury following seven weeks of trial in 2016 for repeatedly abusing two young victims over a period of more than five years, Heggen said. He was sentenced to 25 years-to-life for each of five counts of predatory sexual assault felonies. 

Albert B. Mercer, 63, of Saratoga Springs, was sentenced on July 8 to 20 years in jail following a jury verdict which found Mercer guilty of first-degree manslaughter and tampering with physical evidence – both felonies.  According to the Saratoga County District Attorney’s Office, Mercer was involved in an altercation with his wife’s cousin, who Mercer stabbed with a knife causing his death. The trial lasted 10 days and involved more than 25 witnesses and 200 items of evidence.    

POLICE

Michael B. Tranka, 52, of Wilton, was charged July 8 with misdemeanor DWI and aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle. 

Christopher Sprague, 39, of Ballston Spa, was charged July 8 with misdemeanor petit larceny in Saratoga Springs. 

Andrew Gardner, 41, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 9 with criminal tampering and resisting arrest – both misdemeanors. 

Kathryn Fasano, 45, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 9 with third degree assault, criminal possession of a weapon, menacing, acting in a manner causing injury to a child, and aggravated criminal contempt – a felony in connection with violating an order of protection. 

Olivia Ciliento, 21, of Mechanicville, was charged July 10 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, resisting arrest, and multiple vehicle related violations. 

Rebecca Kane, 52, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 11 with criminal mischief, a misdemeanor. 

Matthew Carle, 35, of Ramona, California, was charged July 12 with criminal possession of a controlled substance, in Saratoga Springs. 

Augustus Balsamo, 35, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 12 with criminal trespass in the third-degree, a misdemeanor. 

The Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office and the Saratoga Springs Police Department conducted a joint operation targeting the suspected possession and sales of illicit drugs in the Saratoga Springs area on July 2-3. In total, 14 drug related arrests were made including a fugitive from justice out of the state of Virginia.  Over the course of the two-day operation there were 146 traffic stops, 51 traffic tickets issued, 7 felony charges, 13 misdemeanor charges, 3 violation charges and 1 fugitive from justice charge.  The people charged include:
Robert Schumann, 39, of Richmondville, V.A., charged with one count of Fugitive from Justice, two counts of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree and False Personation. 

Michael Epperson, 42, of Anderson, ID., charged with one count of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree. 

Ross Locke, 35, of North Attleborough, MA, charged with one count of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree. 

Aaron Bedard, 27, of North Attleborough, MA, charged with one count of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree and one count of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the fourth degree. 

Kyle Sarzin, 30, of North Attleborough, MA, charged with one count of unlawful possession of marijuana. 

Marshall Branch, 32, of Albany, charged with one count of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree. 

Sean Halper, 30, of Oxford, MA, charged with one count of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the seventh degree, one count of criminal possession of a controlled substance in the fourth degree and one count of criminal sale of a controlled substance in the fifth degree. 

Jonathan Theriault, 33, of Worcester, MA, charged with one count of criminal sale of a controlled substance on the fifth degree. 

Published in Police Blotter
Thursday, 11 July 2019 00:00

July 12 – July 18, 2019

COURT

Nathan W. Preston, 37, of Johnson City, was sentenced July 3 to 1 year in jail, after pleading to felony DWI in Saratoga Springs. 

Elizabeth A. Stanley, 22, of Schenectady, was sentenced July 1 to 1 year in jail, after pleading to criminal sale of a controlled substance, in Malta. 

Sheila E. Wray, 62, of Saratoga Springs, was sentenced July 1 to 1.5-to-5.5 years in state prison, after pleading to felony DWI. 

Steven Welch, no address provided, was sentenced July 2 to 1.5-to-3 years state prison, after pleading to criminal contempt in the first-degree, in Saratoga Springs.   

Jonathan Reyes, 33, of Lakeland, Florida, pleaded July 2 to criminal possession of a controlled substance, a felony, in Malta. Sentencing Sept. 9. 

POLICE

Travis Marris, 30, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 1 with criminal mischief, and endangering the welfare of a child. Both charges are misdemeanors. 

Dawson Nigro, 20, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 2 with misdemeanor DWI and aggravated DWI, leaving the scene of an accident, refusing to take a breath test, and multiple vehicle violations, following a property damage accident on Spring Street. 

Jeremy McClary, 41, of Mayfield, was charged July 2 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle and circumventing an interlock system.

Kurt Cederholm, 36, of Brooklyn, was charged July 3 with criminal possession of a controlled substance, a misdemeanor.

Joshua Rotenberg, 34, of Arvada, Colorado, was charged July 3 with criminal possession of a controlled substance, a misdemeanor, and unlawful possession of marijuana. 

Jacqueline Palmer, 29, of Scio, Oregon, was charged July 3 with criminal possession of a controlled substance, a misdemeanor, and unlawful possession of marijuana. 

Stacey Zbar, 62, of Queens, was charged July 3 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle. 

Thomas Bruni, 46, of Schenectady, was charged July 4 with criminal mischief, a misdemeanor. 

Joseph Macik, 28, of Pittsfield, Massachusetts, was charged July 3 with criminal possession of a controlled substance, a misdemeanor. 

Kara Montville, 28, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 4 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, a misdemeanor, after being involved in a property damage accident on Ballston Avenue. 

Drew McCarthy, 35, of Halfmoon, was charged July 7 in Malta with criminal possession of a controlled substance, a felony, and DWAI, a misdemeanor. McCarthy is suspected of operating a vehicle while under the influence of a drug, and of possessing in excess of 500 milligrams of cocaine. 

Sara M. Savoca, 34, of Waterford, was charged July 8 with second degree vehicular assault – a felony, operating a vessel while having a blood-alcohol concentration of .08% or greater, and reckless operation of a vessel. Savoca is accused of operating a vessel while intoxicated on Saratoga Lake and striking another vessel, an occupant of which suffered a serious hand injury, according to the Saratoga County Sheriff’s office.    

Lindsay Griffith, 37, of Los Angeles, California, was charged July 6 with criminal possession of a controlled substance, a misdemeanor. 

Theresa Dimillo, 38, of Arvada, Colorado, was charged July 6 with criminal possession of a controlled substance, a misdemeanor. 

Joyce Epps, 30, of Mayfield, was charged July 6 with criminal possession of a controlled substance, a misdemeanor. 

Richard Tooley, 33, of Ballston Spa, was charged July 7 with assault in the third-degree. 

Michael Manning, 52, of Ballston Spa, was charged July 7 with misdemeanor DWI, and a speeding violation, on Union Avenue. 

Trevor Keniry-Thompson, 20, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 7 with aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, and failure to stop at a stop sign.

Anthony Damiano, 49, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 7 with misdemeanor DWI, and speeding. 

Kathleen Brown, 26, of Saratoga Springs, was charged July 8 with petit larceny, and making a falsely written statement. Both charges are misdemeanors. 

Brandon Welfinger, 23, of Malta, was charged with rape in the third-degree, a felony.  The Saratoga County Sheriff’s Office charged Welfinger in connection with an alleged sexual relationship he had with a female under the age of 17. 

Published in Police Blotter

BALLSTON SPA – Patty Morrison, an elected Saratoga Springs School District Board Trustee, defeated sitting City Council member Michele Madigan in the city’s Democratic Primary race, which was decided this week.

Primary Elections were held June 25 but resulted in a too-close-to-call verdict, with Morrison holding a slight lead. The counting of absentee ballots at the Saratoga County Board of Elections on July 2 resulted in a 59-47 margin in favor of Morrison, and an overall lead of 765-733, unofficially.

“I’m honored and humbled to reach this point in the process,” Morrison said, in a statement released Tuesday, thanking supporters and volunteers. “This was a huge grassroots effort with my team knocking on over 3,300 doors and spending a small fraction of what my opponent did.”

The race between Morrison and Madigan is for the position of Saratoga Springs Commissioner of Finance – one of five City Council seats. All five council seats, as well as both City Supervisor positions, will be up for vote in November. 

Madigan issued a statement Tuesday and said she was “saddened and disappointed to have lost the Democratic primary for Commissioner of Finance, due to low voter turn-out.  I wish to thank my many friends and supporters for their hard work in the face of a very difficult and at times an ugly primary campaign.”

Total voter turnout for the Primary Election represents approximately 22 percent of all registered Democrats in Saratoga Springs.  

Prior to the Primary Election, Madigan received the endorsement of the Saratoga Springs City Democratic Committee, as well as the backing of the the Independence Party and Working Families Party lines. Despite the loss in the Primary, Madigan – who is a registered Democrat – appears poised to run for re-election under those lines in the November General Election.   

“I hope to serve another term and would be grateful for the support of all city voters, regardless of political persuasion, come November 5th,” Madigan said.

Given the city Democratic Committee’s endorsement of Madigan in the Primary, Morrison’s victory among Democrat voters nudges the Committee into unchartered territory: The candidate they had endorsed, and who is a registered Democrat, will potentially be running for re-election on a different party line in a race against the candidate chosen by city Democrat voters.

“We’ll be having an executive (meeting) to figure this out, because this is a unique position,” said Saratoga Springs Democratic Committee Chairwoman Courtney DeLeonardis. While the full Democratic Committee is not scheduled to meet until September, DeLeonardis said the seven-member executive committee may meet as soon as early next week to decide how to proceed moving forward.

Candidate statements, in their entirety, may be viewed below.  

Patty Morrison: I’m honored and humbled to reach this point in the process.  I want to thank all my supporters and volunteers.  This was a huge grassroots effort with my team knocking on over 3,300 doors and spending a small fraction of what my opponent did.

Our goal now is to listen and represent all voters in this city, despite their political affiliation.  I look forward to working with the City Democratic Committee to advance our Democratic principles such as quality of life issues for the residents of Saratoga Springs.  Issues such as open government, implementing transparent, ethical processes and exercising balanced development that aligns with the fragile historic character we all cherish.

I pledge to bring long term, prudent fiscal planning as your next Commissioner of Finance and look forward to meeting thousands more residents to discuss their thoughts and concerns.

I’m focused on running a positive and inclusive campaign.  

Michele Madigan: I am saddened and disappointed to have lost the Democratic primary for Commissioner of Finance, due to low voter turn-out.  I wish to thank my many friends and supporters for their hard work in the face of a very difficult and at times an ugly primary campaign.

 I am still on the general ballot in November on the Independence Party and Working Families Party lines, and while I would very much like to continue to serve all city voters - of all political parties - for another term, at this time the budget needs of the city are my priority.

 I must present the 2020 budget by the end of the summer, and get it adopted in November. Additionally, the city has several multi-million dollar matters I must continue to plan for: repairing and reopening city hall, the Loughberry Dam upgrade mandates, Fire/EMS needs of the Eastern Plateau, finding a permanent solution to code-blue and our homeless issues, cybersecurity threats that plague cities daily - for starters.  I owe it to the taxpayers to focus on this city business.

 I hope to serve another term and would be grateful for the support of all city voters, regardless of political persuasion, come November 5th. This election is not about partisan politics or any particular issue; it is about prudently managing our city’s finances through challenging times.

Published in News
Page 23 of 66

Blotter

  • Saratoga County Court  Sara N. Babinski, 35, of Schuylerville, was sentenced to 3 months incarceration/ 5 years probation, after pleading to felony DWAI, charged January 2024 in Saratoga Springs.  Thomas R. McCall, 35, of Rensselaer, pleaded to criminal possession of a weapon in the second-degree, in connection with a March 2024 incident in Saratoga Springs, when city police initiated a traffic stop on a vehicle on South Broadway and located a Magnum .357 revolver with ammunition underneath the driver’s seat, according to a statement by Saratoga County District Attorney Karen Heggen. Further investigation determined that the firearm belonged to the defendant,…

Property Transactions

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