Monday, September 18, 2017 at 12:27 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, fire, news, Perry, Castile, Warsaw, Wyoming.

Firefighters from three counties spent six-and-one-half hours late Friday night battling a blaze in Perry. The fire at 7096 Burke Hill Road was reported around 11 p.m. and remains under investigation.

Crews from Perry, Perry Center, Castile, Warsaw, Wyoming, Pavilion, Cuylerville, York, Leicester, and Mount Morris fire departments were on the scene with Fire Chief in Charge Perry Center Fire Chief Harold Wright.

Assisting at the scene included Wyoming County Emergency Services, the Sheriff’s Office, and NYSEG. Standing by at empty fire stations were Silver Springs and Gainesville fire departments.

There were no injuries reported in the incident that caused an estimated $100,000 in damages.

Friday, September 15, 2017 at 4:34 pm
posted by Howard Owens in Perry, crime.

There's no more benefit of the doubt for Nicole Kimberly Sullivan in Judge Charles Zambito's Genesee County courtroom.

The 32-year-old Perry resident who lives on Covington Street is already charged with assault, 2nd, and endangering the welfare of an incompetent or physically disabled person. She was arrested on allegations this week that she and a partner concocted a scheme to steal more than $700 in phone cases from Walmart. She's also been accused of continuing to use drugs while in a residential treatment facility.

Zambito canceled her release under supervision contract Wednesday afternoon and ordered her held on $5,000 bail or $10,000 bond in Genesee County Jail. 

While Assistant District Attorney Shirley Gorman argued that Sullivan should be considered a flight risk, her attorney, David Silverberg, argued that she wasn't a flight risk but clearly is having difficulty complying with her release terms pending her trial. He asked for reasonable bail.

Sullivan is accused of fleeing the scene of an accident on Fargo Road in the Town of Stafford on June 10, 2016, and leaving behind a seriously injured person who also had a disability.

Friday, September 15, 2017 at 4:28 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Perry, Warsaw.
      Richard Gargula

During Thursday’s Wyoming County Court appearance, Richard Gargula, 33, of Perry, garnered prison time, fines, fees, and probation.

His latest appearance in court earned him five years in prison with two years post-release supervision and $100 restitution on the conviction of criminal sale of a controlled substance in the third degree, a Class B felony.

This sentence is to run concurrently with his Warsaw sentence.

He was also sentenced to a conditional discharge, a $500 fine, and fees and surcharges on the conviction of driving while ability impaired by drugs.

Additionally, he was sentenced to one-and-one-third to four years in prison, and fees and surcharges on the conviction of attempted promoting prison contraband.

This latest round of sentencing stems from an Aug. 31 guilty plea on the drug sale charges. On May 25 he pled guilty to the contraband charges. The DWAI – drugs charge is from an Aug. 11 stop on Shearing Road in the Town of Gainesville.​

See related: Pike man pled guilty to drug charges

Friday, September 15, 2017 at 3:11 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Perry, Warsaw.

Nicole K. Sullivan, 31, of Perry, and Crystal M. Bouter, 28, of Batavia, were each charged Sept. 12 with petit larceny and conspiracy in the sixth degree. Genesee County Sheriff’s deputies say Sullivan and Bouter are accused of stealing several cell phone cases from Walmart, Batavia. The items were valued at $785.77. The conspiracy charge stems from the accusation that the duo had agreed to work in concert to steal the items. They were arraigned in Batavia Town Court where they were both put in the Genesee County Jail on $1,000 bail. They are due in court Sept. 22.

Dustin Lockwood, 26, of Manesburg, Pa., was charged Sept. 14 with driving while intoxicated. New York State Troopers say Lockwood was stopped on Route 20A, Warsaw, for driving 50 in a 30 mph zone. During the stop, he performed standardized field sobriety testing, which he is accused of failing. He was taken to the State Police barracks in Warsaw where he allegedly showed a BAC of .08 percent. He is due in the Village of Warsaw Court in October.

Lisa Uveino (Braymiller), 37, and David Purdy, 34, both of Perry, were arrested Aug. 24 following a shoplifting complaint at Dollar General, Perry. Uveino was charged with petit larceny and conspiracy in the sixth degree. Purdy was charged with conspiracy in the sixth degree. Perry Police say an employee told officers she saw Purdy attempt to stand in the way of security cameras when Uveino allegedly placed a box of sinus headache medicine in her purse. Both suspects then left the store, store officials say. The medication was valued at $3. Purdy was released on his own recognizance. Uveino, who is currently on probation, was put in Wyoming County Jail without bail. Both are due in court at a later date and both have been banned from the Dollar General.

Scott E. Lefort, 41, of Warsaw, was charged Sept. 14 with uninspected motor vehicle and displayed forged certificate of inspection. Wyoming County Sheriff’s deputies say Lefort was stopped on Route 20A in Warsaw for an inspection sticker which had expired in 2015. During the stop, it was allegedly found that a forged 2017 inspection sticker was on the vehicle. He is due in the Town of Warsaw Court Sept. 25.

Thursday, September 14, 2017 at 4:28 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, announcements, Perry, tourism.


Information sourced from both a press release and local sources, file photo:

The Village of Perry is set to receive $77,900 in federal funding to support technical assistance in managing the Letchworth Gateway Villages project and to promote tourism in the region.

Letchworth Gateway Villages is a collaborative initiative led by the villages of Perry, Mount Morris and Geneseo. The idea behind the project is to bring about economic growth and tourism-related market opportunities for the areas serving as “gateways” to Letchworth State Park.

“This (funding) is related to Year 2 funding for the Letchworth Gateway Villages program,” said Village of Perry Mayor Rick Hauser. “We spearheaded and administer the program but it’s a partnership between Perry, Mount Morris and Geneseo.”

“One of the key gaps identified by project stakeholders in Year 1 was the absence a destination-focused website that comprehensively links together the Letchworth region’s unique places, attractions and businesses in a compelling and easy to access digital format,” said Nicole Manapol, director at Letchworth Gateway Villages.

“In Year 2, funds will be used to undertake a regional branding process, the tangible result of which will be a destination-focused website that better highlights the region's assets, enhances the visitor experience and seeks to attract new, strategic market segments to the area.”

Tourism represents an important economic driver and growing source of revenue for state and local governments. In New York State tourism is now the fourth largest employer. A little closer to home in the Finger Lakes, tourism brings in $2.9 billion in revenue to local businesses and generates $376 million in state and local taxes. 

According to the most recent data, Wyoming County’s tourism impact is up 6.3 percent. This represents $43.8 million in traveler spending over 2015 levels. Additionally, Wyoming County is the second highest in terms of growth in the Greater Niagara region, which it is a part of.

“This federal investment is a win-win for the Village of Perry and neighboring villages,” said U.S. Senate Minority Leader Charles E. Schumer. “With support from the USDA’s Rural Business Development Grant program, the Village of Perry will be able to promote tourism to the region, enriching the regional economy and supporting local jobs.

"I am proud to announce this federal investment and will continue to fight to make sure that rural communities have the tools and facilities needed to grow and prosper.”

Approximately 700,000 visitors visit Letchworth State Park every year, hailing from places as far away as Australia and China. Yet despite this volume, communities surrounding the Park have not fully tapped this visitor market or fully realized the true economic potential of travel and tourism in the region.

Another core component of what Letchworth Gateway Villages does is to collect data, conduct research and provide analysis to inform decision-making at the municipal and county levels.

A great example of this is the current survey work we're undertaking to better understand what attracts travelers to the region, what improvements are needed to enhance their experience and what is the best way to communicate with them,” Manapol said. “The results will help identify what new tourism related market opportunities there may be for municipalities and the county to pursue that are aligned with our regional strengths.”

The data will also help with building business capacity, attracting investment, and focus marketing efforts for greater impact.

In addition to helping states and localities build a strong tax base, a vibrant travel and tourism industry creates a “virtuous cycle” of economic benefits. A strong tourism base improves the quality of life for local residents and makes a community more attractive to potential employees and businesses, say officials in Schumer’s Office.

“This is an important investment for the Village of Perry,” said U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand, a member of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. “These federal funds will help revitalize the community by promoting tourism in the region. I will continue to fight for funding in the Senate that will help boost the local economy and showcase the community for visitors to our area.”

USDA Rural Development's mission is to increase economic opportunity and improve the quality of life for rural residents. This funding is awarded through the Rural Business Development Grant program, administered by the USDA’s Rural Development agency.

The Agency is committed to improving economies and lives in rural America, through loans, grants and loan guarantees. They support local businesses, individuals and communities by promoting economic development, offering loans and providing technical assistance.

For more information on Letchworth Gateway Villages visit or read its blog Rural Development Solutions.

Thursday, September 14, 2017 at 3:32 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Perry, Warsaw.

The following were in Wyoming County Court before Judge Michael Mohun Sept. 7.

Jason Anderson, who committed a crime in Perry, pled guilty to attempted grand larceny in the third degree, a Class E felony. He was sentenced to one-year interim probation, and ordered to pay $4,5`2.50 in restitution within two weeks from Sept. 7. The case has been adjourned to March 8.

Catherine Tidd, who committed a crime in Warsaw, pled guilty to falsifying business records in the first degree, a Class E felony. Sentencing is scheduled Dec. 7.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017 at 11:53 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Java, Perry, Arcade, Warsaw, Business.

Information sourced from a press release

The Arts Council for Wyoming County (ACWC) and the Wyoming County Chamber of Commerce and Tourism announce the fourth annual Wyoming County Women's Business Summit. The event will be held from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Sept. 28 at Beaver Hollow Conference Center/Biggest Loser Resort Niagara, 1083 Pit Road, Java Center. The theme of this year’s summit is “Close to Home.”

The keynote speaker for the event is local business owner and entrepreneur Keirsten Schaffer. Participants will also attend several break-out sessions, a luncheon of locally sourced foods, and a panel discussion featuring Wyoming County business women.

"We are very pleased to co-host the fourth Women's Business Summit with the ACWC at Beaver Hollow,” said Wyoming County Chamber President Scott Gardner. "Our continued goal is to bring women business owners, professionals, and entrepreneurs, a unique opportunity to hear from dynamic presenters on a wide range of issues relevant to the personal and professional lives of Wyoming County’s professional women in business."

Shaffer, the owner of Lila Pilates in Perry, began her career in community and economic development in Livingston and Wyoming counties. In 2001, she co-founded the Perry Farmers’ Market. She also spent four years as a healthcare marketing consultant for the Wyoming County Community Health System.

In 2006, Shaffer was diagnosed with acute promyelocytic leukemia. Subsequently, she put her efforts on the study of bodywork, movement, and wellness. At the Summit, she will discuss her journey to wellness and how she found movement and massage therapy to be the key to her overall health. She says the therapy ultimately improves and enhances her work performance.

"Every year we incorporate the ACWC’s year-long theme into the Women’s Summit,” said ACWC Executive Director Jacqueline Hoyt. “I am eager to hear the different interpretations regarding ‘Close to Home’ within the context of our women owned businesses or women in the work place. I am especially eager to hear how our keynote speaker Keirsten Schaffer will weave her information about the human body into the theme.”

Other presenters include:

    • Negotiating Skills: Victoria Reynolds, deputy district director, U.S. Small Business Administration

    • Multi-Generational Workplaces – Finding the Strengths: JoBeth Rath, trainer/Goodwill Industries

    • Personal Branding: Kelly Tracy, recruiter, Pioneer/Navient

    • Social Media, Where do You Want to Be?: Jessica Seymour, partner MOTIV Digital Media 

 Panel discussion speakers include:

    • Sarah Keeler, owner/instructor – Genesee Dance Theatre, Perry

    • Lisa Seewaldt, owner – Ash-Lin’s Elegant Rose Florist and Gift Shop, Warsaw

    • Laura DeBadts, independent senior sales director – Mary Kay, Warsaw

    • Sarah Billings, owner / Lead Stylist – slb salon & boutique Inc., Perry

    • Sandra Pirdy, owner – Creekside Fabrics, and motivational speaker/ instructor, Arcade

 The daylong summit is co-sponsored by the Beaver Hollow Conference Center/Biggest Loser Resort Niagara, Women’s OB-GYN of Warsaw, and Silver Lake Brewing Project in Perry.

General admission is $80 per person; $70 for ACWC and Chamber members. Seating is limited.

For more information or to register email Kelly Ashcraft at or call the Chamber office at (585) 786-0307.

Monday, September 11, 2017 at 11:50 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Perry, Arcade.
nichole_dacey.jpg jessica_ruch.jpg
     Nichole Dacey       Jessica Ruch

Nichole Dacey, 30, and Jessica Ruch, 35, both of Perry, were each charged Sept. 6 with one count of burglary in the second degree and two counts of petit larceny. The duo is accused of stealing a television from an apartment they shared with a friend. Additionally, Perry Police say they then entered the next door neighbor’s apartment while they were not home and stole their TV. Both alleged thefts are said to have happened Aug. 31. Officials also say the suspects then sold the TVs to a pawn shop in the Rochester area. Dacey and Ruch were picked up by the Livingston County Sheriff’s Office on arrest warrants and turned over to the Perry Police Department.

    Summer Spencer

Summer Spencer, 37, of Arcade, was charged Sept. 7 with welfare fraud in the fourth degree and offering a false instrument to file in the first degree, both as felonies. Spencer is accused of failing to report everyone who was living in the household. By failing to report everyone, she collected more than $22,000 in benefits she was not entitled to. She is due in the Town of Warsaw Court Sept. 11.

Thursday, September 7, 2017 at 1:10 pm


Information sourced from press releases, photo submitted.

One of the Northeast’s largest arts and crafts shows welcomes new artists to start their career in an Emerging Artist program.

The Letchworth Arts & Crafts show welcomes the next generation of professional artists to join more than 330 vendors at this year’s show. The show now hosts up to 90,000 people and includes artists from around the country.

“At the last Letchworth Arts & Crafts Show, we launched this program with great success,” said ACWC Emerging Artist program coordinator Pilar McKay. “The artists were able to network with each other and with us. In fact, one artist returned to exhibit her art in Wyoming County.”

Acceptance in this program will include display and selling space in an indoor venue (north shelter) at the show on Oct. 8 and 9. Accepted emerging artists will have no booth fee for their space.

Artists will be responsible for staffing and selling their works during this day. They should anticipate being on-site at the show both Sunday and Monday including teardown of all art by 5:30 p.m. Oct. 9.

Artists will be approved after a completed application is submitted. Applications are accepted via email ( or in the mail/in person at 31 S. Main St., Perry, NY 14530.

All Applications must be submitted by Sept. 30.

Criteria for application include:

    • Either currently attend college/university or recently graduated from college (within the last two years). All levels of college/university students welcomed: from associates to bachelors to MFA students. All majors welcomed: applicant does not have to be studying in a visual studies/art program to submit an arts & crafts application;

    • Produced a body of work in the last two to three years;

    • A brief personal statement about applying to Letchworth Arts & Crafts Show (500-word maximum);

    • An artist statement (500-word maximum);

    • A resume (one-page maximum);

    • Minimum of three and up to five digital images of work created in the last three years – images can include multiple pieces of art, but be mindful that the jury must be able to see detail in the work;

    • One image of artist creating their art;

    • Present a Sales Tax Certificate of Authority;   

    • Applicant must submit application materials by email on or before Sept. 30. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed;

    • No application fee; and

    • Optional: Attendance to one of two virtual orientations (conference calls) to the festival or confirmation with the Emerging Artist coordinator.

For questions email McKay at

Thursday, September 7, 2017 at 12:28 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Warsaw, Attica, Arcade, Perry.
hunter.jpg josephite.jpg
    Shawn Hunter     Jenna Josephite

Members of the Wyoming County Drug Task Force arrested two individuals for allegedly selling crack cocaine in Warsaw.

Shawn Hunter, 33, and Jenna Josephite, 28, were charged Aug. 31 with criminal sale of a controlled substance in the third degree and criminal possession of a controlled substance in the third degree, both as Class B felonies. Officials in the Sheriff’s Office say Hunter, of Rochester, and Josephite, of Batavia, are suspected of selling a large quantity of the drug to a person that had been under surveillance by the DTF.

According to officials, the incident happened in the parking lot at the Warsaw Shopping Plaza, Main Street, Warsaw.

Hunter was put in Wyoming County Jail without bail. Josephite was jailed in lieu of $20,000 cash bail.

Task Force members were assisted at the scene by uniform members of the Sheriff’s Office, the New York State, and Warsaw Village police departments.

The DTF includes officers from the Sheriff’s Office, as well as from the Arcade, Attica, Perry and Warsaw police departments.

Suspected illegal drug activity can be reported to the confidential drug tip line at (585) 786-8965.

Thursday, September 7, 2017 at 10:52 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, fire, Perry, Castile, Warsaw, Wyoming, Silver Springs.

Smoke detectors woke a sleeping couple around 11 p.m. Sept. 6, alerting them to a fire and giving them time to escape the blaze.

The fire began in the garage of 6186 Burke Hill Road, Perry. According to fire officials, a car inside an attached garage had caught fire, which spread into the home.

Crews from Perry, Perry Center, Castile, Warsaw, Wyoming and Pavilion fire departments, and Mount Morris Emergency Medical Services responded to the late night fire.

Assisting Fire Chief in Charge Perry Center Chief Harold Wright were Wyoming County Emergency Services, the Sheriff’s Office and NYSEG.

Standing by at empty fire stations included Silver Springs, Cuylerville and York fire departments.

Firefighters were on the scene for four-and-one-half hours with no injuries reported.

The estimated cost of damages is $100,000.

Monday, September 4, 2017 at 3:04 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, Ridin' Shotgun, photos, Pike, Gainesville, Perry, Castile.



There are those rare occasions where I am truly "riding shotgun" during my photo excursions. This latest post is one of them.

It all started with a flat tire and my need to go to the grocery store.

Needless to say, a text to a friend, a nice day, and almost two hours later, we finally made our way to the store. But not until after driving on a few unfamiliar, "limited maintenance" roads ridin' shotgun somewhere in East Wyoming County.







Monday, September 4, 2017 at 1:37 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Covington, Middlebury, Attica, Perry, Warsaw.
    Ronald C. Watson

Ronald C. Watson, 46, of Akron, was charged Aug. 26 with criminal obstruction breathing/blood circulation – by applying pressure, reckless endangerment in the second degree, assault in the third degree, and menacing in the third degree. Troopers responded to a 9-1-1 call from a resident on Transit Road in the Town of Middlebury for a bloody woman asking for help at the door. Watson is suspected of being involved in a violent domestic dispute in the Town of Covington. He is accused of punching his girlfriend in the face, pulling her hair, choking her, and pushing her out of a moving vehicle. He was arraigned in the Town of Covington, where he was released on his own recognizance. He is due in the Town of Covington Court Oct. 23.

Joseph A. Saraceni Jr., 21, of Batavia, was charged Aug. 28 with DWAI operating a vehicle impaired by drugs, operating a motor vehicle by an unlicensed driver, following too closely, and unsafe turn/failure to signal. Troopers say they saw Saraceni following a vehicle too closely. When they attempted to follow him, he allegedly made an abrupt turn without signaling. During the interview, troopers say Saraceni gave them an expired New York State driver’s license. While being interviewed, the suspect allegedly gave a list of medications that he was taking in which consist of a controlled substance. He was given field sobriety testing, then taken to the State Police barracks in Warsaw. Additionally, he was evaluated by a drug recognition expert thus garnering the above charges. He is due in the Town of Warsaw Court Sept. 11. Not only was Saraceni arrested for DWAI, he was also turned over to the Monroe County Sheriff’s department for an active probation warrant.

Robert E. Ezzo, 63, of Attica, was charged Aug. 27 with driving while intoxicated and moving from lane unsafely. Troopers say they responded to a report of a car off the road with the complainant and witness waiting for police to respond. The suspect was found at his home and give standardized field sobriety testing. He was then taken to the State Police barracks in Warsaw, where he allegedly blew a BAC of .12 percent. He is due in the Town of Bennington Court Sept. 11.

Jessica N. Cashday, 23, of Buffalo, was charged Aug. 27 with criminal possession of marijuana in the fourth degree and introducing contraband into a prison. Troopers say Cashday was a visitor at the Attica Correctional Facility in Attica when the Department of Correctional and Community Supervision (DOCCS) K9 alerted on her. Subsequently, she was questioned by Troopers and allegedly admitted to having marijuana. According to police, approximately 70.4 grams of marijuana was found. She was processed without incident and arraigned in the Town of Attica Court. She was put in Wyoming County Jail in lieu of $5,000 cash bail or $10,000 bond. She is due in the Town of Attica Court Sept. 11.

Friday, September 1, 2017 at 5:27 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Castile, Perry.

Henemias Hernades-Perez, 32, of Castile, was charged Aug. 29 with criminal mischief in the third degree and endangering the welfare of a child. Hernades-Perez is accused of throwing a large rock through a vehicle window in the Town of Castile. Deputies say, one adult and a child were in the car when the incident happened.  Additionally, it was reported that he threw a beer bottle at the side of the car as well. He was arrested and arraigned in the Town of Castile Court. He was put in the Wyoming County Jail in lieu of $5,000 cash bail. He was due in the Town of Castile Court today.

Michael Menz, 33, of Perry, was charged Aug. 29 with unlawful possession of marijuana. Menz was arrested following an investigation into a loud noise complaint in the Village of Perry. He is due in Perry Village Court Sept. 12.

Friday, September 1, 2017 at 4:07 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Attica, Arcade, Gainesville, Perry, Warsaw.

The following were in Wyoming County Court before Judge Michael Mohun Aug. 31.

Matthew Zakrzewski, who is accused of committing a crime in Attica, pled not guilty to assault in the second degree, a Class D felony; criminal mischief in the third degree, a Class E felony; and these charges as Class A misdemeanors -- criminal mischief in the fourth degree, menacing in the second degree, and criminal trespass in the second degree. A pre-plea hearing is scheduled Nov. 30.​

Darren Tingue Jr., who is accused of a crime in Arcade, had his case adjourned to Sept. 21 for motions.

Jose Serrano, who committed a crime in Arcade, pled guilty to two counts of criminal sale of a controlled substance in the third degree, a Class B felony. Sentencing is scheduled Nov. 30.

Ervin Delude Sr., who committed a crime in Gainesville, was sentenced to one-and-three-quarters to three-and-one-half years in prison on each count of two counts of aggravated family offense, a Class E felony as a second felony offender. The sentences are to run concurrently. He is also responsible for all fees and surcharges.

Gerald Keech, who committed a crime in Perry, pled guilty to grand larceny in the fourth degree, a Class E felony. Sentencing is scheduled Oct. 26. Keech is being held without bail in Wyoming County Jail.

Christopher King, who committed a crime in Warsaw, successfully completed interim probation. He was sentenced to three years probation on the reduced charge of conspiracy in the fifth degree, a misdemeanor. Restitution was paid in full.

Jeffrey Snyder II, who committed a crime in Wyoming County, had a violation of probation hearing set for Sept. 13. He is being held without bail in Wyoming County Jail.

Franklin Cook, who committed a crime in Wyoming County, admitted to a violation of probation. The case has been adjourned to Oct. 12.

Joelle Good, who committed a crime in Warsaw, had a violation of probation hearing set for Sept. 22.

Thursday, August 31, 2017 at 1:30 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, Perry, Silver Lake.
Event Date and Time: 
September 1, 2017 - 7:30pm

The Silver Lake Institute is holding an end of season fundraising concert the raise money for the Epworth Hall roof fund.

The Old Hippies will be performing at 7:30 p.m. Sept. 1 at the Hall on the corner of Chapman and Perry avenues.

Donations will be taken at the door.

Thursday, August 31, 2017 at 1:10 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Perry, Warsaw.
      Clifford Murch

A Perry man charged in the August 2016 rape of a child, pled guilty Thursday in Wyoming County Court.

Clifford Murch, 21, was charged Dec. 8 with rape in the second degree and endangering the welfare of a child under 17 years old. He was put in Wyoming County Jail on $20,000 cash bail.

Murch was accused of the crime following an investigation that took place late last summer. The then 20-year-old was on parole at the time the rape took place.

In February he pled not guilty to the charges and an order of protection was served. Bail was set again at $20,000 cash.

During his appearance in court Aug. 30, Murch pled guilty to rape in the second degree, a Class D felony.

Sentencing is scheduled Sept. 28.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017 at 2:16 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, crime, news, Attica, Arcade, Perry, Warsaw.

In a report dated Aug. 21 by New York Upstate, Wyoming County ranks fourth in the least crime-ridden counties in New York State. The county reports 797 violent and property crimes combined per 100,000 people. Nearby Allegany County boasts 11 fewer and Putnam County has the least number of violent/property crimes with 609.

According to information culled from the Crime in New York State 2015 Preliminary Data report, statewide crime per 100,000 people between 2006 and 2015 dropped 20.7 percent – from 2,475.7 to 1,964.1. Violent Crime dropped 13 percent – from 434.2 to 378 per 100,000, and property crime decreased 22.3 percent – from 2,041.5 to 1,586.1.

Wyoming County had a total of 1,032.2 crimes – 141.9 violent and 890.3 property – in 2015, per 100,000 people.

The report states that crime reached an all-time low in 2015 since statewide reporting began in 1975.

Nearby Genesee and Erie counties were counted in the top 25 most crime-ridden counties, with Genesee ranking 14 – 2,040.7 total crimes – 195.9 violent and 1,844.8 property, and Erie County coming in at the fifth most crime-ridden county with a total of 2,829.8 crimes, of which 410.8 are violent and 2,418.9 are property crimes.

Additionally, more than half of Western New York counties are ranked in the top 25 most crime-ridden counties in the state. Of the five counties listed including Erie and Genesee, Orleans (1,614.3 total crimes per 100,000 people) is the least crime ridden and Niagara County (2,778.2) ranks number one. Chautauqua came in at number eight with 2,515.5 total violent and property crimes per 100,000 people.

What makes Wyoming County one of the safest places in the state to live? Local law enforcement and the District Attorney’s office credit its community.

“First of all we live in a community with hard-working people who take pride in their families, property and their community as a whole,” said Wyoming County District Attorney Donald O’Geen. “Second, the one thing that stands out to me when you mention the other counties and their crime rates is that in Wyoming County we (the chiefs, sheriff, troopers, probation, and my staff) take the approach that we are all on the same team, so we generally are all pulling in the same direction.”

“I agree with District Attorney O'Geen with respect that our community here in Wyoming County is a very hard-working group of people who do take pride in their families, property and the community as a whole,” said Attica Police Chief Dean Hendershott. “The core values of the citizens in our county is amazing.”

The joint cooperation and investment into its communities are equally shared in all aspects of law enforcement throughout the county and beyond, officials say. The interagency communication, partnering and general idea of "let's get the job done" are paramount. 

“We have all but eliminated ‘turf’ issues among departments,” O’Geen said. “We embrace new ideas and technologies such a treatment courts, re-entry programs, body cameras, aggressive welfare fraud investigations, and a lean but highly efficient drug task force.”

“I believe the residents of Wyoming County believe in public safety and that it is a core function of government on every level, which in turn garnishes support at their respective legislature or boards,” said Wyoming County Sheriff Greg Rudolph. “Additionally, Wyoming County law enforcement agencies have the vast majority of their deputies, officers and troopers living here in their community. They have a vested interest and pride in serving and protecting the area where they grew up and where their children are being raised.”

Wyoming County finds itself leading on public safety issues, as opposed to following, says O’Geen. Additionally, the Board of Supervisors gives its full support to public safety issues.

“They recognize that public safety is one of the primary functions of government and they fully support a unified criminal justice system,” O’Geen said. “My perception is that our village governments take that same position.”

There is a combined total of 49 full-time and 32 part-time officers in Wyoming County, which includes law enforcement from the villages of Attica, Arcade, Perry, and Warsaw, and the Sheriff’s Office. Additionally, there are eight full-time and seven part-time employees in the Communications Division of the Sheriff’s Office, and 32 full-time and 11 part-time officers in the Jail Division. The numbers do not reflect the civilian clerks in the respective departments, nor the crossing guards.

“We also receive a lot of information and cooperation from our community, which in turn results in both deterrence and prosecution,” Rudolph said. “As Don mentioned, our law enforcement community has a team approach and worries more about doing the right things and doing a professional job than receiving credit. A perfect example is the Drug Task Force.”

With the heroin/opioid epidemic that is hitting all communities, even the rural ones, the Drug Task Force does its fair share in keeping the crime rate lower, officials say. Each law enforcement agency is represented on the task force, however, it is not a full-time position. 

“More time and funding needs to be put towards the task force to help mitigate the flow of illegal drugs into our communities that is poisoning our youth, our future, but also individuals, family members and parents,” Hendershott said. 

“As the sign in my office says, ‘It is amazing what you can accomplish if you don't care who gets the credit’ (Harry S. Truman). This is the common goal and purpose of law enforcement in Wyoming County. In my 27 years as a police officer I can't recall such cooperation, not only within the county but with the State, Federal and out of county law enforcement. Sept. 11 forged such relationships and cooperation.”

The District Attorney’s office continues to be highly aggressive with the most dangerous criminals by holding them accountable for their actions. The Office takes a strong stance against heroin dealers, burglars and domestic-violence perpetrators, which make a difference in keeping crime down, officials say.

“By holding them accountable, we are creating a culture where they know it will not be tolerated and in some cases that culture is driving criminals right out of the county,” O’Geen said. 

The jail runs a highly disciplined operation to ensure accountability, Rudolph says, but also boasts a school and 14 programs that range from religious to substance abuse rehab to parenting to assist in rehabilitation.

All law enforcement officials in the county agree, they approach every call as problem solvers, putting the community first.

“In light of the attacks against law enforcement officers around the country, the people of Wyoming County have been nothing but kind, cordial and extremely supportive of our mission and work,” Rudolph said. “As with any group of people, there is a 1-percent rule that does make our duties extremely difficult at times, however, the constant professionalism displayed by the men and women in law enforcement in our county provides for a safe result nearly every time.”

Tuesday, August 29, 2017 at 5:25 pm
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, events, history, Warsaw, Perry.



There is one situated neatly on a side road between a row of houses, another is found on the grounds of a Village Park, the third one is in close proximity to Silver Lake.

“A lot of us drive by museums and historical societies and think, ‘I’ll have to stop there someday’ and then you may not get to it,” said Wyoming County Historian Cindy Amrhein. “They don’t know the wonderful things they are missing. Our county has a fascinating history when you see how each town had a part in its creation.”

Amrhein is talking about the inaugural launch of the Eat Your Way Through History tour. Although Amrhein organized and is the “head chef” for the tours, it isn’t a fundraiser for the County Historian’s Office, but rather to benefit the museums and historical societies in the county – both financially and visibly.

The motivation behind the tour is to bring awareness to what the county has to offer from a historical perspective. This undertaking is/was set over the course of four blocks: one in June, the most recent one held Saturday, one in September, and the final one in October. There was also a “free block” during the Wyoming County Fair.

The first stop on Saturday’s tour was at the Seth M. Gates House on Perry Avenue in the Village of Warsaw.

Warsaw was founded in 1803 by Elizur Webster, says Historical Society member George Almeter. While nobody really knows why the town was named Warsaw, it was the first in the country to create the Liberty Party.

“The first Liberty Party started in 1839 in a church on South Main and Livingston streets,” Almeter said. “The Town had its own anti-slavery newspaper, which eventually moved to Perry, and it was part of the Underground Railroad at its height in 1853.”

The newspaper was made out of rags in 1838, which preserved the text allowing an almost pristine copy to be predominantly displayed in the museum/historical society. The society also houses a completely intact cloak worn by a soldier who fought in the Revolutionary War.

The idea behind the Eat Your Way Through History tour was one Amrhein was kind of thrown into when she first became a historian in 1997 for the Town of Alabama.

“The supervisor needed a historian right away for this Eat Your Way Through History tour the then Genesee County Historian, Sue Conklin, had planned,” Amrhein said. “So, in a week I whipped something together. My town was dessert. I did everything apples and talked about the apple dryer in Alabama in the late 1800s. In Genesee (County) we only did one tour a year, over several years.

“Since this is the 75th anniversary of the Wyoming County Historian’s office and our publication Historical Wyoming, I wanted to do it up big. So I thought ‘why not do a tour but on a grander scale?’ So I guess you could say it’s like the Eat Your Way Through History tour from 20 years ago, but on steroids – all the county’s museums in one year.”

All the dinnerware, napkins, and cups have the Eat Your Way Through History logo, and advertising for the event was made using modified ads from the 1950s. There are even passports, neck wallets to carry them in, trivia games, and gift bags.

However, before the bling was bought and the tour schedule set, Amrhein had to get the historians, the historical societies and the museums on board with the idea.

“Even though the plan wasn’t fully developed yet in my head, I tossed out the idea just to see if it was possible and if there was enough interest,” Amrhein said. “I wanted to try and include historians as well as historical societies even if they had no museum.”

For the tour, Laury Lakas, historian for Orangeville, teamed up with Sheldon Historical Society, which has a museum. Covington doesn’t have a museum but they have a historical society so they are holding the event at the old Town Hall. Additionally, there are two new museums without historical societies attached to them – Attica Preservation Foundation Museum in Attica, and the Perry Fire Department Museum in the Village Park in Perry (open Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.).

“Five or six years ago we needed a place to put the antique trucks,” said museum curator Robin Poydock. “Instead of selling the trucks, we built a building.”

In addition to storing the 1937 truck – with a V-12 engine and straight pipes – which the department had purchased new at the time, it also houses a truck from 1915, photos, speaking trumpets (similar to a megaphone) and various other department memorabilia.

“The photos were in storage in the basement of the fire department and we found a photo of our first chief holding one of the speaking trumpets,” Poydock said. “Before the department was organized in 1887 there were bucket brigades. And when the department first started, there was 24-hour coverage. The fire hall was also designated as a fallout/bomb shelter.”

To organize an event that spans the entire county took a bit of finagling, Amrhein says.

“First I had to see which of our museums or historical societies or historians were willing to play. Then I had to coordinate around events they already had planned or do every year at the same time. I also wanted the route to be in some order where they were all fairly close to each other and then guesstimate travel time from one location to the other.

“If possible, I tried to end them in a spot that would encourage further exploration. For example, the tour we just had ended at the Pioneer Cabin, which is a beautiful spot by Silver Lake. The one in October ends in Castile, and that is close to Letchworth State Park. For some towns it just wasn’t possible for them to participate, and Pike we did by using the county fair museums.”

The Pioneer Association began in 1872 with a picnic, says association member Bob Murphy who was the guide at the Pioneer Cabin on Walker Road in Perry. However, it wasn’t until about 25 years ago that the association got its artifacts back after being stored at Letchworth State Park.

Along with the cabin, the last running one-room schoolhouse in Wyoming County is on the property – the building was brought to Walker Road out of LaGrange, a 2,000-year-old “meeting” tree from Covington also sits in prominent display, and the museum boasts the history of the infamous Silver Lake Sea Serpent.

On July 13, 1855, Joe McKnight had this to say about the serpent: It looked like a giant log coming toward the boat. The thing was a reptile about 80 feet long with eyes as red as hot coals. The serpent lashed out its tail and water flew four feet into the sky.

As the story spread, more people said they saw the serpent. Tourists packed nearby hotels and homes to get a glimpse of the beast but it always escaped into the foam, the legend says. Then as quickly as it came to be, the “monster” disappeared, never to be seen again on Silver Lake.

“The truth was, A.B. Walker built the ‘serpent’ with friends to stir up business at his hotels,” Murphy said. “But the story is based on an Indian legend about a monster in the sea.”

Another fun fact about the serpent is that it was built three different times, says Murphy. The contraption was stored in three different buildings, all of which had burned down destroying the “monster” each time.

Susan B. Anthony had once visited the museum and Franklin D. Roosevelt had been a guest speaker at the Cabin in 1945.

“Each tour stop has been different than the one before it,” Amrhein said. “The collections, the history to tell, the food, it’s all so unique. Our tourists are having a great time.”

This project was funded, in part, by a grant through the Arts Council for Wyoming County.

“I couldn’t have done it without them,” Amrhein said. “They are how it was possible to pay for most of the advertising and the printing of the passports. The revenue from the passport sales is divided up between all the museums and historical societies that participated.”

The passports were printed by The Arc of Livingston and Wyoming at the Hilltop Printshop in Mount Morris.

While there are three spots still available for the fourth block of the tour in October, Amrhein said she is already busy planning next year’s excursion.

Next year, grant willing she says, it will be a more independent tour spanning six months to coincide with regular museum and historical society hours. Participants will still get passports and prizes, however, closer to 120 to 150 people can join in the fun. (Eat Your Way Through History had to limit the number of patrons due to spatial concerns at the facilities.)

“The more players, the more our museums and historical societies benefit. There will be clues at each museum…a treasure hunt of sorts,” Amrhein said. “I don’t want to give too much away now though, but it will be called A Treasure Hunt Through History.

This year, each block tour was $12 or all four blocks for $45.

“It’s been great fun and the museums are doing an awesome job,” Amrhein said. “I’m thankful our historical societies and museums have gone all out to make this event a success, and so far, the ones I’ve talked to are on board for next year. And who doesn’t like a treasure hunt, right?”

The Eat Your Way Through History project was made possible with funds from the Decentralization Program, a regrant program of the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature and administered by the Arts Council for Wyoming County.

For more information about the tours or the Historian’s Office call (585) 786-8818.











Tuesday, August 29, 2017 at 11:40 am
posted by Julia Ferrini in Wyoming County, announcements, Business, Perry, Castile, Warsaw, Arcade.

Information based on a press release:

Tompkins Bank of Castile has announced the results of the fourth and final round of its quarterly Community Minute Challege.

Friends of Letchworth State Park, the local fourth-round participant, was not chosen.

That honor went to Gilda’s Club Rochester. Each quarterly winner is awarded $2,500.

Gilda’s has been serving the Greater Rochester community since 1959, first as Cancer Action Inc., and then in 2000 as Gilda’s Club. Its mission is to create welcoming communities of no cost support to those living with cancer – men, women, teens and children – along with their families and friends.

The winning organization for each Community Minute Challenge is determined by public voting on the Tompkins Bank of Castile Facebook page. Visitors watch one-minute videos produced by participating nonprofits and then vote for their favorite.

The first-round and third-round winners were both in Wyoming County. Respectively, they were Going to the Dogs Rescue, Main Street, Perry, an organization dedicated to helping homeless pets find loving forever homes; and Community Action for Wyoming County, which seeks to improve the quality of life of all people they serve by focusing on their needs, and encouraging them to realize their goals and become self-sufficient.

The second-round winner was Arc of Genesee Orleans, a resource of choice for people with disabilities and their families in both Genesee and Orleans counties.

Other organizations that participated in round four included:

    • Delphi Drug and Alcohol Council Inc. (Monroe County)

    • Friends of the Richmond Memorial Library (Genesee County)

    • Genesee Cancer Assistance (Genesee County)

    • Geneseo Parish Outreach Center (Livingston County)                         

“As proud members of the communities where we operate, we’re thankful for the important services that are provided by not-for-profit organizations in our area,” said Bank of Castile President and CEO John McKenna. "We’re thrilled to be able to bring attention to their positive work.”

Launched in August 2016, the challenge has awarded $10,000 in funds to local not-for-profit organizations. The program has helped organizations with much-needed money, and has increased exposure within their communities. 

“Winning the Community Minute Challenge was a huge boost for our organization in multiple ways,” said Going to the Dogs Rescue President Melissa Nichols-Henchen. “The monetary prize went a long way in purchasing vaccines and microchips for community dogs, giving us the ability to provide some basic care for animals who might not have had it otherwise."

Likewise, Community Action of Wyoming County Executive Director Connie Kramer was also grateful.

“Like many non-profits, we are able to provide programs through grants and designated donations,” Kramer said. “Of course, we also have day-to-day expenses that allow us to deliver our programs, so we were thrilled to be selected as a winner and apply the prize towards our operating budget." 

Tompkins Bank of Castile is a community bank with 16 offices in the five-county Western New York region. Services include complete lines of consumer deposit accounts and loans, business accounts and loans, and leasing. In addition, insurance is offered through an affiliate company, Tompkins Insurance Agencies, Wealth management, trust and investment services are provided through Tompkins Financial Advisors. Further information about the bank is available at


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