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WACK News Update

In The News

Friday, August 28th, 2015


A suspect was taken into custody, Thursday, in the drive-by shooting in Rochester, last week, that claimed the life of three people and injured four others.

Rochester Police Chief Michael Ciminelli said the suspect is currently being held following the August 19th mass shooting on Genesee Street. The suspect is being held on a different charge, but the Chief added that a charge related to the mass shooting is forthcoming. With one suspect is in custody, one firearm, and the car used in the shooting, the RPD is now offering $25,000 for information that might lead to an arrest.

Thursday, Rochester’s Mayor, Lovely Warren, attended the funeral of Johnny Johnson, one of the three young men killed during the August 19th shooting on Genesee Street.


A Steuben County teenager was killed Tuesday night when the bicycle he was riding was struck by a car.

State Police say the crash happened at about 6:20 p.m. at the intersection of County Route 1 and Crane Road in the town of Thurston. Troopers say 17 year old Jonathan Ballance, of Campbell, did not stop at a stop sign and was struck by a vehicle.

Ballance was pronounced dead at Corning Hospital. The driver of the car was not identified and no charges were filed.


A 21 year old Ithaca man faces multiple charges after allegedly fleeing from police on a motorcycle.

Benjamin Neilsen is accused of taking off from State Police after they attempted to pull him over on Route 13 for having an expired registration. After a short pursuit, Neilsen was caught on Route 38 in Cortlandville. Neilsen was found to be driving on a suspended license and to be in posession of a small amount of cocaine.

Following his arraignment, Neilsen was sent to Tompkins County Jail in lieu of bail.


Ontario County Sheriff’s deputies armed with an arrest warrant took a Stanley woman into custody upon her release from F.F. Thompson Hospital in Canandaigua early Thursday morning in connection with a case involving a tragic accident at an intersection where numerous crashes have occurred.

Deputies say 52 year-old Maria Chiarilli was arrested after failing to appear in court on a charge of vehicular manslaughter in the second degree. Chiarilli was involved in a two vehicle crash last December 31 that took the life of 70 year-old Walter Warner of Clifton Springs. She was allegedly driving under the influence of drugs when her van struck Warner’s pick-up truck after she ran a stop sign at the intersection of County Road 4 and County Road 20 in the town of Seneca. Warner died of internal injuries at Geneva General Hospital.

The District Attorney’s office filed the vehicular manslaughter charge after reviewing the case. She was initially charged with driving while ability impaired by drugs. Chiarilli is being held at the Ontario County Jail pending her appearance in court.


Two people, one of them an East Rochester police officer, are recovering after a crash on Route 31-F Wednesday night.

It happened just before midnight, when police said the officer was on his way to another scene with his sirens and lights on. Police said that’s when the driver of the other vehicle, Daniel Strassner, exited Rt. 490 and crashed into the police cruiser. Both men were trapped for nearly an hour and are being treated for broken bones. They’re expected to recover.

Police said alcohol was not a factor in the crash. Strassner was issued several tickets. The officer was released from the hospital Thursday afternoon and is home with his family.


Six adults and two infants are safe after an apartment building fire in Attica Thursday.

Firefighters arrived on scene to find smoke pouring from the second floor and a female tenant on the porch yelling for help. The woman was rescued and taken to the hospital to be checked out for injuries and to be given a mental health evaluation. Investigators have labeled the fire as “suspicious.”


New York State Police in Steuben County need the public’s help to identify a woman who they are accusing of stealing from a local farm stand.

The alleged theft happened at the Stoney Acre Farms Produce Stand in Bath. Surveillance cameras caught the woman loading multiple grocery bags into her car after walking away from the stand.

Anyone with information can call New York State Police at (607) 776-2183.


Transferring between SUNY schools has gotten easier. A new seamless transition policy guarantees that students will be able to transfer credits between all SUNT campuses. The hope is that it will help more students graduate on time and acquire less deft along the way.

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