Police say kidnapping and car chase shooting were linked, crackdown planned for Alive at Five, new Spitzer details, badass of the week

Police say last week's multi-city kidnapping and the car-to-car shooting in Troy were all part of the same story -- a twisted, violent story like something out of 24 or a mob movie. Police say the woman abducted in Albany last week was tortured -- including the use of bleach and salt in her wounds -- in Troy as part of an attempt to extract information from her about a safe her brother allegedly stole. The brother then allegedly went to Troy to swap the safe for his sister, but not trusting the captors, police say he opened fire on them as they drove -- with the man's sister in the trunk of one of the cars -- through the streets of Troy. [TU] [Troy Record] [WNYT]

The City of Albany says it'll be cracking down on drunk people at this summer's Alive at Five concerts. Among the methods: the use of a sensor to test drinks -- and people -- for alcohol. [Troy Record] [TU]

Scores on state math tests given to grade school students were up statewide this year -- including local school districts. The results prompted the head of the state Board of Regents to ask if the test was too easy. [NYSED] [Daily Gazette] [TU]

State Senator Tom Duane, the sponsor of the Senate same-sex marriage bill, says the measure has enough votes to pass the state Senate. Senate majority leader Malcolm Smith says he doesn't think that's true -- and says he won't bring the bill to a vote if he thinks it will fail. [NYDN] [Buffalo News] [TU]

PCB levels in the Hudson have not spiked downriver of the dredging so far, according to the federal EPA. [TU]

Saratoga Springs finance commissioner Ken Ivins says the city's can cover its $3 million budget gap without cutting a "policeman, fireman or the people out plowing our roads and fixing our streets." Public safety commissioner Ron Kim -- who's running for mayor -- had said that budget cuts would force 33 police and fire layoffs. [Post-Star] [Saratogian]

An animal control officer in Rensselaer County is accused of illegally killing dogs -- and stealing farm equipment. [TU] [Troy Record]

One of the candidates running for Schenectady County sheriff is no longer a sworn police officer. [Daily Gazette]

Former Schenectady mayor Al Jurczynski is reportedly interested in the Schenectady School District job held until just recently by Steven Raucci, the now-former district employee who's accused of arson and terrorism. [Marv Cermak]

New details about the spitzering of Eliot Spitzer: apparently the former governor was a frequent customer of the Emperor's Club, used his own money and paid by money order. [NYT]

A Clifton Park therapist is trying to organize health professionals to provide free services to people who have lost their jobs. [Saratogian]

Schenectady County is looking to name a poet laureate. [TU]

Badass of the week: Glens Falls ER doc Douglas Girling. The extreme marathoner is either extraordinarily badass... or crazy. [TU]


>>Alive at 5--city police will roam the crowd with special devices that can detect intoxication and tell whether non-alcoholic drinks have been spiked with alcohol.

WHAT!? ::drinking doesnt kill people, drinking and driving kills people:: jesus. i cant wait until they come near me with that "detection device." i'll give them something to detect, for sure. if you roam the crowd and find that i'm intoxicated, that has nothing to do with whether i'm going to pose a risk to others in a motor vehicle. that issue comes down to personal discretion and responsibility. people drinking and/or getting drunk on the lawn isnt the problem, it's the people who decide to drive drunk that is the problem.

"Among the methods: the use of a sensor to test drinks -- and people -- for alcohol."

At first that sounded like some sort of sensor that they can just walk through the crowd detecting drunks, like a metal detector. In fact it's just a simpler breathalyzer test that can be done quickly without requiring the suspect to blow. The suspect need only speak into it. If it comes back positive then the regular breathalyzer test would be performed. I'm not sure what the point of wandering through the crowds making people do this is, nor how it is supposed to prevent drunk driving.

aren't we supposed to be responsible for our own well being? the last thing I need is a guy telling me I'm drunk, I'd probably just thank for for letting me know I've achieved the desired result.
I used to volunteer there as a server, until my fringe benefits of drinking on the job became monitored, I thought if I'm doing this for free, then Jerry can at least let me have a few beers, now thats not even cool.

>>Officers -- both in uniform and plain clothes -- will watch the crowd and use their judgment and training to evaluate revelers' behavior.

wait, if you kick an officer in plain clothes, does it still count as "assaulting an officer?" hehe.

A few selfish idiots who decide to get behind the wheel after getting drunk are ruining Alive at Five for all of us "green drunks" (those who walk/take the bus to and from area of consumption)

Consider the safety of others, yourself and the environment: DON'T DRIVE TO ALIVE AT FIVE!

This is typical nanny state rules that hinder people who follow the law. Last year a large number of people were caught during a DWI campaign after LIVE @ 5 so instead of planning more and letting the word get out there, everyone is punished. Similar to the Mayor's lame excuse to sell beer and bar concert goers from bringing there own. Why not have a couple of plainclothes police ID'ing drinkers and making arrests or issuing tickets (the word would get out to underagers to stop drinking there)? Probably because it makes sense oh yeah and the city would not make money by having vendors sell beer.

Christ, after our apparent agreement to disagree on the Price Chopper post, I now find myself agreeing with NyNY. Why in God's name do we need Big Brother wandering Alive at Five to perform breathalyzers on citizens? Look, I can't stand the drunken masses peeing in the streets after the St. Patty's parade or after the mess they made at the Tulip Festival, but having the cops pull out street-level breathalyzers on non-driving party-goers is another thing entirely. Sure, go ahead and buy beer from the city (and certainly don't bring your own), and then we'll harass you for drinking it. Makes perfect sense, don't you think?

well at least they didn't ban beer altogether like they threatened to last year. They would have had to deal with a full-fledged riot if they tried a crazy stunt like that.

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