Occupy Albany's permit expires, police say grandmother sold presents for crack, gym employee accused of groping teen, meatball sub involved in pizzeria fight

Occupy Albany's permit allowing it stay overnight in Academy Park expired this morning. But the the group says it's planning to keep a 24/7 presence in the park -- and for the moment it doesn't appear the city will be booting them. [YNN] [Fox23] [TU]

Documents filed by the prosecution in the Troy voter fraud case includes evidence that suggests the absentee ballots of 49 voters were altered. [TU]

The plea deal offered to the owner of the two dogs that mauled a Schenectady woman in August includes jail time. [TU] [Daily Gazette]

The state Racing and Wagering Board ordered NYRA to refund overcharges it made to bettors on some "exotic" bets. NYRA says the $8.6 million in overcharges were an "unintentional oversight." [Saratogian] [TU]

Bryan Ashline, the Watervliet man convicted of killing his infant son and former girlfriend in Steuben County last year, was sentenced to life without parole. [TU]

Rensselaer County exec Kathy Jimino is upset about one-time raises given to given to a group of county employees by the county legislature. [Troy Record]

The Saratoga Springs Housing Authority says it's hired an entomologist to help it deal with the bed bug problem at the Stonequist Apartments. A city council member expressed concerns that the problem at the apartments is "considerably worse" than the authority has described. [TU] [Saratogian]

Schenectady's planning commission has approved the design of the new building that replace Odd Fellows hall downtown. [Daily Gazette]

Albany police say a grandmother stole her grandson's Christmas presents and sold them for crack. The gifts ended up being recovered. Says an addiction expert of the situation: "This isn't a recreational addict. Certainly this is a desperate human being doing desperate things." [YNN] [CBS6] [WNYT]

State police say a mother-daughter duo were arrested for allegedly burglarizing five different homes in Schenectady County. The duo has already served time for burglary. [Fox23] [TU]

Colonie police say an employee of the Planet Fitness on Albany Shaker allegedly showed the boy nude photos of her in-progress sex change. [WTEN] [WNYT]

Albany police say a pedestrian was seriously injured during a hit-and-run with a vehicle on upper Washington Ave early this morning (map). [APD press release]

Albany police say two teens were arrested yesterday for allegedly shooting a postal carrier in the leg with a BB gun in downtown Albany (map). The APD says the teens are suspects in similar recent incidents in north Albany. [APD press release]

Saratoga Springs police say the man accused of locking up an employee while robbing the Tin & Lint early Wednesday told them: "I got drunk and did something stupid." [TU] [Saratogian]

A "brawl" reportedly broke out a the Schenectady fire fighters holiday party a the Van Dyck. [Daily Gazette]

Gun sales are apparently up this holiday season. [YNN]

Results on the so far un-snowy winter: full highway salt sheds and bare ski slopes. [Daily Gazette] [TU]

Farther afield (and out there): police say two men in Lake Luzerne tried to steal a sign from rival pizzeria following a fight that involved a hurled meatball sub. [Post-Star]


APD: Hit and run

Albany police are investigating a hit and run accident on Washington Avenue early this morning that left the victim in critical condition at Albany Medical Center.

Phillip Lawrence, 50, was apparently walking in the roadway near Winthrop Avenue when he was struck by a car which then fled the accident scene. Lawrence sustained a broken hip, bleeding on the brain and internal injuries.

At this time there are no witnesses to the accident.

Based on the accident investigation the vehicle involved might be a early 90's Dodge Dakota pickup truck.

Anyone with information should contact the Traffic Safety Division at 462-6593.


APD: BB gun shooting

Albany police arrested two Albany teens yesterday afternoon for shooting a postal carrier in the leg with a BB gun.

Nicholas McGraw, 18, and Joshua Weldon, 19, were arrested yesterday and charged with Assault 2nd after they pulled up in a minivan to Dennis Lanahan at Madison Avenue and South Pearl Street and shot him in the leg.

McGraw, of 354 Elk Street and Weldon, of 207 Sherman Street, fled the scene in the minivan but were pulled over by Officer Steve Smith at Elk Street and Quail Street at 11:45 a.m. when the officer spotted the vehicle matching the description involved in the shooting.

McGraw and Weldon were arrested at the scene and a BB gun was found inside the van.

McGraw and Weldon were arraigned yesterday afternoon in Albany City Criminal Court.

Lanahan, 42, sustained a welt and contusion of the back of his leg.

McGraw and Weldon are considered suspects in two BB gun shootings on Tuesday night in North Albany.

The first incident occurred in front of 12 Albany Street at 8:51 p.m. The victim, Mark Jurlando, 57, told officers he was in front of his house when a maroon minivan pulled up next to him and a individual inside the van fired a bb or pellet gun at him striking him in the right eye. The minivan sped off in a unknown direction.

Jurlando sustained bleeding to his eye and was taken to Albany Medical Center for treatment.

Approximately eight minutes later the same minivan pulled up to another man on Northern Boulevard and Shaker Road and fired at him striking him in the face.

James Tifft, 30, of Second Street, told officers he was walking with a friend when the van pulled up and a white male wearing a long sleeve red shirt shot at him hitting him in the face. He sustained bruising and bleeding to his chin. He walked to Memorial Hospital and was treated and released.


What's with the weird local news in the past few days? Is there something in our water? Next, we'll see a story about a mother-daughter duo taking a bite out of a stolen burrito while fleeing a holiday party brawl.

NYRA rips people off to the tune of $8.6 million and we're supposed to believe it was an oversight?

I despise the racing industry and refuse to understand why our state continues to dump money into it. It's a hobby for the wealthy and whatever jobs/tourism it creates in Saratoga isn't worth the continued financial drain.

We have so many financial problems in this state - we need to stop propping up this BS industry and let it die already. WHY have New York State taxpayers paid $130 million in state grants and loans in NYRA since 2008? This needs to stop NOW.

I like how in the grandma selling presents for crack story that they mention that the son pointed out the "drug house" where the grandma went to buy the crack. And the toys were found there and returned.

The woman was arrested. There is no mention of the police arresting the people who sold the drugs or who lived in the "drug house".

Which seems pretty standard in Albany. They know where people are selling drugs. They just don't do anything about it.

If they did arrest them there'd be a bunch of bleeding hearts on here saying they are oppressed minorities abused by the system...

So the albany cops don't do their job because of some bleeding hearts commenting on some blog?

If you say so.

No but there'd be a bunch of them (along with the wonderful DA Soares no doubt) marching and trying to occupy your front lawn.

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