Body found in Mohawk, pawn shop tips lead police to suspects in church robbery, Albany man charged in $2 million California real estate scheme, woman charged with animal cruelty after dog dies in hot car, Sweeney shares the tale of his spiral with addicts

The Saratoga County Sheriff's office is looking into the discovery of a body in the Mohawk River near the Rexford Bridge on Wednesday.[TU]

Tips from pawn shops in Albany and New Haven Connecticut helped lead police to two suspects in the theft of silver from St. John's Episcopal Church last weekend. One of the men charged in the crime is also accused of robbing Glennpeter Jewelers in Colonie.[TU] [WNYT]

Schenectady police are reviewing surveillance footage in an effort to find the person who stabbed a man in the chest at the corner of State and Hulett streets on Wednesday night. [TU]

Albany police arrested a city man wanted in California for his alleged involvement in a more than $2 million real estate scam. [APD] (Press Release below)

The State senate voted overwhelmingly to legalize Mixed Martial Arts in New York, The bill now goes to the Assembly, where MMA legislation has met with opposition before. [Fox 23] [TU]

Democratic leaders held a public forum on a proposal to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $8.50 in 2013 and another $0.75 the following year. A recent YNN Marist Poll shows 72% of adults support raising the minimum wage. [Fox 23] [YNN]

Three lanes of the Northway were closed yesterday when a tractor trailer filled with crushed cars overturned near the Twin Bridges, spilling scrap metal across the median.[TU]

More than 30 commercial properties in Troy will be showcased in a joint open house in May, with an eye toward attracting new businesses to the spaces. [Record]

State Senator Neil Breslin is expected to kick of f his reelection campaign later today. [Record]

John Sweeney shared the story of his fall from power to alcoholism and jail with a group of recovering addicts graduating from a four month rehab program in an Albany courtroom.[TU]

Albany police are looking for the people who tried to scam an elderly city man out of
$3000 by telling him his grandson was arrested while volunteering for the Red Cross in Haiti and needed bail money. [APD] (Press Release below)

Saratoga County officials are projecting that they'll end the 2012 fiscal year more than $3 million ahead of where they thought they'd be. [Post Star]

Schenectady's proposed school budget calls for the elimination of 48 staff positions and the closure of Oneida Midle School. [YNN]

The former Alco industrial site on Erie Boulevard in Schenectady will house a multistory hotel and upscale riverfront apartment complex.[Gazette]

The EPA is expected to release its review of the first two years of Hudson river dredging next week as crews are preparing for a third season of cleaning up the site. The report was due by the end of this month, but federal officials extended the study through May so congress and environmentalists could get a better look. [TU] [WNYT]

The newest chapter in the Saratoga Springs Housing Authority saga: The city accounts commissioner is questioning why Housing Authority Executive Director Ed Spychalski had city vehicles serviced at his brother's repair shop in Watervliet. Accounts Commissioner John Franck is also asking the Housing Authority to provide the salaries of all its employees for the last twelve years. [Saratogian] [Gazette]

The infant who was severely injured and sexually assaulted in March has been released from Albany Medical Center and placed in foster care. The ex-boyfriend of the child's mother is facing nine counts of physical and sexual assault in the case.[Post Star]

Students in schools around the area are taking state standardized tests in English language arts and math this week -- the results of which can now have a direct effect on the careers of their teachers and principals. [TU]

Much to the chagrin of Walgreens, the big W at Western Avenue does, in fact, constitute a sign, according to Guilderland's zoning board of appeals.[TU]

A Warren County woman is facing animal cruelty charges after one of the dogs she left in a hot car in a hospital parking lot on Monday died. [WNYT]

Pending state legislating could make stealing someone's family pet a felony, punishable by up to four years in prison.[News 10]

The TU Center is bidding to bring the ECAC Hockey tournament back to Albany. [YNN]

Proctors and the Schenectady YMCA are planning a babysitting program for kids whose parents want to see some of the Broadway touring shows but can't get child care. [Gazette]

High end SPAC members will soon have access to a Patrons Terrace near the Charlie Springs Gate, which will include complimentary beer, wine and for d'oeuvres donated by local purveyors.[Gazette]

A local man found out that if you gift money to New York State, you can't attach conditions for how you want it spent. [TU]

A Schalmont Middle School student is one of 15 winners in a National Geographic Hands on Explorers Challenge essay contest. Eleven year old Ed Jamison will hike through Glacier National Park in Montana, tracing the path of Lewis and Clarc and participating in an archeological dig.[Gazette]

APD Press Release Real Estate Scheme

Albany detectives, along with the U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force, arrested a 26 year old Albany man this morning who was wanted out of Los Angeles County, California, for stealing over two million dollars.

Andres Victoria, of Weis Road, was picked up at his home around 6:30 a.m. He one of nine defendants who was wanted by Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department for a real estate scheme that began in 2007. The other eight defendants in the scheme were all arrested in Los Angeles since earlier this month.

Between October, 2007 and June , 2009, Victoria , who worked for Bank of America, is alleged to have defrauded CitiMortgage and MetLife Bank out of $2.3 million by way of a fraudulent mortgage loan scheme. Victoria and the other eight suspects are alleged to have acted as straw buyers, while providing stolen identities, false bank account verifications, and false employment information.

Victoria was remanded to the Albany County Jail and is awaiting extradition to California.

He will be charged with six counts of Grand Theft, two counts of Identity Theft, 12 counts of Offering a False Instrument, and four counts of Forgery under California law when he returns.


APD Press Release -Phone Scam

Albany police are investigating an apparent phone scam in which the caller claims to work for The American Red Cross.

A man called an elderly Linden Road resident yesterday afternoon and claimed to be his grandson. The caller then went on to say that he worked for the American Red Cross and was currently working in Haiti. He told the man that the car he and his friends were in was stopped by the Haitian Police and that they were arrested. He requested $3,275 be sent to him in order for the case to be heard quickly.

The man became suspicious and hung up. He called members of his family and realized that this was an attempted scam.

The Albany Police would like to remind people of the following safety tip in regards to phone scams:

· Do not give out personal, credit, or banking information to someone that calls you
· Be aware of high pressure techniques, such as need to give information on the spot.
· If an offer seems too good to be true, it most likely is. People do not win free money from the government without applying for grants and people do not win the lottery if they have not entered it.
· Call the police is you believe someone is attempting to defraud you.


It's underneath a big W, I tell ya!

So, the dog that happened to survive the car inferno was treated and given back to its owners? Please tell me it was drawing of a dog or a stuffed Scooby doo doll and not a living breathing creature.

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