Questions about investigation of Schenectady fire that killed four people, two shootings in Albany, an attempt to crack down on zombie properties, a game of thrones

From a Times Union article by Brendan Lyons about the investigation of the fire in Schenectady last year that killed a father and three children, and the recent release of the man originally accused of arson: "[A] Times Union review of the case, including interviews with witnesses, attorneys, investigators and law enforcement officials, raises questions about whether [Robert] Butler's arrest was the product of a hasty or misguided investigation in which police and federal agents disregarded leads about a second man who may have had a grudge against [the father, David] Terry." [TU]

Albany police say three people were injured -- one fatally -- in two separate shootings early Sunday, in West Hill (map) and the South End (block map). APD says an officer responding to the West Hill shooting found two people, ages 16 and 20, shot -- they were taken to the hospital and listed in stable condition. APD says the report of the South End shooting came in about 1.5 hours later -- officers found a man shot. He as transported to the hospital and pronounced dead. The anti gun violence org SNUG has rallies planned for both locations this week. [APD FB] [TU]

"Department sources" tell the Times Union that the Troy Police Department has given the FBI additional case files as the feds review allegations of police brutality. TPD chief John Tedesco says the city will be reviewing legal cases that include police officers in attempt to see if any patterns emerge. The city is currently facing a handful of potential lawsuits related to alleged police misbehavior. [TU] [TU] [TU]

Albany police say an officer, just recently graduated from the police academy, is credited with helping to save the life of a man by performing CPR last week. The officer, Luke Deer, is a former Marine who served in Iraq and Afghanistan. [APD FB] [TU]

A problem in Schenectady and many other cities: vacant houses left to drift by their former owners while the foreclosure process drags on and on -- state attorney general Eric Schneiderman recently described them as "zombie properties." [Daily Gazette] [Buffalo News]

A wine transporting business based in the Capital Region says it's holding off on a $2.5 million facility in western New York because of concern about the "at rest" legislation that's floating around the state capitol. [TU]

A Saratoga Springs assistant police chief says his department had no more than 58 full-time members last year -- down from 72 five years before. [TU]

State Police say two plow trucks were hit by vehicles on the Northway in Saratoga County Saturday in separate incidents -- in both cases the drivers of the vehicles were arrested for alleged DWI. From the State Police description of the first incident: "The plow truck had its hazard lights activated when Clemente ran into the plow blade, causing the roof of his pickup truck to be sheered off." [NYSP]

State Police say troopers found a man asleep at the wheel of a vehicle in Pittstown -- on a frozen pond. [NYSP]

The Rensselaer Fire Department says falling ice broke a gas meter off a house Monday afternoon. [TU]

Troy's planning commission has tabled the proposal for the new Stewart's in Lansingburgh. [Troy Record]

With IBM reconfiguring itself, there are questions about the future of the company's presence at the NanoCollege. [TU]

Potential candidates to replace Saratoga County DA Jim Murphy, who's running for county court judge, have started to line up -- though it's not clear if there'd be an election to replace Murphy if were elected judge. [Saratogian]

There are candidates ready to run for the 113th state Assembly seat -- the one recently vacated by Tony Jordan -- but no word on when or if there will be a special election. [Daily Gazette]

It looks like there will be a Democratic primary to pick a challenger to Hugh Farley for the state Senate seat he's held since 1977. [Daily Gazette]

The name for the planned residential conversion of the former Albany International complex on the Albany/Menands line: Prima Lofts -- a play on the name of the former AI subsidiary. [TU]

Headline of the day: Caroga Lake outhouse races a game of thrones. [Daily Gazette]

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