Heimroth sentenced to max for Lockrow murders, state legislators debate cell phone recording in Senate chamber, Mohawk Hudson shelters displaced rats

Heimroth sentenced in Lockrow murders
State Supreme Court Justice Andrew Ceresia sentenced Jacob Heimroth on Tuesday to 50 years to life in prison for the murders of Allen and Maria Lockrow of Troy. "No mercy will be shown in this sentence," Ceresia said, imposing the maximum penalty, citing what he said was the "unspeakable and barbaric" nature of the crime. Prior to the sentencing the judge threw out a defense motion for a mistrial. Heimroth maintained his innocence, telling the court, "This whole incident is tragic however I refuse to take responsibility for something I played no part in." [TU][Record][News 10][WNYT]

NYS legislature returns
Wednesday marked the first day of the new legislative session. Among the first items taken up by the state senate , whether cell phones should be allowed to be used to record the goings on in the senate chambers. [NYT]

Climate Change protestors arrested
17 protestors calling on Andrew Cuomo to stand up to Donald Trump's denial of climate change were arrested outside the Executive Chambers on charges of disorderly conduct. [TU]

Clifton Park open space petitions
The Shenendehowa school district accepted 800 pages worth of petitions signed by more than 7,000 people who want to force a vote on the fate of 34 acres of wooded land that the district is trying to sell to a developer. [TU]

Missing
An Albany family is offering a reward to anyone who can provide them with valid information about the disappearance of 51-year-old Dariel Young, who disappeared in late October. [TU]

Shoplifting leads to police chase
Three men led police on a four hour foot chase after stealing $500 worth of meat and seafood from the Market Bistro in Colonie. [TU]

Barn fire
A West Sand Lake barn containing five tractors and a pick-up truck was destroyed by fire on Wednesday. [TU]

Second building to be torn down after Saratoga Fire
The building that housed Mio Posto restaurant in Saratoga will be torn down -- the second building to fall victim to a Thanksgiving morning fire on an historic corner of Putnam and Caroline Streets. [Gazette]

Niko DiNovo
Niko DiNovo, the teen who was badly burned when he was a passenger in a car that caught fire after running into Blessings Tavern, is recovering from a surgery on Wednesday that is the first step to necessary skin grafts. [TU]

More flash than substance
Chris Churchill on Andrew Cuomo's proposal to offer a tuition free state college education to students from families earning $125,000 or more a year. [TU+]

Obamacare in NY
Andrew Cuomo warned on Wednesday that repeal of the Affordable Care act could leave an estimated 2.7 million New Yorkers without health care coverage and have a $3.7 billion impact on the state budget. [TU]

Pedestrian safety
Albany and Schenectady are among 20 cities that will be part of a NYS DOT pedestrian safety campaign. [TU]

Power outages
High winds resulted in power outages for about 2,000 National Grid customers in Saratoga County overnight. [News 10]

Rats
The Mohawk Hudson Humane society is helping to care of 60 domesticated rats that were rescued from a hoarding situation in Western NY. [News 10][TWCN]

Dr. MedPot
A pair of Saratoga Springs entrepreneurs have launched a website that helps connect patients with doctors who are licensed to prescribe medical marijuana. [TU]

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Imagine if a mixed use development - apartments, townhouses, restaurants, offices, a park - were built on the Rensselaer riverfront, and people on both sides could go to work and go out in either Albany or Renss, just by walking to a gondola station? If people had reason to traverse the Hudson - in both directions - for a reason other than commuting or getting to/from the train station, a gondola could be an awesome (and financially self-sustaining) idea, that also cuts down on the need for parking. ...

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