Things get weird in Troy murder trial, talking with new Common Council members, video game makers call for tax breaks

Veterans Day is Saturday, but the federal observed holiday is Friday.

Trial in the death of Noel Alkaramla
+ Things got weird(er) Thursday in the trial of Johnny Oquendo for the death of Noel Alkaramla. Oquendo's attorney asked a prosecution witness -- who knew both Oquendo and Alkaramla -- if she and Oquendo had broken up because she had sex with a dog. The defense then alluded to mobile phone video and photos, the woman said any photos were made after they broke up, and the Oquendo's attorney asked if she needed to see the videos to refresh her memory -- and after a recess -- she ended up taking the 5th. [TU] [Troy Record]
+ Probably more important to the case is the issue of whether some DNA evidence will be allowed. (Geoff Redick has been posting detailed updates of the trial -- along with some explanations about procedure -- on Twitter.) [Spectrum] [@geoffredick]

AG review of Rensselaer County DA
It sounds like the state Attorney General's grand jury review of the Rensselaer County DA's handling of the fatal shooting of Edson Thevenin by Troy police is comparing that case with an earlier case that involved a much longer investigation. [TU]

CDPHP small business in-post-ad 2017-September

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Local sheriffs departments and ICE
A look at the federal immigrant enforcement program that both the Albany and Renssealer county sheriffs departments applied to be a part of -- and Albany County has since pulled its application because of pushback. [The Alt]

Guilty plea from teacher's assistant
A 24-year-old former teacher's assistant has pleaded guilty to a third-degree criminal sexual act, a felony, for having sexual contact with a 15-year-old student -- she faces up to six months in jail. [Daily Gazette]

Guilty plea for making do drink beer
An Albany man pleaded guilty to misdemeanor animal cruelty for making his dog drink beer -- an act captured by a CDTA camera and reported by a bus driver. (The dog is super cute and will be up for adoption.) [News10] [@Anyaon10]

Pulled to safety
The Albany County Sheriff is hailing a deputy for pulling two people to safety at Thacher Park. [News10]

Albany Common Council
Talking with new members of the Albany Common Council, which will be 50 percent people of color when the new term starts January 1. [TU]

Stockade flooding prevention
The feds have released $1.2 million for flood mitigation studies in the Stockade. [Daily Gazette]

I-890 pedestrian bridges
The cost of rehabbing the pedestrian bridges over I-890 that link the GE campus to downtown Schenectady is estimated to be $3 million -- even just removing them would cost $1.3 million. [Daily Gazette]

Foiling FOIL
Detailing the many frustration citizens and the media face when trying to use the Freedom of Information Law to get public info. [WNYT]

Saratoga County economic development
Reviewing the performance of the competing economic development orgs in Saratoga County. [TU]

Tax credits for video game makers?
Troy and Menands have become a hot spot for video game developers -- but companies say state tax breaks are necessary to continue to grow the industry here. They cite tax break competition from places such as as Austin and Montreal. [TU] [Biz Review]

CommerceHub
Commerce Hub -- the big online shopping logistics company based at the SUNY Poly campus in Albany -- says it's consolidating its operations and will be moving some of its Seattle-based engineers to Albany. [Biz Review]

State funding sought for Saratoga Diner site
The developers looking to build a mixed-use project that includes "workforce" housing at the Saratoga Diner site are looking for $10 million in state funding. [Saratogian]

Ticks
Even though the cold weather has returned, ticks are still active. [WNYT]

The writerly life
Following along with an author who stopped into a Schenectady middle school this week to inspire kids to be party of "the writerly life." [Daily Gazette]

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