Examining the context of Albany's rash of violence, fired Home Depot employee passes on job re-offer, state's bill for food truck fight, Grandma's is set to re-open

Recent rash of violence in Albany
+ Amanda Fries and a group of Times Union reporters looked at the 16 homicides in Albany over the last 19 months -- six are currently unsolved -- and talked with local law enforcement officials and experts about the patterns and context associated with the deaths. [TU]
+ Albany County DA David Soares on the recent uptick in violence in the city: "One of the things that we're also seeing that I will tell you is of concern to me is that an individual can be shot in the presence of 25 people and yet, no one knows or sees anything." Also: ""We have the means and the ability to move people and to protect the identification of people who come forward with information." [WNYT] [TU]
+ A group called Albany Concerned Citizens led a peace walk through the South End Sunday. [WNYT] [Spectrum]

Maurice Rucker
After the outpouring of public support for Maurice Rucker -- the employee at the Albany Home Depot fired after he stood up to a racist customer instead of calling for a manager -- the chain has offered him his job back. He's not accepting it: "I personally felt it was kind of disingenuous." He says he's gotten multiple job offers and has an interview Albany County exec Dan McCoy this week. [TU] [Spectrum] [TU]

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Sentencing in death of Albany baby
The man convicted of causing the death of one-year-old Luka Patrick in 2017 was sentenced to 25 years in prison. [TU]

Central Ave crash
Colonie police say a Schenectady man crashed into an officer's vehicle after being pursued by another officer for speeding. He's been charged with driving while impaired by drugs and other charges. [Spectrum] [TU]

Drugged driving
Determining the extent of a driver's intoxication by drugs isn't as simple as a breath test, and with legalized recreational marijuana possibly on the way, that could increase the role of officers that law enforcement agencies say are specially trained to recognized intoxication by drugs. [TU]

Dispute over recording State Police encounter in Saratoga Springs
A Schodack woman says a state trooper knocked a phone out of her hand for trying to record the episode following a crash in Saratoga Springs after a concert at SPAC. [TU]

Sheldon from the help desk
Sheldon Silver's attorneys are proposing that the sentence for public corruption conviction be community service working on a help desk assisting people trying "navigate their way through the state bureaucracy." [NYT]

State elections
+ Jimmy Vielkind considers whether the convictions of Joe Percoco and Alain Kaloyeros will have an effect on voter support of Andrew Cuomo this fall. [Politico NY]
+ Neil Golub contributed $11k to Michelle Ostrelich, the Democrat challenging Jim Tedisco for the state Senate. [Daily Gazette]

Wandering Dago fight with the state
New York State will be paying the Wandering Dago $325k for legal fees racked up during the fight over whether the food truck should be allowed to vend at the ESP because of its name. [TU]

No gun show at Schenectady Armory
The owner of the Schenectady Armory says the operator of the long running gun show in Saratoga Springs will not be holding a gun show at his venue after all. [Daily Gazette]

Proposed Albany County residential sprinkler law
A builder says proposed Albany County legislation that would require sprinklers in new one- and two-family homes built in the county would increase costs $8k-$10k per home, and might prompt him to no longer build in the county. [Biz Review]

High Peaks
An overview of the new state plan approved for the High Peaks. [TU]

International workers
Local frustration over the visa lottery system for seasonal workers and visa delays for performers. [TU x2]

Jay St. Video Games turns away customer wearing swastika shirt
Jay St. Video Games at Crossgates turned away a customer wearing a swastika shirt Friday afternoon. A Facebook post about it then prompted widespread attention online. [WNYT] [TU]

Niskayuna town historian
The appointment of a new Niskayuna town historian prompted a complaint from a town board member about not having input for the $500 per year job. [Daily Gazette]

Food waste
A look at some local initiatives trying to combat food waste. [TU]

Grandma's
The owner of La Fiesta is set to re-open Grandma's Pies. [TU]

Stuff going on today

Bites Camera Action RESCHEDULED TO AUGUST 20
Monday: The Bites Camera Action outdoor movie series in downtown Albany will be showing Jumanji: Welcome to the Jungle. The movie will be on the big video screens outside the TU Center. South Pearl will be closed from Beaver to Hudson starting at 6:30 pm. And Youth FX films will be screened at 7 pm. Monday 7:30 pm -- free

Summer Writers Institute
This is the last week of the NYS Summer Writers Institute's open-to-the-public readings by authors at Skidmore. Monday will feature William Kennedy and non-fictionist Jim Miller (author Democracy Is In The Streets, Flowers in the Dustbin). The events are in Palamountain Hall at Skidmore. Monday 8 pm -- free

Comments

"talked with local lawn enforcement officials,"
good to see that local lawns are kempt.

Editors: Fixed. Thank you.

I think it's terrible that 6 of the most recent 16 murders in Albany are unsolved, and worse that it is affecting a certain segment of the population. I'm a little bothered though that proposed solutions normally involve more money, less policing, and greater government oversight (forcing corner stores to close). How can police solve murders when they show up to find out that no one saw nothing, no one knows anything, no one heard anything, and no one wants to talk? Cooperation and the culture of a community can play a huge role in solving crimes, two things that require no money and no government oversight to deal with.

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