Cops arrest six in Sidney narcotics bust; find drugs, cash and $7,000 in pure silver

Photos via the Delaware County Sheriff's Office.

A months-long investigation into heroin, cocaine and prescription drug dealing in the Delaware County town of Sidney led to six arrests and the recovery of a trove of cash, drugs and $7,000 in pure silver on Friday, Oct. 17, according to a press release from the Delaware County Sheriff's Office.

Police obtained grand jury indictments for five people in the Sidney area, charging them with selling controlled substances in the town and village of Sidney between June and Oct. 2014.

On Friday afternoon, armed with a search warrant and an indictment charging Gabriel V. Bonacci with selling heroin in Sidney on two occasions in July, police raided Bonacci's house on County Highway 23 in the town of Sidney. Bonacci has a prior drug conviction from 1998, according to the press release.  Read more

State trooper not fooled by counterfeit bills in Wal-Mart parking lot

Two SUNY Delhi students were caught while attempting to use counterfeit $10 bills to buy tire rims from an off-duty New York State Police trooper on Thursday, Oct. 16, according to a press release from the New York State Police.

Left: Brian Colon and Nicole Nunez. Photo via the New York State Police. 

Brian Colon, an 18-year-old from the Bronx, and Nicole Nunez, his 18-year-old girlfriend from Manhattan, were reportedly arrested after contacting the off-duty trooper through Craigslist.org, and then meeting him in the parking lot of the Wal-Mart in Oneonta to finalize the sale.

Colon reportedly paid the trooper $700 for four tire rims with 70 counterfeit $10 bills. Police say that Nunez knowingly possessed several more counterfeit $10 bills.  Read more

Police: Knife-wielding driver held passenger hostage before crashing on Route 28

A 22-year-old Monroe man driving on Route 28 through the Delaware County towns of Bovina and Delhi held his passenger hostage with a knife before she grabbed the wheel and crashed the car on the morning of Thursday, Oct. 16, according to Delaware County Undersheriff Craig DuMond.

Left: James D. Garcia. Photo via the Delaware County Sheriff's Office. 

James D. Garcia and his girlfriend got into a domestic dispute in his car while driving south through Delh, DuMond saidi. Garcia threatened the woman with a knife as they drove.

The women secretly called 911 on her cell phone, had a short conversation with the dispatcher, and then Garcia threw the phone on the floor of the car in an attempt to end the call. The phone stayed on as the couple drove on, the altercation escalating as they did so.   Read more

Fall blazes in the Schoharie Valley

Photographer Caleb Jacobus took these photographs of the blazing fall colors in the Schoharie Valley this morning, Friday, Oct. 17.

He was hiking on the cliffs in the town of Middleburgh, looking out towards Vroman's Nose and the Catskills. Below, there is a shot of the trail.

Caleb says that the colors of the shots are enhanced slightly by a filter on his camera, but are otherwise unaltered.  Read more

New York Times' "Living City" explores NYC's water supply

Up here in the Catskills, in the heart of New York City's vast rural watershed, it's impossible to forget that one lives in the middle of the city's water supply. The city's huge reservoirs dominate the landscape. Watershed affairs dominate local politics. New York City's watershed police patrol along sleepy back roads a hundred miles from Manhattan.

For most downstate New Yorkers, though, water is just a thing that comes out of the tap. This week, the New York Times introduced its readers to their astonishing water system in "Living City," a video series that explores some of the wonders of urban engineering that make life in our nation's largest city possible.  Read more

Don't tread on me (or my lawn)

Photo by Flickr user Timothy Allen

On Monday, Oct. 13, the citizens of the Delaware County town of Walton rose up in opposition to a proposed law that would have capped the height of grass and weeds in the town to ten inches, according to the Walton Reporter

The proposed amendment was prompted by complaints about one particular house on East River Road.

But at Monday's town council meeting, multiple Walton residents criticized the idea of making rules about tall grass. 

Some used pretty high-flown rhetoric, the Reporter reports:  Read more

Mount Tremper man sentenced for Boiceville bank robbery

On Wednesday, Oct. 15, 54-year-old Nicholas Liakis of Shandaken was sentenced to a lengthy prison term for robbing Community Bank on Route 28 in Boiceville in February.

Left: Nicholas Liakis, in a photo from the Ulster County District Attorney's office. 

According to a press release from Ulster County District Attorney Holley Carnright, Liakis was described as a “persistent violent felony offender” at the hearing.

Liakis has multiple bank robberies and holdups in New York City and Queens on his record, according to the Daily Freeman  Read more

Man who robbed two Ulster County banks sentenced

A 49-year-old Hunter man was sentenced to two back-to-back prison terms of three to six years each on Tuesday, Oct. 14 in Ulster County Court for robbing banks in New Paltz and Saugerties in 2013, according to a press release from Holley Carnright, the Ulster County District Attorney.

Left: Collin Lambert in a photo released by the Ulster County District Attorney's office.

Collin Lambert pled guilty to robbing Key Bank on Market Street in Saugerties on January 11, 2013, and to robbing Chase Bank on Plattekill Avenue in New Paltz on April 2, 2013.

In both robberies, Lambert displayed a note saying that he had a gun, but did not display a weapon or injure anyone.

Lambert was arrested at his Tannersville home in March after allegedly robbing a third bank in Herkimer in December 2013.  Read more

Car plows into village office building in Margaretville

Above: First responders and witnesses on the scene of a one-car crash on Margaretville's Main Street. Photo by Lissa Harris. 

An erratic driver in an Elantra coupe jumped the curb, took out a streetlight and hit the Gottfried Municipal Building at 773 Main Street in Margaretville on Wednesday afternoon. Luckily, it was a drizzly Wednesday and not a sunny Sunday, and few people were on the street.

The accident occurred around 4:45 p.m. No one was struck, and the building did not appear to be badly damaged. The Gottfried building houses the Margaretville village office and local DMV branch.

The driver, who appeared to be conscious after the accident, was taken from the scene by ambulance by Margaretville Hospital Emergency Medical Services. 

Jess Olenych, owner of the Home Goods kitchen store across the street from the building, saw the crash happen and was the first to call 911. 

"She just came around the corner and hit the light pole and just kept going," Olenych said.   Read more

This Weekend: The Woodstock Film Festival

Above: A trailer for I Believe in Unicorns, a film that was partially shot in the Hudson Valley. It is a featured film at this year's Woodstock Film Festival. 

The annual Woodstock Film Festival kicks off Wednesday, Oct. 15, bringing big names -- actors Natalie Portman, Jennifer Connelly, Courteney Cox, and Melissa Leo, playwright Tony Kushner, director Darren Aronofsky (who directed Requiem for a Dream and Black Swan), and jazz musician Hugh Masekela -- to the Catskills and the Hudson Valley to talk film.

Lots of this year's events and panels are already sold out, including tonight's premiere screening of East Jerusalem/West Jerusalem, a documentary about Israeli musician David Broza’s new album, made against the larger backdrop of tensions between Israel and Palestine. (Broza himself will be playing a set after the screening, along with singer-songwriter Steve Earle.)   Read more