URGENT seizes over $200,000 from Connecticut man found with marijuana

The Ulster County Regional Gang Enforcement Narcotics Team (URGENT) has arrested a Connecticut man on minor drug and traffic charges and seized over $200,000 found in his car, according to a news release issued by the Ulster County Sheriff's Office.

Eric M. Sobaczewski, a 39-year-old resident of Glastonbury, Connecticut, was pulled over by an Ulster County Sheriff's K-9 team on Route 28 in the town of Ulster, at around 1:15pm on Saturday. The arrest was conducted during a marijuana trafficking surveillance operation being conducted by members of URGENT.

A search of Sobaczewski's vehicle found $203,956 in cash and an unspecified quantity of marijuana. He was charged with misdemeanor aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle and unlawful possession of marijuana, a violation. Both his car and the money found in it were seized pending forfeiture proceedings.

Sobaczewski was released on appearance tickets, but further charges could be added as URGENT continues its ongoing investigation.  Read more

Heroin use led to Gardiner car crash, police say

A 22-year-old Gardiner woman was arrested on Sunday after crashing her car while under the influence of heroin, according to an Ulster County State Police press release.

Ulster County sheriff's deputies reported to an accident where a vehicle had rolled over on Albany Post Road in Gardiner at 9:25pm on Sunday. The driver, 22-year-old Jillian Rose of Gardiner, had heroin and a hypodermic syringe in the car, police said.

According to the press release, police discovered that Rose had used the drug before driving, which led to the accident.

Rose was charged with driving while ability impaired by drugs, criminal possession of a controlled substance and possession of a hypodermic instrument, all misdemeanors.

After being taken into custody, Rose was brought to St. Francis Hospital in Poughkeepsie for blood tests, and later released with appearance tickets for Gardiner Town Court.

Sex abuse suspect brain dead after suicide attempt in Greene County jail

The Daily Mail reports today that Daniel Medici, a 52-year-old Catskill resident who was arrested last weekend and charged with sexually abusing a minor, hung himself in his jail cell on Tuesday while awaiting a preliminary hearing.

Greene County sheriff Greg Seeley told the Daily Mail that Medici is now brain dead:

“When the paramedics got there, he had a pulse,” Seeley said of Medici, “but he did not get enough oxygen to his brain, [making] his brain dead.”

Medici is currently on life support at Columbia Memorial Hospital, Seeley said, adding that a decision whether to end life-sustaining treatment is expected to be made today...

...But Seeley said this wouldn’t have been a problem if the county had a new jail, something county lawmakers have brought to the table in the past.    Read more

Homeless man charged with sexually abusing a 5-year-old

A 22-year-old homeless man was arrested last week in Ulster County and charged with having sexual contact with a 5-year-old girl, according to a New York State Police press release.

Mario Allen was charged with one count of sexual abuse in the first degree, and one count of endangering the welfare of a child after an investigation revealed Allen allegedly engaged in sexual contact with the victim when she was left alone in his care, the press release said.

The Ulster County Family & Child Advocacy Center – which is comprised of the New York State Police, Ulster County Sheriff’s Office, Town of Ulster Police Department and Ulster County Protective Services – and the Ellenville Police Department aided in the investigation.  The case has been referred to the Ulster county District Attorney’s Office Special Victims Bureau, according to the press release.

Allen was arraigned in the City of Kingston Court and sent to Ulster County Jail on a $50,000 cash bail.

Catskill man charged with sexual abuse of minor

A 52-year-old Catskill man was arrested by New York State Police on Sunday and charged with the sexual abuse of a minor.

Daniel Medici, of 78 Toolhouse Road in Catskill, was charged with two counts of criminal sexual act in the first degree, sexual abuse in the first degree, endangering the welfare of a child and attempt to lure a child to commit a crime, with additional charges expected, according to a New York State Police press release.

Medici was arrested after an investigation by police found that he had engaged in sexual contact with an unrelated minor over a year ago. Recently, police said, he attempted to re-establish contact with the same minor through Facebook and lure the minor away from home to engage in more sexual contact.

Medici was arraigned in the Town of Catskill court and sent to Greene County Jail in lieu of $75,000 cash bail or $150,000 secured bond. He will reappear in the Town of Catskill court for a preliminary hearing on January 31.

Grand Gorge man arrested after fistfight

A Grand Gorge man, 34-year-old Joshua T. Mudge, was arrested and charged with assault on Monday, according to a news release from the New York State Police.

Lieutenant Jeff Van Auken told the Watershed Post that state troopers showed up at a Grand Gorge address in response to a 911 call around 8:30am on Monday, and found a fight in progress.

"It was a fight -- there were no weapons involved, just fists," Van Auken said.

Mudge is charged with second-degree assault. He was arraigned in the Town of Andes Court and remanded to the Delaware County Jail in lieu of $1,000 cash bail. Mudge is scheduled to appear in the Town of Roxbury Court on February 6.

Fleeing burglar texts friend: "I am outrunning the police, come get me"

Two men were arrested and charged with burglarizing a home in the Schoharie County town of Summit on Friday: 18-year-old Devyn Clum of Bloomville, and 36-year-old Wayne Swart of Hobart.

State police said that troopers responding to the burglary in progress broadcast a description of the getaway vehicle as a green pickup truck. Meanwhile, another pair of troopers spotted the truck near the Old Summit Country Store on Route 10 and attempted to stop it, but the two men abandoned the truck and fled into the nearby woods.

As they were fleeing, police said, Clum texted a friend: "I am outrunning the police, come get me."

After an extensive search, state troopers found both men in the area, with help from a Department of Environmental Conservation K-9 unit.

Clum and Swart are charged with second-degree burglary -- a felony -- and the misdemeanors of possessing burglar's tools and resisting arrest.

Clum and Swart were arraigned before Town Justice Gerald Vester, Town of Summit, and remanded to the Schoharie County jail in lieu of $50,000 cash and $100,000 bond. State police were assisted by the Schoharie County District Attorney's Office.

Police foil snowboard heist at Windham Mountain

Acting on a tip from Greene County 911, New York State Police arrested two men yesterday when a search of their car turned up 12 snowboards that had been stolen from Windham Mountain. 

Arrested were 21-year-old Anthony Costa of Lagrangeville, the driver of the car, and 20-year-old Adam Wiemer of Verbank, who both face charges of grand larceny in the third degree. Costa is also charged with driving while impaired by drugs, and Wiemer is charged with unlawful possession of marijuana.

State police were alerted by Greene County 911 that a white Nissan Maxima had been involved in the theft of the snowboards earlier that day. When spotted by police, the car was traveling eastbound on Route 23 in Cairo.

Costa and Wiemer were arraigned in the Town of Cairo Town Court before Justice Leland Miller, who remanded the defendants to Greene County Jail in lieu of $1000.00 cash bail or $2,500 secured bond.  Both are scheduled to re-appear on January 30, 2013 at 5pm in the Town of Cairo Court.

New York State Police at Catskill were assisted by the Town of Windham Police Department and Windham Mountain Ski Resort Security.

Two Deposit men among five arrested in Binghamton heroin bust

A three-month investigation into heroin sales in the Southside area of Binghamton yielded five arrests last week, after search warrants executed in the city turned up over 600 packets of heroin, over $20,000 in cash, and other drugs.

Arrested were 33-year-old Juan Dela Cruz and 22-year-old Shaquana Riles of Binghamton, 42-year-old William Michalski and 44-year-old Paul Michalski of Deposit, and 31-year-old Mike Dela Cruz of New York City, according to a news release issued Friday by New York State Police.

William and Paul Michalski were arrested when a search warrant was executed upon their vehicle on Conklin Avenue. Located during the search were 33 packets of heroin, suboxone, drug paraphernalia and a blackjack.

Juan and Mike Dela Cruz were arrested after police executed a search warrant at Juan Dela Cruz’s residence at 9 Telegraph Street, Binghamton. A search of the residence yielded 572 packets of heroin and over $20,000 in cash. Mike Dela Cruz was found in possession of small amounts of marijuana and ecstasy.  Read more

This American Life recounts the tale of the con man of Narrowsburg

Above: Four Deadly Reasons, the film that sparked a Hollywood-worthy furor in the little Sullivan County hamlet of Narrowsburg over a decade ago.

Regular listeners of This American Life, a national radio program from Public Radio International, heard a local legend last week: The story of how the little Sullivan County hamlet of Narrowsburg fell for a smooth-talking two-bit actor named Richard Castellano, and let him walk off with tens of thousands of dollars in exchange for a few empty Hollywood promises.

In the January 18 show -- a repeat that first aired in 2000 -- producer Alex Blumberg talks to locals about how Castellano convinced a whole community to believe that he would put Narrowsburg on the path to movie stardom:  Read more

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