Niagara Gazette

September 19, 2013

BLOTTER: Police reports published Sept. 19

Staff Reports
Niagara Gazette


Alert Rite Aid employees foil scam

Niagara County Sheriff's deputies were called in Tuesday night to the South Transit Road Rite Aid to assist Lockport police in dealing with a 78-year-old woman who was in the process of being scammed.

Store employees called police after the woman told them she loading up two Green Dot debit cards with $500 each to pay for a car she had just won. When police arrived, the woman told them someone claiming to be from Publisher's Clearing House called her and told her she had just won a Mercedes car and it would be parked in her driveway when she arrived home. The person on the phone told her to load up $500 each on the debit cards but it wasn't reported what she was supposed to do with them.

The Rite Aid employees would not perform the transactions and the deputy thanked them for calling police.

Despite what police said, the deputy said the woman still believed the car would be in her driveway when she arrived home. 

The deputy followed the woman the woman home and there was no Mercedes in the driveway. The woman showed the deputy the number that had called her (876-863-1390) and the deputy noticed that phone number had been calling her about 10 times a day. A search on the internet determined the number was notorious for scams out of Jamaica. It was not a number related to Publishers Clearing House.

The deputy told the woman to have her son, who was working at the time, call the sheriff's office about the matter.


Niagara Falls

• BURGLARY: A resident on the 500 block of Ferry Avenue reported Tuesday that sometime since Saturday someone kicked in their apartment door and took a $400 dining room set, a $1,400 bedroom set, a $600 surround-sound speaker set, a $700 fridge, an older $50 oven and three mirrors valued at $150. A neighbor said they saw two men loading items into a pickup on Sunday.

• BURGLARY: Falls police were called to the 3400 block of Highland Avenue Tuesday for a report of copper wiring stolen from a vacant building. About 100 pounds of copper wiring was taken from the old production building that has been vacant for several years. The estimated loss is $750.

• VANDALISM: The manager for a store on Pine Avenue told police Tuesday that a customer had had a disagreement with earlier in the day Tuesday came back around midnight and slashed the passenger-side tires on his car. The incident was captured by security cameras and police are investigating the matter.

Town of Niagara

• DWI: Andrew J. McGraw, 39, 4939 Chestnut Road, Newfane, was charged with DWI and several traffic violations about 12:15 a.m. Wednesday, according to Niagara County Sheriff's deputies. While driving on Military Road, a deputy said they saw McGraw pull onto Military Road and start driving in the center median, swerving in and out of the lane. After being pulled over, the deputy noted that McGraw had no shirt on and had a brush burn on his face. He appeared intoxicated and when the deputy asked him to step out of the car, the deputy said there was a large amount of vomit on the inside of the driver's door. The deputy tried to administer field sobriety tests but McGraw was unable to stand without falling and could not talk clearly. He refused to take a breath test.

City of Lockport

• CHARGED: Eric J. Bartram, 36, 49 Rockland Ave., Clarence was charged with second-degree aggravated unlicensed operation Tuesday, according to Lockport police. At 2:45 p.m., officers responded to South Transit Road for the report of a man slumped over the steering wheel of his car. According to the report, Bartram appeared disoriented and his shirt and pants were wet. Bartram had a suspended license with seven suspensions. He had six warrants out of Niagara Falls and was turned over to the Niagara Falls Police Department.