Niagara Gazette

January 13, 2014

BLOTTER: Police reports published Jan. 12

Staff Reports
Niagara Gazette

Niagara Falls

• ARREST: A Falls man was arrested following a reported fight at 8:56 p.m. Friday in the 1600 block of Pine Avenue. Matthew McPhatter, 26, 1609 Pine Ave., was charged with disorderly conduct after police said he was near the fight's location with a baseball bat acting like he was trying to enter the fray. Police said residents were acting nervous at the scene both because of the fight and because of the baseball bat, so he was taken into custody and the bat was placed in evidence.

• ARREST: A Maryland man was arrested following a reported shoplifting incident at 7:45 p.m. Friday at a business in the 1500 block of Military Road. Daniel Meeks, 21, 115 Prouse Road, Queenstown, Md., was charged with petit larceny after police said he fled the store in a black vehicle. His vehicle was located behind a nearby restaurant and questioning resulted in him confessing to taking more than $73 of merchandise from the store. He was taken into custody without incident, police said.

• THEFT: Police are investigating a reported theft at 8 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 29 from a business in the 2500 block of Pine Avenue. The victim, a 61-year-old man, told police he'd dropped off a money order payment of $130 on that day using the after-hours drop slot. He said he received a phone call four days later saying the payment was never received. At the business Friday evening, police said a store employee shared surveillance footage showing the money order deposited by the victim before a man with a long stick-like object appears at the door, slides the stick under the door and pulls the money order out. He then proceeds to walk east on Pine Avenue, according to police. The store employee said he contacted a local bank, which told him the money order was cashed Dec. 31 and the name of the business was crossed out and the name "Larry Kraft" was written in.

• THEFT: Police are investigating a reported theft between 5:40 and 5:55 p.m. Friday from a business in the 8400 block of Niagara Falls Boulevard. The store manager told police he stopped a woman pushing a shopping cart with luggage he believed was about to be stolen inside. When questioned, the woman said the luggage was a Christmas present and displayed mail from inside the luggage to prove her story. When the manager asked the woman to open the luggage, he said, the woman ran while pushing the cart. He said he phoned police and chased her. He was able to reclaim the shopping cart and luggage, though she fled on foot and was not located. He told police the luggage was confirmed stolen and had laundry detergent, soap, shower gel and several towels inside. The total value of the items was $120, he said.