Area Police Reports


EAST CHICAGO, Ind. – Kim William Rowher, 57, of East Chicago, was charged at 1:30 p.m. on Wednesday on a bench warrant issued by the Cattaraugus County Court after failing to show for a hearing on his felony aggravated driving while intoxicated, first-degree aggravated unlicensed operation and operating without an ignition interlock device charges from December 2012. Acting on information received, deputies contacted the East Chicago (Ind.) Police Department who located Rowher at his employment and took him into custody without incident. He is currently being held in Indiana pending extradition back to Cattaraugus County.

ALLEGANY – Gregory P. Benavidez Jr., 20, of 1892 Four Mile Road, Lot 3, Allegany, was charged at 8:13 p.m. on Wednesday for a violation of probation warrant. He was taken to Allegany Town Court where he was arraigned, was remanded to the Cattaraugus County Jail and will appear in court at a later date.


GERRY – Robert J. Austin, 35, of 26 Ulrich Park Drive, Cassadaga, was charged at 9:50 p.m. on Sunday with failure to yield the right of way, leaving the scene of a property damage accident, consumption of alcohol in a motor vehicle, driving while intoxicated and aggravated DWI. Sheriff’s deputies were dispatched to a motor vehicle accident on Route 60 in the town of Gerry. Upon arrival, it was discovered that the driver left the scene. Investigation determined that Austin was operating the motor vehicle when he failed to yield the right of way to oncoming traffic and struck a vehicle traveling southbound. Austin was charged and will appear in the town of Gerry Court at a later date.

IRVING – Thomas F. Gagola, 52, of Irving was charged at 2:30 p.m. on Thursday with second-degree harassment and disorderly conduct. At 2:30 p.m. Gagola went to 845 Routes 5/20, Irving and used obscene and abusive language in a public place and then tried to strike a nurse with a closed fist. He was arraigned in the Town of Hanover Court and remanded to the Chautauqua County Jail in lieu of bail.

BROCTON – Raymond L. Dotson, 44, of Brocton was charged at 6:21 p.m. on Thursday with passing on the right, improper passing, moving from lane unsafely, driving while intoxicated and aggravated DWI. Sheriff’s deputies on patrol on Main Street in the village of Brocton observed an eastbound vehicle pass another eastbound vehicle on the right. The vehicle was stopped for the traffic infraction and Dotson was identified at the operator. After a short investigation, he was charged, processed and later arraigned in the Town of Portland Court. He will appear in Portland Court at a later date and time.


Stephen C. Snyder, 62, of Jamestown was charged at 11:43 p.m. on Thursday with improper right turn intersection, unregistered motor vehicle, second-degree aggravated unlicensed operation, criminally possessing a hypodermic instrument and tampering with physical evidence. On Thursday, a vehicle was observed failing to keep right as it turned south off Allen Street onto English Street. The vehicle was stopped on Barrows Street and Snyder was observed operating it. During the investigation, Snyder was observed trying to hide a hypodermic instrument under his foot and kick it out of the vehicle. He was charged and will be arraigned in the Jamestown City Court.

James D. Blankenship Jr., 25, of Jamestown was charged at 12:51 a.m. on Friday with criminal possession of a weapon. Officers conducted a vehicle stop on Crescent Street, near Thayer Street. While interviewing the occupants of the vehicle, officers observed a pair of metal knuckles on the floor near the rear passenger. Further investigation revealed that the metal knuckles belonged to Blankenship who was the rear passenger. He was taken into custody and transported to the city jail without incident.

Kevin R. Harvey, 32, of Jamestown was charged at 12:37 a.m. on Friday with driving while intoxicated, aggravated DWI and speed in zone. Jamestown police observed a vehicle speeding across the Washington Street bridge. Police stopped the vehicle and spoke with Harvey, the operator, and after speaking with him and a series of field sobriety texts, he was charged. Harvey submitted to a breath test which revealed his blood alcohol content to be more than twice the legal limit. He was released on traffic tickets to return to court at a later date.


BUSTI – David Zaffino, of Warren, Pa., was charged at 3:31 p.m. on Thursday with unlawful possession of marijuana and speed in zone. A vehicle was stopped on Wellman Road, in the town of Busti, for speed in zone and during an investigation it was discovered that Zaffino had a small amount of marijuana and a pipe on his person. He was issued appearance tickets and is schedule to appear in the town of Busti court at a later date.