Police Beat, Nov. 14, 2023

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Editors Note: An arrest or charge is not a conviction. All persons listed are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Charges can be amended or dismissed.

Whitehall Police Beat

Nov. 2

1:38 a.m. Village police were informed of a reported motorcycle theft while taking a Whitehall man into custody for allegedly violating an order of protection on Oct. 28. Five days later, police discovered a motorcycle with Vermont plates parked on Main Street while investigating an apparent “burn-out” on the street. A computer check initially found no information on the plate or the vehicle identification number on the bike, but police subsequently received information identifying the owner – who was not the man who initially reported the motorcycle stolen. Officers obtained video footage of the incident and charged Robert W. Valley, 32, of Whitehall, with third-degree criminal possession of stolen property, a felony, and third-degree unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, a misdemeanor. The man who reported the bike stolen came to the police station after being released from custody on the criminal contempt charge and said he no longer wanted the vehicle to be reported as stolen.

Nov. 3

5:34 a.m. A 16-year-old Albany youth is facing three felony charges after he allegedly smashed the glass front door of a Whitehall business. The teen was charged with second-degree criminal mischief, third-degree burglary and fourth-degree criminal possession of stolen property after a passenger in the truck he was driving got out and smashed the door. The truck had been reported as stolen and was involved in a pursuit that involved law enforcement officers in Washington, Warren and Saratoga counties. A video of the Whitehall incident showed a person matching the description of the passenger after state police were able to stop the truck. The Albany teen was processed on the charges and issued juvenile appearance ticket returnable Nov. 22 in Washington County Family Court. Charges are still reportedly pending against the passenger.

2:06 p.m. Village police arrested a Maple Street resident on a warrant from Warren County charging her with assault. Ashley M. Parker, 33, was taken into custody without incident and turned over to Warren County sheriff’s deputies, who also served her with an order of protection.

Nov. 4

5:57 a.m. Police were dispatched to Poultney Street in response to a report of a dog running loose in traffic. The person who reported the dog was able to get the owner’s information from a tag on the collar but was unable to make contact by telephone. Officers went to the owner’s residence but were also unable to make contact. The dog and the contact information were turned over to the town dog control officer.

1:12 p.m. An 18-year-old Whitehall resident reported his bicycle had been stolen from outside a Broadway store. The teen told police he had been in the store for about 20 minutes and found his bike gone when he left.

1:25 p.m. A Dresden resident came to the Whitehall police station to ask officers to help her access a video card that she believed contained an image of the person who had broken into her camp. Officers were able to access the image but could not see the suspect’s face. The information was passed on to the Washington County Sheriff’s Department, as the incident took place outside the village.

4:45 p.m. While on patrol, officers saw heavy smoke coming from the rear of a Poultney Street residence. A woman in the residence said her husband was supposed to have notified fire control that he would be burning hay bales behind the house. Because of the thickness of the smoke, the woman said she would extinguish the blaze.

Nov. 7

11:52 a.m. A Whitehall man is facing two charges after he allegedly disobeyed a court order and entered a Maple Street residence without permission. Eugene E. Bessette, 31, of Broadway, was charged by village police with aggravated family offense, a felony, and second-degree criminal contempt, a misdemeanor, after he allegedly was found in a Maple Street residence. Bessette reportedly told police he was attempting to retrieve food and clothing he claimed were his, but the resident said he was not supposed to be in the building and noted that her security cameras had apparently been unplugged. He was taken to the Washington County Jail to await arraignment.

Nov. 8

9:06 p.m. Police were dispatched to a Champlain Avenue residence in response to reported ongoing issues between a man and his wife. The man was not at the residence when officers arrived, but the wife told them he had spit on her several times and prevented her from leaving the residence. She also told them her husband had threatened her son. Police returned to the residence the next day and arrested Bret A. Lamere, 50, on a misdemeanor charge of second-degree criminal contempt. Lamere was taken to the Washington County Central Arraignment Court.

Washington County Sheriff’s Office

Nov. 3

4:09 p.m. – On this date, the Washington County Sheriff’s Office began investigating a report of a stolen vehicle, a 2012 GMC pickup, from a residence on State Route 197 in the Town of Argyle. The investigation continued throughout the day in an attempt to locate the vehicle and identify a suspect. Around 4:09 p.m., deputies were advised that Glens Falls Police and New York State Police were attempting to stop the stolen vehicle.

Deputies set up at different locations along the Washington County border. As the occupants of the stolen truck continued eastbound on State Route 197 in the Town of Moreau and allegedly refused to stop for state police, Washington County deputies set up on Bridge Street in the Village of Fort Edward, just into Washington County, with stop sticks. The driver of the truck ran over the stop sticks before coming to a stop a short time later on Argyle Street. Stop sticks are equipped with hollow spikes that puncture the tires as a vehicle drives over them, allowing for a slow release of air.

A 16-year-old driver from Fort Edward and a 16-year-old passenger from Granville were both taken into custody. Information had been previously relayed that there may have been a rifle in the vehicle, however no firearm was located, according to police. The 16-year-old driver was familiar with the owner of the vehicle. The driver of the pick-up was charged in Washington County as a juvenile and faces a single count of felony grand larceny as well as other charges in Saratoga County.

Charges for the passenger remain under investigation. There were no injuries.

Fair Haven Police Department beat

On Oct. 1, police were called to Main Street in the town for a reported firearms theft. A few days later, the weapon was recovered and two unidentified juveniles were charged in connection with the theft.

During the investigation, police determined the owner of the firearm, identified as 46-year-old Joshua G. Kruml of Fair Haven, allegedly failed to properly store the weapon as required by state law. Officers claim the weapon was on a shelf with open access, which allowed the juveniles to steal the item.

Kruml was arrested and charged with negligent firearms storage. He was issued a citation to appear in Rutland District Court at a later date.