Police in Wolcott

    By on December 2, 2015

    Dear Editor,

    The last few months have been filled with stories of break-ins and vandalism in Wolcott. What doesn’t get reported are the successes of the police in apprehending the perpetrators.

    Below are some of those success stories:

    In early October, the Methodist Church was broken into. As Pastor Jake Denny came in to get ready for a funeral being held that same day, he noticed that a spotlight had been left on, a screen door broken, and the door to his office smashed. The security cameras had been pulled out and broken off their stands.

    The Sheriff’s Office was called and immediately sent six officers to the church. Within about two days, the investigators had found the responsible parties — two older teenagers and one teen under age 16. Damages amounted to about $3,000. The two older teenagers are in jail awaiting sentencing. The minor has been remanded to family court.

    Pastor Denny was very impressed by the police, saying that “they were extremely professional, thorough, and very considerate of the funeral that was taking place as they were conducting their investigation”.

    On the night of October 6, the Reynolds Liquor Store was burglarized. The glass front door was shattered, causing about $1200 worth of damage. In addition, about $100 worth of change and $100 worth of liquor were taken. The Sheriff’s office responded immediately and stayed on the premises during the night so that the owner, Bill Reynolds, and his daughter could go home and did not have to remain at the store overnight.

    Bill Reynolds said that he was “very pleased with the investigation. Everything was handled within 24 hours.” The thief, 23, a resident of Sodus, is currently in jail on other charges. He will be sentenced for the Liquor Store robbery at a later date.

    This past week the State Police announced that the man who had broken into Bill Blaisdell’s house on Draper Street, robbed him, and tied him up with duct tape, has been formally charged. His sentencing is scheduled for late December.

    When he robbed the Blaisdell house, he had been on a two week reprieve from the county judge to get his affairs in order before he was due to report to jail for other Wolcott break-ins.

    Bill Blaisdell’s daughter says that the State Police came at once when she alerted them. In addition, the Village Police and the Sheriff also responded. Officers and police dogs searched the Draper Street area for hours in the dark. She says that “the police have been very supportive throughout the whole process and have kept us up to date on everything”.

    The Wolcott Village police often have to turn over investigations to the State Police or the Wayne County Sheriff. With three part-time officers, and shifts starting only at 4 p.m., the Village police do not have the same resources as the state or the county. In addition, their time is sometimes spent figuring out if “a noise in the backyard” was a robber or a raccoon. Until it is determined that that noise was a raccoon, the case remains open.

    Lately, the state and county police have made extra personnel available to help the Village police deal with the rash of break-ins. Moreover, the fact that the Village police are well acquainted with local troublemakers helps them to identify and arrest some “bad guys”. Such was the case when a local business was broken into — Officer Tom Ryan looked at the security camera footage, recognized the perpetrator and arrested him 30 minutes later.

    Police have a hard job to do. If a minor (someone under 16) is arrested, they will be sent to family court and usually set free. For an adult, a series of legal steps must be taken before he (or she) can be charged and sentenced. This process often takes months, and while the police are waiting for these legalities to happen their hands are tied — they cannot release any information about the crime or the person without jeopardizing their case.

    All the police are working hard in Wolcott — they deserve our support.

    — Phoebe Meijer, Wolcott

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