New York state briefs

Staff reports

Football team helps dispose of stolen beer

WAYLAND — A dozen members of the Wayland-Cohocton high school football team headed out Tuesday morning to crack open some brews.

And the Steuben County Sheriff’s Office greeted them at the Wayland transfer station with nearly 10,000 cans of Bud Light, confiscated a year-and-a-half ago after a raid in Cameron Mills.

The raid led to felony charges of criminal possession of stolen property against Dean and Mary Cole of Rathbone. Michael Wray Jr., a Pennsylvania man, allegedly offered them a deal they couldn’t refuse on the stolen beer.

While the case against the Coles is pending in Steuben County and Wray is facing charges in Pennsylvania, the confiscation also led to a quandary for Sheriff Richard Tweddell — he didn't know what to do with the beer.

“We contacted Anheuser-Busch and were advised (drinking the beer) would just make people sick,” Tweddell said. And there was the problem of what to do with the empties if the cans were poured out.

Tweddell consulted with the state Department of Environmental Conservation, the county District Attorney, and county Public Works Commissioner Vince Spagnoletti.

With go-aheads from all parties, he asked if Wayland-Cohocton football coach Jim Brownell’s team would help them dump the beer.

Tweddell and two investigators helped open cans and pour, open more cans and pour more, reach for another six-pack and pour. Cpl. Rich Lock was the uniformed presence, keeping a watchful eye to make sure there wasn’t any gulping.

In addition to the fumes from 9,792 cans of old, warm beer on a hot day, there were the sheer dynamics of opening can after can.

Some players favored a leisurely one can-one pour method, while others tackled six-packs, opening all six cans then dumping them at once. Some liked the quick flip method, a rapid open-and-toss-over-the-shoulder pattern that left teammates looking around for the next flying beer can.

The players started using screwdrivers to pry the cans open when their fingers became raw from popping the rings. Some players began to talk through their noses as a way to avoid the smell.

Brownell said the money the team gets will be used for rewards and incentives during the season.

“And T-shirts for these guys,” he said, smiled, and reached for another Bud Light. “They deserve it.”

Police probe shooting in Newport

NEWPORT — A Saturday night incident in the town of Newport in which one man was shot in both legs has led to a charge of second-degree attempted murder for the shooter.

According to New York State Police, the investigating agency, Michael Caldwell, 42, of 5526 State Route 28, and Daniel P. Uebele, 33, of 5520 State Route 28, who both live in the White Creek Trailer Park, were involved in a physical altercation and subsequent shooting at the trailer park on Saturday around 10:30 p.m.

Investigator Ben Scalise said he believes the altercation started as a verbal argument and then turned physical.

Police stated the initial altercation between Caldwell and Uebele left Caldwell with a fractured left eye socket.

Caldwell then retreated to his trailer according to police and obtained a SKS assault type rifle then re-confronted Uebele outside.

Rifle in hand, Caldwell fired off several rounds, striking Uebele in both legs during his firing, said police. Both subjects were transported to area hospitals by the Kuyahoora Ambulance Service.

On Monday, Caldwell was released from Crouse Hospital in Syracuse and was transported to the Herkimer state police barracks, where he was arrested and charged with second-degree attempted murder.

Caldwell was arraigned in the town of Newport Court and sent to the Herkimer County Correctional Facility in lieu of $100,000 bail, $200,000 bond.

The investigation is continuing and possible additional charges in the case are pending.

Thieves strike Habitat for Humanity project

OSWEGO — The scaffolding at the new Habitat for Humanity house in Oswego has gone missing and Habitat board member Debbie Anderson is looking to get it back.

According to Anderson, the scaffolding located at the partially-constructed house on the corner of Duer and Albany streets, went missing sometime Saturday afternoon. She said a mailman went by the house Saturday morning and when he passed it again around 2 p.m., the scaffolding was gone.

“Somebody’s watching it because we didn’t have any crews there Saturday,” Anderson said.

Capt. Tory DeCaire, the public relations officer for the Oswego Police Department, said officers wrote the report Monday morning and conducted an investigation, which included a neighborhood canvas. At this time, there are no identified suspects and the investigation is continuing, DeCaire said.

Anderson is hoping someone will return the scaffolding, especially since it is not the organization’s. It belongs to volunteers who are working on the house.

“I’d like to offer, if they’d return it, there would be no questions asked, because it is worth over $1,000. We at Habitat will just let it go,” Anderson said. “We just want it returned.”

If anyone has any information about the stolen scaffolding, they can contact the Oswego Police at (315) 342-8120 or Anderson at (315) 593-4886.