Local News Sponsors

Local News Headlines

WJTN News Headlines for Fri., Dec. 3, 2021

City man pleads guilty to being a Felon in possession of handguns...
A Jamestown man who is a convicted Felon has pleaded guilty to being in possession of a gun after he and two others broke into a town of Ellicott home nearly three years ago.  U.S. Attorney Trini Ross announced Thursday that 34 year-old Angelo Pollino entered the plea before U.S. District Judge Richard Arcara to being a felon in possession of a firearm, which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison and a quarter of a million dollar fine.  Prosecutors say Pollino and the other two men broke into the house in late January of 2019... and, stole a .380-caliber pistol, a .38-caliber revolver, a Glock pistol, and various bank and credit cards of the victim.  The following day, they say the three used the victim’s bank and credit cards at various locations in New York and Pennsylvania.  Pollino then traded the pistol and revolver for heroin.  He's to be sentenced next March.


Tedesco pleads guilty in Beardsley drug ring case...
A man from Jamestown has pleaded guilty to being involved in a methamphetamine drug trafficking operation... in which he also sold heroin and fentanyl.  U.S. Attorney Trini Ross announced Thursday that Tyler Tedesco entered the plea before U.S. District Judge Richard Arcara to conspiring to possess with intent to distribute, and distributing, 50 grams or more of methamphetamine.  Prosecutors say Tedesco was an associate of co-defendant Rocco Beardsley, who led a drug trafficking organization in the Jamestown area.  Tedesco was accused of selling large amounts of the drugs... and, storing them, along with profits, and coordinated with co-conspirators to sell the drugs.  Both men were accused of using Facebook to communicate about their narcotics activities including debts, cash and drug transactions.  Tedesco faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 10 years in prison, a maximum of life, and a $10-million fine.  Charges are still pending against Beardsley.


Wendel confirms two county hospitals on state lists of reaching 10% to less capacity...
Two of the 37 hospitals in New York state that have reached 10% capacity... or less... are in Chautauqua County.  That as Governor Kathy Hochul's order that would halt non-essential, and non-urgent procedures in those hospitals takes effect tomorrow.  However... County Executive P-J Wendel says mobilizing the National Guard to help at nursing homes with staffing shortages could be a big boost in getting people discharged to those homes or other long-term facilities.  Those state mandates have required nursing home staff and nurses to get one of the three COVID vaccines.  Wendel says using the guard in nursing home facilities should free up acute hospital beds.  The Post-Journal reports all 106 acute care beds at UPMC Chutauqua Hospital... and, 32 of the 35 beds at Brook's Hospital in Dunkirk... were occupied as of Wednesday.  Wendel adds that something like a mask mandate has not been taken off the table if the county's numbers don't get better. 


Hochul says NYS is ready to deal with COVID Omicron variant, now reported in five states...
Health officials say lab testing has confirmed a COVID-19 case involving the omicron variant in five states -- including a man from Minnesota who tested positive after attending an "anime" convention at the Javits Center in New York City.  Governor Kathy Hochul says they have begun contacting people who were at that convention.  However... during a COVID-19 briefing Thursday in New York City... Hochul noted that all attendees were required to be vaccinated, and the man's symptoms have been mild.  She says there is "no cause for alarm" because they knew it would get here at some point.  The state Department of Health says the variant was found during its surveillance program in a specimen from the Minnesota.  State health officials there say the person with the omicron variant is a man who lives in Hennepin County and had been vaccinated.  The person developed mild symptoms on Nov. 22... and, sought COVID-19 testing on Nov. 24. 


Hochul officially introduces Dr. Mary Bassett as new NYS health commissioner...
Governor Kathy Hochul also introduced her new state Health Commissioner during Thursday's press conference.  She says Dr. Mary Bassett has been a doctor, and a "highly-regarded" health official for better than three decades... who was New York City's Health and Mental Health Commissioner for a time.  Bassett told Hochul and the media that she will tell them the truth about what's happening with the pandemic... and, adds that "our knowledge about (the virus) is evolving."  Bassett also praised members of the state Health Department for their hard work, and dedication during the COVID pandemic.  She says they have been monitoring the situation with the new Omicron variant... adding that she's "no stranger to crisis."  Bassett replaces former Health Commissioner Howard Zucker... who had served previously during the administration of former Governor Andrew Cuomo. 


Dunkirk basement fire triggered by dryer fire...
A dryer fire that spread to nearby combustables in a basement triggered flames that damaged the basement of a Dunkirk home just after Noon Wednesday.  That from Fire Chief Mike Edwards Thursday... who says some neighbors noticed smoke coming from a dryer vent at 27 Leming St., and, call the fire department.  Edwards says crews arrived quickly, and had the flames out shortly after arrival.  The fire was confined to the basement area... and there were no injuries.