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WJTN News Headlines for Tues., July 12, 2022

Investigation underway into fire at Sheridan business...
Chautauqua County fire investigators are now looking into the cause of yesterday's blaze that heavily damaged much of a pawn shop on Route 20 in the town of Sheridan.  Sheridan firefighters were initially called to the scene at 5:15 p.m. Monday... and, found that part of the structure fully-engulfed in flames.  Route 20 was closed in that area while Sheridan, East Dunkirk, Sunset Bay and Fredonia... and, many other crews... battled the flames.  In addition to the Pawn Stars shop... there was also reportedly a swingers club in that location.  No injuries were reported.


City firefighters make quick work of room fire on Prendergast Avenue...
Quick work by Jamestown firefighters prevented serious damage to a home on the city's northside early last Saturday night.  Fire officials say crews were called to the scene at 905 Prendergast Ave. shortly after 5 p.m., and, were joined by some firefighters that were going off-duty during a shift change.  The fire was under control quickly, and mainly confined to a second-story room.  No injuries were reported, and the cause remains under investigation.  The Red Cross is helping the occupants.


Four arrested in three police raids in Jamestown late last week...
Four people were arrested last Friday afternoon during three separate raids on various drug and weapons possession charges in the city of Jamestown.  City police say search warrants were executed by officers and members of the Jamestown Metro Drug Task Force at about 1 p.m. at 433 Allen St., 341 Forest Ave., and, 38 Bowen St.  At 433 Allen... police say the JPD SWAT Team made entry... and, officers spotted 18 year-old Jacquez Thomas and tried to take him into custody.  Thomas fled, but, officers found him a few blocks away, and arrested him.  Inside the home... they found a loaded, 9-millimeter handgun with a defaced serial number.  Thomas is charged with second-degree criminal possession of a weapon.  At the same time... police entered 341 Forest with the help of the Sheriff's Department SWAT Team... and, found more than 100-grams of crack cocaine... more than 380 grams of methamphetamine... along with scales, packaging materials, and cash proceeds.  A second person... 28 year-old Jose Maisonet... was arrested there... and, charged with second, and third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.  A 16 year-old Juvenile was arrested at 38 Bowen for allegedly shooting an officer in the face and eye with an Orbeez gun.  He was charged with attempted assault.  The child's mother was charged with Endangering the Welfare of a Child.


Funeral arrangments set for CCSO Captain David Bentley... 
Funeral services have now been set for the Chautauqua County Sheriff's Department Captain who drowned in an accident on Chautauqua Lake in the Martha's Vineyard area of the town of Ellery.  The Lind Funeral Home says the funeral for David Bentley will be held this Friday morning at 11 a.m. at First Lutheran Church in Jamestown.  The family will receive friends from 2 to 8 p.m. on Thursday in the Lind Funeral Home.  Captain Bentley... a 37 year veteran of the Sheriff's Department... fell into the lake last Saturday afternoon while trying to get on a boat.  Sheriff Jim Quattrone says members of the department are mourning the loss of the 62 year-old Bentley... who he says had a "huge impact" on law enforcement in the county. 


Dunkirk Police arrest dirt bike rider following July 4th weekend pursuit...
A Fredonia man is facing a slew of charges after he led Dunkirk Police on a pursuit on a dirt bike through city neighborhoods on July 2.  Officers saw an all-terrain Vehicle, and a dirt bike being operated on West Talcott Street near Lincoln Avenue in violation of multiple vehicle and traffic laws.  The operators of both off-road vehicles failed to comply with a traffic stop... and, both led patrols on a short pursuit.  Police terminated the pursuit with the ATV and continued with the dirt bike, which was operated by 18-year-old Onell Rivera-Cruz.  Officers apprehended Rivera-Cruz in the 600 block of Deer Street.  He was charged with several vehicle and traffic violations and was issued tickets for Dunkirk City Court.


Wendel says county now taking applications for use of 3% occupancy tax funding...
Chautauqua County is now accepting applications from interested groups and organizations for next year's 3% Tourism Product Development Grant Program.  The program is funded through the county's 5% bed tax... and County Executive P-J Wendel says it's used to provide grants to projects that "will achieve, and/or support special tourism product and event development initiatives."  Wendel says it may be an event, a community picnic or other events to be held.  He says the funding cycle is usually three years.  Wendel says applications for the 3% bed tax funding are being accepted by the Planning and Economic Development Department through October 1st.  The 2% tax is used soley for the enhancement and protection of all lakes and streams in the county.


Humane Society continuing dog adoption fee waiver through July 16...
Officials with the Chautauqua County Humane Society say they are "very grateful" to the community's response to their recent plea for help regarding the dog population at the shelter.  Senior Programs Director Brian Papalia says... since June 14th... they've had 11 dogs adopted... and, four more go into foster to adopt situations.  Papalia says there were also several strays that were being held that were reunited back to their families.  He says there are currently around 20 dogs available for adoption... and, adds they are continuing to waive adoption fees through this Saturday, July 16.