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News stories tagged with "crime"

The house in Hermon where Stephen Howells II and Nicole Vaisey live. Photo: Natasha Haverty
The house in Hermon where Stephen Howells II and Nicole Vaisey live. Photo: Natasha Haverty

DA: "potential of other victims" of accused kidnappers

Investigators are sifting through mountains of potential evidence gathered at the St. Lawrence County home of a couple accused of kidnapping two Amish girls from their roadside vegetable stand last week.

Stephen Howells II and Nicole Vaisey, of Hermon, are in county jail on charges of first-degree degree kidnapping.  Go to full article
Stephen Howells II and Nicole Vaisey have been charged with first degree kidnapping. Photos: St. Lawrence County Sheriff
Stephen Howells II and Nicole Vaisey have been charged with first degree kidnapping. Photos: St. Lawrence County Sheriff

More charges expected against Amish girls' kidnappers

More charges are expected this week against a St. Lawrence county couple who allegedly kidnapped two Amish girls. Police gathered evidence Sunday at the Hermon, NY, home of 39 year-old Stephen Howells II and 25 year-old Nicole Vaisey. Hermon is about a dozen miles south of Canton.

Howells and Vaisey were arrested Friday night following a massive search and investigation. They are charged with 1st degree kidnapping with intent to harm the two Amish girls, ages 6 and 12. They're in St. Lawrence County jail without bail.

The abduction happened Wednesday evening when the girls came out to attend to their family's roadside vegetable stand. The girls were set free about 24 hours later. But the prosecutor in the case says that was not before they were sexually assaulted.  Go to full article
Trevor Sisto, age 20, of Fort Covington NY has been charged with numerous felonies following last week's deadly crash.  Photo:  Lake Placid Village Police Department via Lake Placid News
Trevor Sisto, age 20, of Fort Covington NY has been charged with numerous felonies following last week's deadly crash. Photo: Lake Placid Village Police Department via Lake Placid News

Police say deadly Lake Placid car chase handled properly

State Police and the Police Chief in Lake Placid say a high-speed car chase that ended in a fatal accident last week in the Adirondacks was handled properly.

The crash on Rt. 86 in Ray Brook left a Potsdam couple dead and their eleven-year-old daughter with serious injuries.

In the days since the accident, questions have circulated in social media about whether police made a mistake in pursuing Trevor Sisto, age 20, who was fleeing a hit-and-run accident in Lake Placid.  Go to full article
Governor Nelson Rockefeller surprised his own staff with his dramatic shift on drug policy.
Governor Nelson Rockefeller surprised his own staff with his dramatic shift on drug policy.

Murrow Award: How Rockefeller drug laws changed America

This spring North Country Public Radio's news team has been honored with several major national awards for some of the work we've brought you over the past year. Much of that recognition has gone to our Prison Time Media Project, which over a year and a half has looked in-depth at the growth of the prison industry here in our region, across New York and around the country.

The series unfolded as the country was beginning to take another look at the way we think about crime, and justice, and these stories became part of that national conversation. The first story of the series has just received one of the top honors in journalism: a National Edward R. Murrow award.

In January of 1973, New York Gov. Nelson Rockefeller launched his campaign for what came to be known as the Rockefeller drug laws. Rockefeller demanded tough prison sentences, even for low-level drug dealers and addicts. It was an idea that quickly spread, influencing state and Federal law across the US.

In this first story, Brian Mann takes us back to the beginning, when New Yorkers were demanding solutions to a heroin epidemic that was scarring urban neighborhoods.  Go to full article
St. Lawrence County Correctional Facility. Photo: Office of the Sheriff, St. Lawrence County
St. Lawrence County Correctional Facility. Photo: Office of the Sheriff, St. Lawrence County

Proposal to un-crowd county jails waits in the Assembly

Today is set to be the last day of New York's legislative session. Two bills in front of the Assembly, put forth by State Sen. Patty Ritchie, aim to ease overcrowding in our region's county jails. The bills would require the Department of Corrections to assume responsibility for men and women caught violating parole within ten days of receiving their violation warrant. Richie says too many of those men and women are instead held in county jails, at local taxpayers' expense.  Go to full article
Police investigating the scene of Garrett Phillips' death in 2011. Photo: Nora Flaherty
Police investigating the scene of Garrett Phillips' death in 2011. Photo: Nora Flaherty

Hillary pleads not guilty in Garrett Phillips murder

This morning, officers led Oral Hillary into the St. Lawrence County courthouse for his bail hearing. Potsdam police arrested him at his home the afternoon before. Hillary is charged with second degree murder in the death of 12-year-old Garrett Phillips in Potsdam. The arrest followed four days of closed-door grand jury testimony.  Go to full article
Yard signs like this have kept the Garrett Phillips case in the public eye.   Photo: Julie Grant
Yard signs like this have kept the Garrett Phillips case in the public eye. Photo: Julie Grant

Suspect arrested in murder of 12 year-old Potsdam boy

Two and a half years after 12-year-old Garrett Phillips was found murdered in Potsdam, a suspect has been taken into custody. Potsdam police arrested Oral "Nick" Hillary, Clarkson University's soccer coach, Thursday afternoon. Hillary was charged with second degree murder after a sealed indictment was delivered to St. Lawrence County court. The suspect pleaded not guilty and is in county jail without bail.  Go to full article
New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli. Photo: <a href="http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:New_York_State_Comptroller_Thomas_P._DiNapoli.jpg">Awhill34</a>, Creative Commons, some rights reserved
New York State Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli. Photo: Awhill34, Creative Commons, some rights reserved

Altona bookkeeper accused of stealing public money

State officials say a former town book-keeper in Altona in Clinton County embezzled $23,500 of taxpayer money. The alleged wrong-doing was found in an audit released yesterday by the New York State Comptroller's office.  Go to full article
District Attorney Derek Champagne from Franklin County says counties need to begin tracking and reporting heroin overdoses and deaths more accurately. He also wants better regional crime intelligence. NCPR File photo: Brian Mann
District Attorney Derek Champagne from Franklin County says counties need to begin tracking and reporting heroin overdoses and deaths more accurately. He also wants better regional crime intelligence. NCPR File photo: Brian Mann

Franklin County DA wants North Country crime intelligence center

One of the North Country's prosecutors says the region needs better intelligence-gathering to deal with the spread of crime, including a surge in heroin trafficking. Franklin County District Attorney Derek Champagne says he hopes to see crime analysts based in Malone who would help share information throughout the North Country.  Go to full article
Yard signs like this have kept the Garrett Phillips case in the public eye.   Photo: Julie Grant
Yard signs like this have kept the Garrett Phillips case in the public eye. Photo: Julie Grant

Garrett Phillips case in St. Lawrence County grand jury today

After two and a half years, evidence in the murder of 12-year-old Garrett Phillips of Potsdam is being heard in a St. Lawrence Country Grand Jury today. Phillips was killed in the apartment he shared with his mother in October, 2011. Investigators said he'd been strangled, and smothered.

Since then, there's not been much hard news in the case. Last week, WWNY-TV in Watertown reported that County District Attorney Mary Rain would present evidence to the grand jury today. WWNY's John Friot also reported that at least two dozen witnesses had been served subpoenas ordering them to testify.

According to Friot, there's been no big break. But there was a high-level meeting recently between Rain and other prosecutors and investigators around the state who've been involved in the ongoing investigation. He said, "What I am being told is, the consensus was, when you connect all the dots, it brings the dots to a certain person of interest."  Go to full article

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