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ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) — Multiple fire companies responded to a large barn fire on 20a Town of Orchard Park Thursday evening.
Witnesses say they saw the barn struck by lightning around 6:30 p.m. before it became fully engulfed in flames. Crews at the scene say no one was injured and no people or animals were inside the barn during the fire.
According to neighbors, the barn was at the center of a dispute because of its condition.
Neighbors told News 4 the barn was very old, dilapidated and an eye sore to the community. Orchard Park Police say they have also received numerous complaints about the barn.
In the preliminary investigation, police believe the fire was started after the barn was struck by lightning.
The fire is under investigation.
ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (WIVB) – The Buffalo Bills selected LSU cornerback Tre’Davious White with the 27th overall pick in the NFL Draft.
White, a first-team All-American and All-SEC selection this past season, started all 12 games for the Tigers in his senior year. He finished the year with 35 tackles, 4 tackles-for-a-loss and half a sack. He also had 14 pass breakups, raking him 10th in LSU school history. He also finished the season as the most difficult cornerback to pass against, allowing just 41% of his targets to be completed.
The Bills were originally slated to pick 10th overall but traded down in the draft with the Kansas City chiefs. In return for the 10th pick, Buffalo received the 2017 27th pick and 91st pick (3rd round) as well as a first-round pick in 2018.
The NFL Draft continues on Friday evening with the second and third rounds.
It will be a partly to mostly sunny and cooler finish to the week Friday. Expect some patchy morning clouds across the Twin Tiers with a bit more clouds along the Pennsylvania border during the afternoon, but it remains rainfree. Clouds overspread all of the region overnight with just a chance of an isolated shower.
Rain catches up with us again over the weekend. Expect a lot of dry time Saturday. There will be some early morning showers across the Southern Tier and Northern Tier of Pennsylvania, and some sunny breaks across the Niagara Frontier. A warm front ahead of a storm traveling up into the Great Lakes will result in more scattered rain showers and maybe some thunderstorms by Sunday, but it doesn’t appear to be a washout at this point. Behind that warm front, temperatures surge back into the 70s ahead of a late day cold front. Rain showers and possibly some potent thunderstorms will accompany the front through the region later in the day. A brisk wind will follow the cold front along with some scattered rain showers. Overall, we’ll be into a cooler pattern next week with some scattered rain showers at times.
FRIDAY: Sun Cloud Mix, Not as Warm, Somewhat cloudier toward the Twin Tiers, High: 63-70, 57 Buffalo Waterfront, Wind: SW 8-18/7-14
FRIDAY NIGHT; Clouds spread northward, Chance of a Shower, More Showers Develop well south by morning, Low: 50-56, Wind: SSW/NW 8-16
SATURDAY: Mostly Cloudy, A bit of Early Drizzle, More Early Showers So. Tier/No. Tier PA, then plenty of dry time with some breaks of sun metro northward, High: 60-66, Wind: NW/NE 5-12, Low: 45
SUNDAY: Cloudy, Scattered Showers, Chance of a Thunderstorm, High: 60, Low: 57
MONDAY: Limited Morning Sun, Another round of Showers and Thunderstorms developing by later in the afternoon, some could be potent, High: 78, Low: 51
TUESDAY: Cooler, Quite Windy, Mostly Cloudy, Scattered Rain Showers, High: 49, Low: 40
WEDNESDAY: Mostly Cloudy, High: 49, Low: 39
THURSDAY: Cloudy, Chance of a Shower north, More Rain South, High: 51, Low: 40.
BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Erie County will receive $16 million in funding from New York State to help combat the opiate epidemic which has already claimed 55 lives in 2017.
New York State has allotted $213 million in the state budget for opiate crisis services statewide.
The funding will be used for outpatient services, treatment, housing, and other services.
State, county, and local officials announced the funding at a press conference at Horizon Health Services on East Amherst Street in Buffalo Thursday.
“I look at this like a disease- it’s a sickness,” New York State Assembly member Crystal Peoples-Strokes said. “You cure sickness by utilizing healing systems.”
Peoples-Strokes added that she will soon be introducing legislation to the NYS Assembly to provide access for anyone to be trained in how to administer Narcan.
“Years ago, we were all taught how to do CPR,” Peoples-Strokes said. “Now, we should all be encouraged to know how to use Narcan, to make sure that these things don’t happen to anyone else.”
Between 2010 and 2015, Erie County experienced a 256% increase in drug deaths, the highest percentage increase in the state. Last month, seven people in Erie County died within a 24-hour period due to a deadly batch of heroin.
NYS Sen. Chris Jacobs, R-Buffalo, said that the way to stop the epidemic in Erie County is by funding programs that have the potential to save lives.
“It’s critical that we direct more resources to this crisis, which touches every race, every neighborhood,” Jacobs said.
Avi Israel, of Buffalo-based Save the Michaels of the World, a group dedicated to raising awareness about prescription drug addiction, also spoke at the press conference. Israel’s son, Michael, took his own life in 2011 after developing an addiction to prescription narcotic painkillers to treat his Crohn’s disease.
“Addiction is in every zip code,” Israel warned.
NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WIVB) — Police in Niagara Falls have arrested a man who was wanted on an Attempted Murder charge in Georgia. Emanuel Williams was arrested Wednesday evening on Pine Avenue.
Police have not said how they learned that Williams was in Niagara Falls. He was sent to jail, and is awaiting extradition back to Georgia.
Stay with News 4, and check WIVB.com for continuing updates.
SANBORN, N.Y. (WIVB) — A college president that has been under fire made a decision about his future before the school could do it for him.
Niagara County Community College President James Klyczek was slammed for how he responded to allegations of sexual assault.
Since the incident, many people at the college said it was hurting the schools’ reputation and students said they didn’t feel as safe.
Wednesday, Dr. Klyczek retired from his position as president hours before the college Board of Trustees were planning to remove him.
Klyczek sent the board chairman an e-mail notifying him of his retirement.
“I was elated, joyful, I feel a new start for the college,” said Professor at NCCC, Phillip Haseley.
“I think now we can move forward and focus on what we’re in business to do and that’s to educate students,” said Lori Townsend, faculty senate president at NCCC.
Recent recordings exposed Klyczek making insulting remarks about the woman who was sexually assaulted on campus last summer.
“The president and his administration ridiculing the victim and calling the family stupid and things of that nature and how dumb can she be and blaming the victim, that is uncalled for,” said Niagara County Legislator, Dennis Virtuoso.
“When you have students saying they will rethink coming here, absolutely I think it’s very detrimental to the institution,” said Townsend.
The board named Dr. Luba Chilwniak, vice president for academic affairs, as officer in charge for up to 90 days. The school will immediately start searching for an interim president and permanent president.
Teachers hope new leadership will repair the schools’ image and relationships with the students.
Faculty members told News 4 this decision gives the college hope, but finding a new president won’t be easy.
“Finding a college president is always difficult. I want that new president to think that this institution revolves around its students, I want that person to have a good working relationship with the faculty and I want them to understand that we can’t focus on just one or two programs,” said Haseley.
The board says its committed to providing students with the safest environment possible moving forward.
Federal authorities were investigating whether or not Klyczek was involved in a bid rigging scheme related to the construction of the Niagara Falls Culinary Institute.
The $26 million facility was completed in 2012.
Related to the selection process for law firms and contractors, News 4 obtained a series of emails from 2010 and 2011, where Klyczek urged staff to push for specific contractors and firms.
Early last month, NCCC’s Board of Trustees voted 5-4 to keep Klyczek there in order to “maintain consistency at the college” and help “ensure students receive the same strong education they have come to expect at NCCC,” a statement from Board Chairman Vincent Ginestre said.
DEPEW, N.Y. (WIVB)- 27-year-old Michael Mohl is fighting for his life after being hit by a pick-up truck while riding his bike with his brother, 25-year-old Phil Mohl.
“He’s in critical condition right now, he’s in the ICU Trauma Unit at ECMC with a broken back and bleeding on the brain,” said their sister Lisa.
Phil’s injuries are less severe; he has a broken wrist, a broken nose, and his missing some teeth, but is in stable condition.
The two were riding their bikes with their other brother Aaron in Depew on Dick Road near George Urban Blvd.
Aaron wasn’t injured.
“He went flying on the other side, by Dick Road,” Aaron said of Phil.
Depew Police have not charged the driver, and said in a press release they don’t believe drugs or alcohol was at play.
They wouldn’t comment further on the investigation.
Lisa Mohl has been at the hospital since she got the call.
“I just totally flipped. At that point I just wanted to go to the hospital and see what was going on.”
The men’s family said they were used to biking that route. They told us they were bringing an x-box to a video game store.
“They love to bike,” their sister Leanne Mohl said.
Neither Michael or Phil were wearing helmets, according to their family.
BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB)- The red mulch dye that transformed the color of Scajaquada Creek in Lancaster and Depew traveled downstream to Forest Lawn Cemetery by Wednesday morning.
The DEC told News 4 runoff from a leaking trailer of red-dyed mulch went into the creek. Superior Pallets, located on Walden Ave. in Lancaster, said it was dyeing the mulch on Monday and the rain washed the dye into the creek.
Buffalo Niagara Riverkeeper was in Forest Lawn Cemetery on Wednesday testing the water. They told News 4 the dye is not toxic and their tests are coming back normal.
Executive Director Jill Jedlicka said this is still a good reminder of how contaminants can travel.
“Whatever happens on land, affects the water,” she said. “When we have rainfalls or snow melts it’s going to carry with it everything it picks up from the land, whether in this instance red dye that was in a storm drain, to pesticides that you apply to your lawn, to oils that have been spilled onto a parking lot or a roadway, to salt that’s laid down.”
The DEC collected samples on Tuesday and told News 4 they will analyze residual water quality impacts caused by the dye.
According to the DEC, the dye had an iron component which is non-toxic. It also had a small ammonia component, which can be toxic at high levels.
The samples the DEC took will help determine if the ammonia levels exceed acceptable standards.
We will keep you updated as those results come back.
FREDONIA, N.Y. (WIVB) – Fredonia Police have announced that they are now wearing body cameras, in advance of the weekend of April 27 to 29.
This weekend is the former traditional weekend of “Fredfest”, a celebration for college students toward the end of the spring semester. SUNY Fredonia canceled all Fredfest related campus activities in 2015.
According to a Fredonia Police statement, officers are wearing the cameras to document events as they occur.
All arrests will be posted to the Fredonia Police’s Facebook page for public viewing, the statement also said.
During this weekend, judges will be holding court throughout the evening and into the night so that suspects can be arraigned and held for bail.
Anyone who is arrested and unable to post bail will be transported to Chautauqua County Jail in Mayville until bail can be secured.
“If you are intending to attend a social event in the Village of Fredonia this weekend, we encourage you to obey the law,” Bradley C. Meyers, Fredonia’s Chief of Police said in a statement. “It would be unfortunate for future employers to see your arrest on social media.”
NIAGARA FALLS, N.Y. (WIVB)- Niagara Falls Police are searching for 24 year-old Kurt Beehler of Niagara Falls to check his welfare.
Beehler is a white male, 6 feet tall, 180lbs with blue eyes, short brown hair and a beard. He was last seen in Niagara Falls on April 8 wearing white jeans, gold t-shirt, black sneakers and a baseball hat.
Police say he may be driving his brown 2005 Mercury Sable with NY license plate AWC1949.
Anyone with information on the whereabouts of Mr. Beehler are encouraged to contact the Niagara Falls Police Dept at 286-4711 or 286-4553.