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Investigators Seeking Help in Bed, Bath & Beyond Fire


Story first reported by The Batavian

It appears -- though not certain at this stage of the ongoing investigation -- that 
the fire that heavily damaged Bed, Bath & Beyond's store in Batavia in January was deliberately set, according to Investigator Kris Kautz, of the Sheriff's Office.

Kautz is requesting the public's help in identifying people who were in the store that day so they can be interviewed.  He's looking to identify the four people who are shown on pictures in the Batavian.Kautz says he would like to talk with them.
 
None of the four are considered suspects.

In fact, the Sheriff's Office has a person of interest in the case, but still needs to gather more evidence.

Kautz says sometimes people can recall things that seem unimportant to them, but would be important to the case.

The retail store in Batavia Towne Center has been closed for months and officials say it will be a long time yet before it reopens.

Investigator Kris Kautz can be reached by calling the Sheriff's Office at (585) 343-5000. 

 
Suspect in Black Friday Accident Arraigned
 
You may recall a two-car accident on Black Friday that injured six people, including two pedestrians.
 
The investigation of the collision revealed that the car being driven by 46-year-old Michael Sanders failed to yield the right of way to a pickup truck as he attempted to turn left onto Oak Street.
 
The truck was driven by 40-year-old Rochester resident Stephanie Parks, along with three passengers.
 
The collision caused Parks to leave the road, striking two female pedestrians.
 
Sanders was allegedly found in possession of Marijuana at the scene of the accident and toxicology reports revealed that he was under the influence of drugs at the time of the collision.
 
It was also learned that Sanders had been previously convicted of DWI within the last 10 years.
 
He and the other five individuals involved in the accident are still being treated for injuries sustained in the November 29th accident.
 
Sanders was arraigned in Batavia City Court on Friday and was remanded to the Genesee County Jail with no bail.
 
Genesee County Public Defender Retires

Genesee county Public Defender Gary Horton is calling it quits.
 
Horton has announced his retirement from county government.
 
He’s worked in the Public Defenders Office for 30 years – the past 20 years in the top position.
 
“Often times our clients are poor,” said Horton. “They don’t have the resources or wherewithal to present themselves well. They come to us with other problems besides their criminal case or their family court case, and often times they stand in court alone. There’s no family there, there is no body there supporting them.”
 
Horton is taking a new job working with the State’s Public Defender’s Association to help provide criminal defense services to veterans.
 
He will maintain an office in Batavia.
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