Press and Sun-Bulletin from Binghamton, New York on June 14, 1983 · 9
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Press and Sun-Bulletin from Binghamton, New York · 9

Binghamton, New York
Issue Date:
Tuesday, June 14, 1983
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Legislative roundup "s Page 4B Recovery on track? x& PageSD section The Evening Press Binghamton. N.Y. June 14, 1983 e Around the region roome Outburst disrupts murder trial Jury quashes insurance claim . BINGHAMTON - After being asked to declare -the community will not tolerate insurance fraud, a "jury in Binghamton yesterday turned down a Binghamton man's claim for payment instead agreeing with an insurance company contention that the man burned down his own house. ;A lawyer for Nationwide Mutual Fire Insurance Tasked the six women on the state Supreme Court jury to find "no cause for action" in a lawsuit Ibrought by James E. Hooker, now of Binghamton. ;C Hooker sued Nationwide after the insurance company refused his claim for payment after his house ;m Conklin burned Aug. 20, 1981. I Thomas Dady of Syracuse, told jurors several ex-!perts on fire origin had substantiated the company's ;claim that Hooker set the fire using flammable fiq-!nids in order to collect insurance money. Rodney A. Richards, lawyer for Hooker, responded that the Conklin fire chief, Harold VanHart, who t examined the fire remains believed it was electrical ui origin. VanHart said that could have been possible even though the power company turned off elec-, tricity to the house more than 24 hours before the i-fire flared up. Grocer's conviction is upheld t. .BINGHAMTON A state appeals court has unanimously upheld the conviction of a Binghamton i grocer convicted three years ago of possessing a truckload of stolen shrimp. Norman S. Oretskin, now 62, proprietor of Norman's Markets in Binghamton and Endwell, faces a prison term of up to five years. ;His lawyer, Earl D. Butler of Vestal, yesterday . jaid he will try to present the case to the Court of Appeals, the state's highest court. I Because the Appellate Division decision was unanimous, Butler can't continue the appeal without permission from one of the justices of the Court of Appeals. On May 17, 1980, a Broome County Court jury took ;20 minutes to decide Oretskin knew a truckload of , shrimp he bought the previous July was stolen. ,;Crabb to review regatta safety : BINGHAMTON - Binghamton Mayor Juanita M. ' Crabb does not think Sunday's drowning necessarily "endangers continuance of the annual cancer benefit, '-Yegatta Regatta, but she said she is concerned "about better water safety at the raft race. City firefighters yesterday recovered the body of . 34-year-old Clarence Farrish of Binghamton. . Farrish is believed to have slipped off a raft and drowned near the finish line of the annual fun and "fund-raising event Sunday. . "We want to sit down with county officials, the ' sheriff amd our police and fire officers and review "the whole safety question. . "I don't hear any talk so far about cancelling the , "regatta. What I do hear are the questions: was this a ' ifluke, that could not have been prevented? Or, could . we all collectively do a better job of making this in- Iherently somewhat dangerous event safer?" Crabb ,;said. :Pay plan endangers hospices .BINGHAMTON - Dr. Robert Enck, the head of "cancer treatment at Our Lady of Lourdes Memorial 'Hospital in Binghamton, says there is a deadly irony in the Reagan administration's plans to pay for hospice care. , ' Hospices at Lourdes and elsewhere are set up as 'alternatives to lengthy and costly hospital stays. . ;Dying patients are allowed to live out their last days "at home as naturally and for as long as possible. Since 601 patients spent only a short time in a Lourdes hospital bed since hospice began there in 1980, hospice care limited medical costs as well as .provided a more humane form of treatment, Enck ;.says. Nevertheless, Medicare regulations proposed by ('the Reagan administration under a cost-reimburse- tment law cover only 81 percent of the average cost I pi hospice care at Lourdes and 11 other sites under study by state If regulations written by the federal (Department of Health and Human Services to imple-;ment the law take effect this fall, Enck says hospice programs will die because patients will stay in the more expensive hospital beds where Medicare, the Tederal health insurance for the elderly, pays nearly all costs. ''Union patrols work the streets i; ENDWELL The streets are dark and quiet be-i Jtween midnight and 5 a.m. in Endwell, West Corners and Westover. f J Two uniformed Town of Union security patrol offi-Vcers in a Chevrolet Chevette drive up and down jitreets. J Unarmed, they are there to watch for criminal activity in the incorporated parts of the town and re- port anything suspicious to police. J The late shift began in May, a result of a spree of 'arson fires that caused Endwell residents to stay up J: nights watching for the arsonist. At first it was a weekend shift. This month the late-night patrols are put seven days a week and will continue through the summer. " The night patrol basically looks for teen-agers who are partying or vandalizing. iTomorrow ; Details on tonight's Oneonta Common Council dis-, -cussion of plans for a downtown parking ramp-mall .walkway. ilnside Births 2B '.-Business 7B 1-Obits 6B .IState 4B,5B,6B,8B By JIM WRIGHT NORWICH The second-degree murder trial of Herman D. Neu was disrupted for a brief period this morning when a witness was asked if he was the one who had killed an Afton convenience store clerk. Neu, 29, of North Sanford Road, Deposit, is being tried in Chenango County Court on a second-degree murder charge and five robbery counts in the Sept. 16, 1982, robbery of The Country Store in Afton during which clerk James F. Wilcox, 19, of Afton, was shot and killed. The trial entered its seventh day this morn ing as the defense prepared to press its case. August bantangelo, suspected of providing Neu with the gun used in the shooting, took the stand this morning as the first witness called by defense lawyer Edward S. Nelson. lne brief outburst in the courtroom came about 10:10 a.m. when Santangelo was asked il he was the one who had killed Wilcox. Dis trict Attorney Kevin M. Dowd immediately objected and Santangelo leaped forward out of the witness chair. He then muttered several unintelligible comments before resuming his seat. Judge Irad S. Ingraham then quieted Santangelo by telling him, "Keep your mouth shut until I tell you to speak. This is a court of law, not the street. And if you don't obey it, you will sit over in the county jail. The courtroom proceedings then were delayed while lawyers discussed whether Santangelo should continue to testify. The prosecution yesterday rested its case in the seven-day trial after hearing the testimony of Thomas H. Marlowe of Deposit, a suspected accomplice of Neu. The trial could go to a jury of seven women and five men later today. Nelson said he would complete his witnesses this morning. At the close of the prosecution's case yesterday after calling 29 witnesses and showing 28 exhibits, Ingraham rejected a motion by Nelson to have the jury view the Afton store at 9:30 p.m. Marlowe yesterday told the jury that Neu said "he should have killed me Sept. 21 when he had the chance" while the two were being held in separate cells in the Chenango County Correctional Facility. The conversations were made possible by talking through a ventilation system, according to law enforcement personnel. Marlowe was jailed on the second floor and Neu was held in a first-floor cell at the jail in December and January. "He said 'a ghost does not take the witness stand,'" Marlowe said yesterday as the prosecution's main witness. Marlowe also testified yesterday about the events surrounding the slaying of Wilcox. "When I asked him (Neu) if he shot anybody, he said, 'yes, the clerk. I shot him in the chest first, and then he spun around and I shot him in the side of the head. He said he didn't want any witnesses,'" Marlowe testified. Neu showed no signs of emotion throughout the testimony. Marlowe, the main witness yesterday, also testified to having a fear of Santangelo. Marlowe said he felt "my family's life was more in danger than ever before." Marlowe also testified that Santangelo beat up an investigator working on the case and also linked him to "blooding up a friend," Robert Douglas "to make an impression on Dennis and myself." Marlowe also said Santangelo chased his wife down the street while she screammed hysterically. Marlowe twice claimed the fifth amendment when asked about the purchase of drugs in the Rochester area. Ingraham directed him to answer the questions, but Marlow said he . couldn't remember. Marlowe once said it was ' -not his brother and then added, "what's in a ! name." , Marlowe said of Neu, "I believe if he had a chance, he'd kill me in a minute." : In discussing the night of the robbery, Mar- lowe said "Neu told me he wanted to rob a ! - Suit protests reassessment By JIM WRIGHT NORWICH The just-completed assessment re view in the City of Norwich is being challenged in state Supreme Court by a city taxpayer. A show cause order seeking to have the 1983 as sessment rolls set aside in favor of the 1982 roll will be argued before Justice Albert E. Tait Jr., in Wampsville in Madison County next week. The suit was brought by Catherine B. Nelson, of 75 S. Broad St., Norwich. Arguments on the order to show cause will be debated in court at 9 : 30 a.m. June 21 the day the city had set aside to hear assessment greivances. Nelson s petition also calls aks that Assessor Bar bara M. Phillips be prevented from preparing another 1983 assessment roll without mailing assessment disclosure notices 60 days before the roll's release as required by the Real Property Tax Law. Nelson s suit contends the required notices, pro viding property owners with projected assessment increases, were not mailed by Phillips. Nelson also seeks to bar Phillips from further or future assessment updates without revaluing all res idential, commercial and industrial property. Nelson is the wife of attorney Edward S. Nelson who will argue the case. Papers were served late yesterday on Phillips . Grievance Day in the city already has been ex tended by several days because of the revaluation of a large number of the city's 2,000 properties. Phillips said last week the city assessment in creases increased by $20 million. Catherine Nelson s petition contended that resi dential property was revalued in "a discriminatory manner. She also stated attempts to review the tenative as sessment rolls were fruitless as several hundred people waited in line for similiar inspections. She said the congestion continued for at least three days. Nelson s petition contends frumps did noi conduct an independent review of commercial and industrial property. l ne Nelsons property ana resiaenuai assessment increased from $70,000 to $150,000. The court Daoers also contain statements from , Richard Cooley, a local real estate broker, who stated that during October 1982 a Chenango Memori- l al Hospital Auxiliary tour of city homes for the bene fit of the hospital included Phillips. He said mat dur ing March or April Phillips, during a discussion witn him about the pending release of assessment roll, said she had taken the tour and that every home on the tour would receive an increase in assessment. Colley said, "she (Phillips) particularly men tioned the home of Catherine Nelson." City attorney James Downey will represent me city. store in the Afton area, that there were a cou- j pie down that way." a. He demed knowing that Neu had a gun until J .y1 rc uuueu u uui as uiey ciiieicu niiuu. J 1 111, iL - i i 11 1 tie iook me gun ana went across me ; bridge. He said he was going to rob the store and would be back in a minute ... I saw him I halfway across the bridge and then he went out of sight ... It sounded at the time like firecrackers, but I knew what it was, but it j took me a second to realize it," Marlowe said. ; Marlowe said he never saw Neu enter the ' Afton Country Store. j ? ! .i-r -" n ,fi.iiir- Y -v lft . rrZ r- - r !;. - 1 w.,. vi f-r''j tiVSVi felony counts, ranging I tw - 1" . J w i. t4 degree kidnapping to " ' - ' rLz)t fl -, ? . " X use of a firearm. Th , - . rAfi-y . an AprU 25 takeover Li: . t . c '!. DCMOTHTCaUTI Summer spot The Ceas mill dam on Wright's Brook in Bloomville provides a picture postcard view of one of Delaware County's natural attractions. Delaware candidates skip endorsements By MARCIA KOZUBEK DELHI Delaware County Sheriff Levon A. Telian decided not to seek the endorsement of the county Republican committee at a meeting last night at the Delhi Village Hall. He told committemen that he had "faith in the American electorial process" and would seek their endorsement after the primary if he wins. Challenger Paul Peterson, former Walton police chief, took the same position in not seeking an endorsement. The primary is scheduled for Sept. 13. Committeemen endorsed 12-year Treasurer Cyrus Schoonmaker of East Meredith and nine-year District Attorney Malcolm C. Hughes of Margaret ville. The three-year term of treasurer carries an annual salary of $22,000 while the part-time district attorney's post has an annual salary of $18,000. Elections officials previously said the district attorney's term of office has been extended from three to four years by state legislators. Lamont Martin of Sidney is the Democratic candidate for the sheriff's position. Police officer requests new title By SUE BARKER BAINBRIDGE Charles H. Mangels prob ably wouldn't agree with Shakespeare's maxim: "A rose by any other name would smell as sweet." Mangels, who last month was named "offi cer in charge" of the Bainbridge police department, last night told members of the village board he wants to trade the title for one of "acting police chief." Mangels was lured at a salary ot siz,5on per year, plus a $1,200 per year bonus as "officer in charge," to replace former acting police chief Stanton E. Knapp. When Mangels was hired, Mayor Louis Caracciolo told the board Mangels wouldn't be appointed acting police chief because the title wasn't accurate. The mayor is really the chief of the police department, Caracciolo contended. Last night, Mangels told board members that the title "officer in charge" isn't recognized by other law enforcement agencies. Because of that, he says the title creates more questions than it answers. The biggest question is, "Officer in charge of what?" Mangels said. Rather than identifying himself with a title other law enforcement personnel can't relate to. Mangels said he s tried using the more familiar title of patrolman when dealing with other police departments. Unfortunately, getting the chief of a large police department to answer or return a pa trolman's call is no easy task, he said. You say you re Patrolman Mangels and they don't want to talk to you. You're just a lowly little patrolman," he said. Public Safety Committee Chairwoman Lois Umbra and member Richard Komatinsky agreed that Mangels' title should be changed. "I've heard static about it," Umbra said. "The people don't like it." Caracciolo noted that the village police department is now subject to civil service regulations. The civil service system doesn't recognize the title of acting police chief, he said. That, hasn't stopped other municipalities, such as Greene and Afton, from confering the title on the senior patrolman in their departments, Mangels said. "Officer in charge is just playing with words," he said. "I'm doing the work of the police chief and I think I should have the1 title." If naming Mangels acting police chief would cause problems, Komatinsky suggested the title of "captain" might be a suitable alternative. Mangels told board members Steven F. Benenati, the Chenango County personnel director, had told him there's no reason why the village board couldn't name Mangels acting police chief if it chose to do so. Caracciolo still questioned the move. "The man's on six-month probation," he said. "Maybe you want to wait until the six months are over?" "I'd recommend we give him the title of captain and be done with it," Umbra said. Caracciolo instead suggested Umbra and Komatinsky contact Benenati to discuss the matter. He also suggested the issue be tabled until the board's June 27 meeting when the public safety committee could provide a com plete recommendation. In related business, members of the board last night voted unanimously to hire a second full-time patrolman. The move returned the village police department to full-strength with two full-time and four part-time patrolmen. Gregory C. Holt, 24, of RD1, Mount Upton, was hired, effective today, at a starting salary of $10,500 per year. Once Holt completes course work required for state certification as a patrolman, he will be in line for a $1,500 per year raise, board members decided. Although the village police department last month lost the services of 25 unpaid auxiliary police members, Mangels said he doesn't - foresee the loss having a drastic impact on police protection in the village. "I've had some complaints from the men about not having two-man (night) patrols. But what village around here does?" he asked. The auxiliary police were members of the Town of Bainbridge civil defense organization. After the town board last month voted to rescind authorization for members of the . group to wear sidearms, members, as a protest, voted to stop providing any form of police protection. Gladstone i denies guilt j By SUE BARKER ' NORWICH Lawrence B. Gladstone's lawyer yesterday said he still expects his client to eventually be certified incompetent toi stand trial on kidnapping and firearms; charges. In Chenango County Court yesterday Glad stone, 49, of Preston, pleaded not guilty to 22 ! from 19 counts of first: i two counts of criminal - : charges stemmed from of the Chenango County Office Building. At least 22 persons were held hostage during the eight-and-a-half houf seige. . Gladstone had been scheduled to be ar. raigned last month. ' Gladstone's arraignment was postponed until yesterday after his court-appointed defense attorney, Peter J. McBride, of Norwich, told the court he expected psychiatrists at the state Forensic Psychiatric Center at Hutch-ings to certify his client incompetent to stand trial. - . Gladstone spent two-and-a-half-weeks at Hutchings after psychiatrists with the Chenango County Mental Health Clinic in Norwich, determined that he was depressed and a danger to himself. Norwich psychiatrists said the depression probably was a result of a hunger strike Gladstone had maintained for 22-days in the Chenango County Correctional Facility after his arrest. McBride yesterday said doctors at Hutchings did supply a psychiatric report on Gladstone, but said the results of the report were inconclusive. "The report said they have reason to believe he is incompetent," McBride said. "They did not certify him." Confusion over the authorization used to transfer Gladstone from the Chenango County Correctional Facility to Hutchings may have kept the center's doctors from actually certifying Gladstone incompetent to stand trial, McBride said. Although McBride had a court order allowing a complete psychiatric evaluation of Gladstone, Chenango County Sheriff Morris L. Ec-cleston said the man was temporarily shifted to Hutchings under a provision of state corrections law. That provision apparently didn't allow doctors at Hutchings to do a complete forensic psychiatric evaluation, McBride said. Gladstone doesn't want McBride to pursue a psychiatric defense, McBride said. "I had every intention of going in there and pleading not guilty by reason of insanity, but Larry won't have it," McBride said. "He specifically forbade me to use that plea." Despite Gladstone's wishes, McBride said he plans to arrange for a full psychiatric evaluation of his client soon. McBride said he is confident Gladstone will be certified incompetent to stand trial as a result of such an evaluation. Chenango chamber starts county membership drive NORWICH The Chenango County Chamber of Commerce is launching a major membership drive this week with a goal of signing up 100 new members throughout the county-Businesses being sought for membership are small- to medium-sized retail and wholesale firms. N.Y. numbers game Ceremonies set to mark elderly housing site 856 Win Four: 3964 If you have a story idea, question or comment resrardimr news from Chenango, Del- aware. Otsem and Tioga counties, call : State Editor Dave Edick or Assistant State Editor Marty Doorey at 798-1151 between 6 a.m. and 4 p.m. NORWICH The United Methodist Homes for the Aging's sign posting and site dedication ceremony for the future Grace View Manor elderly apartment complex is set for 11 a.m. tomorrow at the complex's Calvary Drive site. The United Methodist Homes for the Aging of the Wyoming Conference is the sponsoring organization for the project. The organization now has homes that serve 750 elderly in five locations in New York and Pennsylvania. Several dignitaries, including Mayor Ker-mit C. Jones will address the occasion. Construction is expected to begin late this summer pending final approval by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. The elderly resident apartments willbe the first in the area sponsored by the agency. - 1 Rodent 'lunch' costs $200 By MARCIA KOZUBEK DELHI A ravenous and pregnant woodchuck did $200 worth of damage to a Delaware County Department of Social Services car when it chewed up parts of the car's engine system. William R. Moon, county social services commissioner, said the woodchuck was found inside the car's engine compartment June 3 by child protective caseworker Mel-vin Fuller. Moon said that Fuller discovered the hungry rodent when he attempted to start the car in the county parking lot that borders the Delaware River. Hearing strange noises, Fuller looked under the hood and found the woodchuck chewing on the ignition wires. After persuading the pregnant animal to leave. Fuller attempted "to start the car a second time. Once again strange and ominous noises came from the engine compartment. Once again Fuller checked under the hood and found the woodchuck gnawing on the radiator hose. "She appeared to have a great attraction for rubber," Moon said. Fuller chased the ravenous rodent away several times and she returned each time until she was live-trapped and relocated to theriverbank. Damage to the vehicle was estimated at $200. An insurance adjuster with Mang Associates in Sidney told Moon the incident will find its way into a book he is compiling about strange claims he has investigated. : K ...... . -t

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