Dunkirk Police and STRDTF Arrest Two for the Sale of Drugs

For the past several months members of the Dunkirk Police Department and the Southern Tier Regional Drug task Force have been conducting investigations into the sale and distribution of illegal narcotics in the City of Dunkirk.

One investigation led to arrest warrants being issued for Alex Diaz Torres, age 32, of Dunkirk, NY. Arrest warrants were issued by the City of Dunkirk Court for the Charges of Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in the 3rd degree and Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the 3rd degree.  On November 15, 2019, at about 7:05 PM, members of the Dunkirk Police Department and the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task force located and arrested Alex Diaz Torres at 47 East Second St. in the City of Dunkirk. Torres was taken into custody without incident.

In a separate investigation, the Chautauqua County Grand Jury issued secret indictment warrants for Carmelo Cruz, age 55, of Dunkirk, NY, charging him with Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in the 3rd Degree and Criminal Possession of Controlled Substance in the 3rd Degree. On November 18, 2019 at approximately 8:45 AM, members of the Dunkirk Police Department observed Carmelo Cruz traveling in a vehicle on Lake Shore Drive in the City of Dunkirk. The vehicle was stopped and Carmelo Cruz was taken into custody without incident. Cruz will be held at the Chautauqua County Jail pending arraignment.

The Dunkirk Police Department, Chautauqua County Sheriff’s Office and the Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force encourage members of the community to report any suspicious or illegal activity.

Dunkirk Police Department: (716) 363-0313
Southern Tier Regional Drug Task Force: (716) 664-2420

Lakefront Blvd Closed Until Further Notice

Lakefront Blvd. between North Beagle and North Serval Streets has been closed for the Winter Season and on-going repairs to the seawall. The City of Dunkirk Department of Public Works has completed the placement of signage along Lakefront Blvd. as well as Pine Street North on all the side Streets in that First Ward area and have additionally placed jersey barriers.  Vehicles may travel North from Pine Street for local residential traffic only.

Lakefront Blvd. has been closed for the purpose of traffic and public safety. The roadway can become very slippery and impassable due to ice and snow build up from the lake over-spray.  The Department of Public Works will NOT be performing regular road clearing maintenance of Lakefront Blvd. during the Winter Season.

Operators of vehicles that pass the posted signs and jersey barriers can be charged with a violation under the Vehicle and Traffic law and may be subject to legal liability as well. We are asking all residents to please cooperate by not driving on the roadway until the Spring when the DPW opens the roadway back up to regular traffic.

Winter Parking

Alternate and Overnight Parking regulations on Streets in the City of Dunkirk will be changing in November to assist snow removal efforts during the Winter Months.

Overnight Parking rules go into effect Sunday November 3rd  2019 and stay in effect thru Saturday April 4th 2020. For overnight regulations parking is prohibited on the following Streets from 3:30AM – 7:00AM.

  • Brigham Rd. from Lakeshore Dr. South to the City Line.
  • Brooks Ave.
  • Canary St.
  • Central Ave. from City Pier to the City Line.
  • Columbus Ave.
  • Doughty St.
  • Eagle St. between 5th & 6th Streets, between Lakeshore Dr. West & Second Street
  • Chestnut St. from Fizell St. West to Warsaw St.
  • 6th St. from Main St. East to Maple Ave.
  • Franklin Ave. from Main St. South to Wright St.
  • Franklin Ave. from Talcott St. South to City Line
  • Irving Pl.
  • Lakeshore Dr. from City Line to City Line.
  • Lamphere St. from 7th South to City Line.
  • Lark St.
  • Leopard St.
  • Lynx St.
  • Main St. from Lakefront Blvd. South to 6th St.
  • Main St. Extension from Newton St. South to City Line.
  • Maple Ave. from Main St. South to Talcott St.
  • Middle Rd. from Moffat St. East to City Line.
  • Nichols Ave.
  • North Beaver St.
  • Pelican St.
  • Plover St.
  • Point Dr. North
  • Point Dr. West
  • Roosevelt Ave.
  • Ruggles St. from Main St. South to Wright St.
  • Taft Pl.
  • Talcott St. from Roberts Rd. West to Franklin Ave.
  • Temple St. from 4th. North to CSX
  • 3rd St. from Main St. West to Central Ave.
  • Washington Ave. from 3rd St. South to 4th St.
  • 2nd St. from Brigham Rd. West to Brooks Ave.
  • 7th St. from Woodrow Ave. West to Brigham Rd.
  • Woodrow Ave. from Lucas Ave. North to  6th  St.

All other Streets not subject to the above listed Overnight Parking are subject to Alternate Parking Regulations. The Alternate Parking Regulations change from Weekly to Daily for the Winter Months. Effective Sunday November 3rd  2019 at 5:00PM and continuing thru Saturday April 4th 2020 vehicles shall be parked only on the Odd-Numbered side of the Street on Odd-Numbered Days  and only on the Even-Numbered side of the Street on Even-Numbered Days. The date of the day after the hour of 5:00PM will determine the side which Parking is allowed.

Warning notices will be issued for a short period of time after which strict enforcement will begin by issuance of Parking Summonses. Vehicles in violation of Overnight, Alternate or any other posted Regulations which hamper Snow Removal Efforts by Public Works or pose a hazard for access of Emergency Vehicles will be towed at the owner’s expense. We also remind motorists that vehicles which block sidewalks and hamper sidewalk plowing will also be ticketed and towed if necessary. Please pay attention to City Snow Plow operators and assist them with their efforts by giving them the right of way during snow storms.

This past Winter Season saw a lot of snowfall and we thank our residents for their cooperation in getting their vehicles moved in a timely manner and look forward to their cooperation again this Winter Season. The Dunkirk Police Department is again asking for everyone’s cooperation with Parking Regulations and assisting us in making the City a safe place for all those who live, work and visit here. Any questions about parking regulations can be directed to the Communications Desk at 366-2266.

Possible Wind and Heavy Rain Weather Event

Afternoon briefing from the National Weather Service notes that there is a High Wind Warning and Lakeshore Flood Warning in effect for later this afternoon thru Friday Morning. Lakeshore Erosion, Heavy Rain and Winds possibly reaching 65MPH are a possibility of this Impending Storm.

We want to remind those travelling along the immediate Lakeshore, City Pier and Flood Prone areas that there may be hazardous conditions.  Access to the City Pier, Lakefront Blvd,  Point Drive Streets and Crooked Brook areas may be limited travel areas or closed to vehicular traffic.

We remind local residents to not drive through any areas with high flood water as your vehicle may become submerged. Turn around on any flooded Street or area as Safety is the first priority.

DPW will be doing their best to get and keep Streets open during this storm and as it subsides. Please stay out of any storm damaged areas and let them do their job.

We appreciate our Communities Cooperation should this storm develop as predicted.

Halloween Safety Tips

Halloween can be a very fun holiday for everyone especially kids, to make the holiday a treat instead of a trick please follow these safety tips.

Halloween Costumes:

  • Check that the costumes are flame retardant.
  • Keep costumes short to prevent trips, falls and other bumps in the night.
  • Try using make-up instead of masks, a mask can be uncomfortable and obstruct a child’s view when crossing streets and using steps.
  • Wear light colored costumes and use reflective material or tape, this will make children more visible after dark.
  • Avoid costumes that have weapons, if they are part of the costume make sure they are made from cardboard or other flexible material.

Trick or Treating:

  • Never let children go out alone.
  • Young children should be with parents, older kids with friends.
  • Trick or treat in groups.
  • Map a route ahead of time and make sure parents know the route.
  • Stop only at familiar houses with lights on.
  • Try and trick or treat while it’s still light out.
  • Stay in well lighted areas and carry a flashlight.
  • Teach children to Never, Never go into a strangers house or accept a ride from a stranger. If someone makes them feel uncomfortable or tries to grab them, children should scream, yell, fight and kick to get away. They should then find a parent or adult they trust and tell them what happened as soon as possible.
  • If your child has a cell phone make sure they are familiar with local emergency numbers and the proper use of 911 and what information they need to give First Responders.
  • Walk on sidewalks and cross at crosswalks.


  • Teach children to not eat any treats until they get home.
  • To avoid temptation give children a snack before they go out.
  • Check all treats at home and eat only unopened candy and treats in original wrappers. Carefully inspect fruit and homemade treats and ask who gave them.

The City council has set trick or treating hours of 4:00PM until 7:00PM on Halloween. We urge everyone to please observe these guidelines.

The City Youth and Recreation Department will be hosting a Halloween Party for children from 3PM-5PM on October 31st at City Hall in the Mayors Conference Room.

Halloween can be a lot of fun for kids and parents alike. Take a few extra minutes and remember the tricks and treats of playing it safe. A lot of the safety rules that apply to Halloween are good rules to follow all the time.

Our Neighborhood Watch groups will be out keeping an eye on their neighborhoods for criminal activity and reporting to the Police Department. Anyone who witnesses or suspects any criminal activity can dial 911 for emergencies and we will send an Officer to check on it.

Have a happy and safe Halloween.

Prescription Drop Off

The City of Dunkirk Police Department and WCA ALSTAR Ambulance  in cooperation with the Federal Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) are coordinating a North County location for National Prescription Drug Drop Off Day on Saturday October 26, 2019 from 10AM-2PM.

WCA ALSTAR Services has again graciously provided their North Headquarters for the drive in drop off location. ALSTAR North is located behind School # 3 at Rt. 60 and Orchard Street in the City of Dunkirk. The prescriptions can be dropped off with no questions asked.

This is a very important program because any unused or expired prescription medications are a public safety issues leading to accidental poisoning, overdose and abuse. In many States deaths from Prescription drugs now exceeds those from motor vehicles accidents with opiate painkillers like Vicodin, Percocet and Oxycontin leading abuse. Recent reports show that the number of people seeking treatment for painkiller addiction had increased 400 % within the last 10 years.  Reports show that one in 10  12th grade students used pharmaceutical narcotic pain killers for non medical use. The reports also show that the majority of the teenagers (62%) using prescription drugs got them from family and friends including from medicine cabinets in their own homes. Unintentional overdose deaths from prescription opiods increased 175% over a 5 year period.   Recent reports note that there were 6.2 Million Americans aged 12 years and older who abused prescription drugs within the past month with 7 of the 10 most commonly abused drugs by teenagers being prescription medicine.

Proper disposal of unused or expired prescription drugs can eliminate temptation for abuse and the temptation for them to be stolen from a residence. The proper disposal also does not affect the environment which can happen if they are flushed into the sewer systems.  Most importantly proper disposal can help lower the deaths rate related to overdose and abuse, especially in our children and young adults.

Please take the time to empty your shelves and cabinets from unused and expired prescription drugs and bring them to the drop off point at ALSTAR Ambulance behind School # 3 at Rt. 60 and Orchard Street in Dunkirk on Saturday October 26th   from 10AM-2PM.  Also we ask that if you have parents or grandparents that you check with them as well to make sure they sort through any prescriptions they may have that are not needed or have expired. Again this will be a drive in and drop off with no questions asked.

Dunkirk Police SRT Gets Armored Truck

The City of Dunkirk Police Department’s SRT Tactical Unit has finished a year-long project of refurbishing an Armored Truck for the Team and recently dedicated the Truck to the individuals that made the project possible.


SRT Unit Supervisor Sgt. Mark Gruber approached SRT Unit Commander Lt. Mark Timmerman, Chief Dave Ortolano and Captain Rich Kaus with an idea to apply for a Grant with the Brinks Security Corporation to receive one of their Armored Trucks for our Team at no cost. The idea was approved by the Chief with Mayor Willie Rosas on board to assist with any needs for the Project.


When the Truck was delivered Sgt. Gruber, Lt. Timmerman and Chief Dave Ortolano began the process of planning to refurbish the vehicle to fit the SRT Unit needs. The work started with our City Welder/Fabricator Ken Sek and City Mechanic Jason Schrantz completely gutting the inside of the Truck and modifications were made to the inside and outside of the Truck building it to the specifications that we needed for our Team.  They also did mechanical work, installed the Emergency Lighting, Communications Equipment and a Winch. The work done by Ken and Jason absolutely exceeded our expectations and was done with minimal costs.


Once the modifications and installation of equipment was completed at the City Garage the Truck was taken to Mark Yerico of MRY Collision who donated 50% of the cost for the body preparation and painting of the truck to our specifications. Again our expectations were exceeded by the work Mark did for us.


In the final step of the process the Truck was taken to Cody and Taylor Britton of Southpaw Stripes & Signs to have the lettering done. 

On behalf of the City of Dunkirk Police Department and the Community we serve we cannot thank Ken Sek, Jason Schrantz,  Mark Yerico, Cody Britton and Taylor Britton enough for the outstanding work they did at a minimal cost to our Department. Without them and the work they did we would not be able to have this valuable piece of equipment. We are very grateful that we had the support we needed from our City Garage and Community Businesses for such an important project.   Job Well Done !!!! 

The acquisition and refurbishing of the SRT Truck will greatly increase the safety of our SRT Unit Members and the Community we serve for response to Serving Narcotics Warrants and Active Tactical Situations. 

Pictured in Photos:

SRT Unit members with Taylor Britton, Mark Yerico, Jason Schrantz, Ken Sek

“Hazelton Dog Park” Opens

Dunkirk Police Officers attended with the Hazelton family, the official opening of the “Hazelton Dog Park,” named after Dunkirk K-9 Officer Matthew Hazelton who passed away recently.

“I am very pleased that the City of Dunkirk has dedicated the new Dog Park in memory of Officer Matthew Hazelton.  Officer Hazelton was a dedicated Police Officer and K-9 handler.  He was a very well-respected Police Officer who served the citizens of our community with Dedication, Integrity, Honor and Respect.  Matthew will always be in our hearts and never be forgotten and the dedication of the Dog Park in his name will be a permanent memorial to the service he gave to our community,” said Chief David Ortolano.

“The dog park has been an amazing addition to the community.  We are so appreciative and grateful that the city chose to name the park in memory of Matt and Nico.  They are forever in our hearts and this was an incredibly special way to honor them both,” said Jennifer Hazelton.

DPD Issues School Safety Reminders

Summer vacation has ended and school will be starting September 5th for students. The City of Dunkirk Police Department is reminding everyone to pay close attention to children as they walk to and from school and to obey the laws regarding speed in school zones, walking in the roadway, riding bicycles and yielding the right of way to stopped school buses.

School Zones Speeds 2

The speed limit in school zones is 15MPH for all School areas except 20MPH on Rt.# 60 at School # 3 and 25MPH on Rt.# 5 at School # 7 from 7:00 AM until 3:30 PM  any day that  school is in session. The Police Department will have patrol officers checking the school zone areas for violations of the speed limit. Our priority in enforcing this law is for the safety of the children. As always voluntary compliance is very helpful but there will be strict enforcement and traffic summonses will be issued for the safety of the children. The few seconds it takes to slow down will not disrupt anyone’s day.

We want everyone to be aware and pay close attention to children who are walking to and from school, especially at intersections and crosswalks. A reminder to all motorists to please pay attention to and follow all directions of the school crossing guards and stop1police officers who are at the intersections directing the children safely across the streets. Failure to stop as directed can result in the arrest of the vehicle operator. Please plan a little extra time to get to your destination while School is in session.

A very strict warning to motorists that they must stop for school buses that have their red lights flashing. All vehicles on the highway operating in any direction on single lane or multiple lane highways must stop before their vehicle reaches the school bus when the bus has it’s red flashing lights in operation. The operators of vehicles cannot proceed past any such bus until the lights stop flashing or they are signaled by the bus driver or a police officer to safely proceed. Violations of this law will be strictly dealt with and the punishment can range from heavy fines to jail time or a combination of both. We take violations of this law very seriously. Throughout the school year we will have patrols checking on school bus operations to ensure safety.


Parents are urged to talk with their children about the dangers of them talking with or getting into a vehicle with any strangers or entering a house of a stranger.  If approached by any stranger teach your children to run away, scream, yell and find a teacher, police officer, crossing guard or an adult they know and tell them what happened. If your child has a cell phone talk with them about being familiar with street names and calling 911 for help in an emergency.

Parents who drop their children off at the Middle School on Eagle Street are to drop off only on the West side (the same side as the School) as dropping off on the East side will put the children in danger crossing the road in front of traffic and trying to make a left turn into the loop causes traffic back up and safety issues as well. There is signage in place that prohibits the left turn into the bus loop. We will have patrols in the area to monitor this situation.

DMS map parking copy

We are also issuing a reminder to everyone about walking in the roadway. This is very dangerous and if traffic is obstructed it is a violation of the New York State Vehicle and Traffic Law and also the Penal Law depending upon the situation. Anyone riding a bicycle is reminded that they must follow all the rules of the road as if they were a vehicle. We will have enforcement in all areas to maintain vehicular, pedestrian and bicycle safety.

Again we are urging parents to talk with their children about these safety issues. By spending a few extra minutes as drivers of vehicles or as parents talking with their children everyone can help make school a safe, enjoyable learning experience. The children of today hold the key to the future and we must take the extra precautions to protect them and keep them safe.

National Night Out Thank You

National Night Out Slide show:

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As we close out our 26th year of National Night Out and begin to prepare for the 27th edition we want to take a few minutes to reflect on this year’s amazing program. Although the weather at first did not look like it was going to cooperate we made the decision to go ahead with our program as we have never missed a Night Out in 26 years. Even with the rain coming down people started to trickle in and as the rain stopped there was a steady stream of citizens from Children to Senior Citizens pouring into Washington Park with several hundred filling the Park during the evening. What a testament to the resilience of our residents and their dedication to be a part of Public Safety in our Community.

We saw a lot of new faces and families at the event as well as a many familiar faces. There was a mix of citizens of all ages from babies to senior citizens, especially a large increase in young children and that is very encouraging and exactly what we want to see.  Unfortunately in Law Enforcement most of our interactions are not in a positive setting. National Night Out is one of our programs that gives us the opportunity to have positive interaction with citizens, families and especially children and build a relationship that teaches the value of trusting in the Police Department. We constantly work with the Community to send the message that we are here to keep it safe and the best way to do that is to have Community support starting with the children all the way to our senior citizens. A strong partnership within the Community is truly our best weapon in keeping it safe, it only takes a few minutes of time to get involved and make a difference. Without the help of the Community we would not have the success that we do in public safety.

With recent tragedies within our Law Enforcement family nationwide it is now more important than ever to have this great relationship with our Community that we enjoy so very much. We constantly receive all kinds of baked goods and we have a wall that is full of thank you cards in the Police Station. We have children waiving at patrol cars and there are so many citizens stopping our Officers to just say thank you and telling us they appreciate what we do that we can’t even keep count.  These are just a few examples of the acts of kindness that have been shown to the Police Department. This support from our Community is second to none and we are very proud to have them standing behind us, it truly is a great feeling to know they take the time to let us know they appreciate what we do and in turn we will continue to do our best for them each and every day. This truly is what National Night Out is all about !!

We want to commend every citizen that gets involved in crime prevention and steps up to make this Community a safer place. We want to especially thank our Night Out Committee  Arlene Langendorfer, Donna Howlett, Ruby Green, Lorie Michalak Herman and Martha DeJesus for their hard work. Most of them have been part of this program for over 15 years and Arlene has been part of this program for the entire 26 years. Their dedication is amazing and we could not do this program without them. We want to also commend all of our Police Officers who have given their time to this program every year for the last 26 years, the large number of Officers who volunteer to participate each year shows their dedication to the Community. This is their night to have positive interaction and show the fun human side of who we are as well. We also want to thank Chief Mike Edwards and the Dunkirk Fire Department for their many years of participation, we have an amazing relationship with our Fire Department and they have been a very welcomed addition to our Night Out activities.

The Dunkirk Police Department and Night Out Committee would like to thank all of our business sponsors for their support and dedication over the years, without them we would not enjoy the success we have. Our many thanks to Blasdell Pizza – Mark Dulak, Tops Markets – Scott Obert, WalMart – Brad Balentine,  Southpaw Signs – Cody Britton,   Paper Factory – Bruce & Ann Mulkin,  McDonalds Restaurant – Sam Giambrone,  G&E Tents – Bob Bankowski & Bob Karin, Awesome Bouncers – Jason, JJ & Sherry Genovese, Save a Lot – Kevin Connelly & James Bartlett, Atlas Comfort Cabins- Roger Gloss, The Rising Band – Frank Beach, Edwin Ramos, Don Hinman, Jamie Warrick & Tom Dawes,  Family Video – Allison Bonetsky,  Tim Hortons – Dave & Gina Kron, Robo Mart –Sammie Greenman,  One Stop Food Mart -Ginger Pokoj, Dollar General – Doreen Schwartz & Dawn Esperanza, Millers Apparel – Shirlene Miller  and Photographer Ron Szot.  A special thanks to WDOE – Dave Rowley, The Observer – Jo Ward, Mayor Willie Rosas, the Common Council and the Parks, Recreation and DPW Departments for all their support. This is truly a Community event and with everyone working together we will continue to make a difference in making our Community a safer place to live, visit and work in.

Our many Thanks to everyone involved with this program !!