IRS Scam Alert

The Dunkirk Police Department wants to warn the community regarding an “IRS” Scam. A city resident received a phone call from a person identifying themselves as an “IRS Agent.”  The person directed the resident to withdraw all of their money from their bank account except for $100 and store it at home.  The person then stated that they would be visiting the resident’s home on Monday to speak with them.

According to the IRS’s website, scams take many shapes and forms, such as phone calls, letters and emails. Many IRS impersonators use threats to intimidate and bully people into paying a fabricated tax bill. They may even threaten to arrest or deport their would-be victim if the victim doesn’t comply.  For a comprehensive listing of recent tax scams and consumer alerts, visit Tax Scams/Consumer Alerts.

The IRS initiates most contacts through regular mail delivered by the United States Postal Service.  However, there are special circumstances in which the IRS will call or come to a home or business, such as when a taxpayer has an overdue tax bill, to secure a delinquent tax return or a delinquent employment tax payment, or to tour a business as part of an audit or during criminal investigations.  Even then, taxpayers will generally first receive several letters (called “notices”) from the IRS in the mail.

The IRS doesn’t initiate contact with taxpayers by email, text messages or social media channels to request personal or financial information. Recognize the telltale signs of a scam. See also: How to know it’s really the IRS calling or knocking on your door.

The Dunkirk Police Department and the IRS urges the community to be on the lookout for phone scams.  The IRS recommends reporting such scams to:

  • Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration to report a phone scam. Use their “IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting” web page. You can also call 800-366-4484.
  • Report phone scams to the Federal Trade Commission. Use the “FTC Complaint Assistant” on FTC.gov. Please add “IRS Telephone Scam” in the notes.
  • Report an unsolicited email claiming to be from the IRS, or an IRS-related component like the Electronic Federal Tax Payment System, to the IRS at phishing@irs.gov.

Thanksgiving Holiday Safety Tips

The City of Dunkirk Police Department is issuing the following safety reminders to everyone during the Thanksgiving Holiday.

  1. Please plan properly for trips by checking the weather and road conditions.
  2. Allow plenty of time to reach your destination, take frequent breaks while driving. Keep your gas tank full and cell phone charged for emergencies.
  3. Be prepared to adjust driving as the road conditions change
  4. Always wear seatbelts and please make sure children are in a child safety seat. It’s a proven fact that seatbelts and child safety seats save lives.
  5. Keep an emergency pack in the vehicle including blankets, water, snacks and a flashlight.
  6. Do not drive while texting or talking on your cell phone (except in case of an emergency). This is very distracting, dangerous and it is also illegal.
  7. We wish for everyone to enjoy the holiday with family and friends but if you have celebrated too much and can’t safely operate a vehicle please don’t. Designate a safe driver ahead of time or call for a ride. Please don’t create a tragedy as your remembrance of this holiday. True friends won’t let someone they love get behind the wheel or get into a vehicle with someone if they can’t safely operate it.
  8. If you encounter reckless operators do not confront them, pull off the road and call 911 with the description and direction of travel.
  9. If you are going to be out of town for an extended period of time please take advantage of our House Watch program. Details can be found by stopping at the Police Station, calling the Police Desk at 366-2266 or by visiting the forms section on our Department website dunkirkpolice.com
  10. Please keep an eye on what is going on in your Neighborhood. If you see or hear something out of the ordinary please call the Police Desk at 366-2266 or 911 and let us send an Officer to check it out.

The Dunkirk Police Department wishes everyone a happy and safe Thanksgiving Holiday.

Missing Person

UPDATE 11-22-19 @ 6:24 PM
****MISSING PERSON LOCATED****
Anne Guziec has been located safe. The Dunkirk Police Department would like to thank the public for their assistance with information leading to her being found.

The Dunkirk Police Department is attempting to locate Anne Guziec, age 54, of Dunkirk, NY.  Approximately two days ago, Anne is believed to have been walking her dog, a brown and white English Springer Spaniel with an orange collar, in the Main St area.  Anne is a white female, about 5’2″, about 125 lbs, has hazel eyes, brown hair, and was possibly wearing white fleece hoodie, blue jeans and tan work boots.  Please contact the Dunkirk Police Department at 716-366-2266 with any information to her whereabouts.

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.

Treats:

  • 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