Afternoon News Brief

Written by on October 19, 2022

Matthew Zakrzewski

The man who set fire to the Washington Towers apartment complex back in January has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for Arson. The judge strongly advised 42-year-old Matthew Zakrzewski to use the time in prison to improve himself and go to counseling for his mental illness and substance abuse issues. The fire he set caused $10,000 in damages but could have been much worse according to the District Attorney. Zakrzewski apologized for his actions and admitted his struggle with drug and alcohol abuse. He said what he did at Washington Towers wasn’t really who he is.


Batavia Police are investigating a stabbing on Jackson Street. The incident was called in to police around 9:30 last night when first responders were called to Highland Park. The suspect is described as a black male wearing a white hooded sweatshirt. The victim was taken to the hospital for treatment. No further information is available at this time as this is an ongoing investigation. If you have information that would be helpful for police, please call 585-345-6350. The confidential tip line is 585-345-6370.



Expect traffic delays on Harvester this Friday and next Monday and Tuesday for paving. While work is being performed in this area, local traffic will be permitted to and from their residence and property but should plan accordingly for delays. Residents are asked not to park on the roadway during paving work.




South Lyon Street Bridge – file photo

Replacement of the South Lyon Street bridge won’t be as expensive as expected. That’s the word from Genesee County Highway Superintendent Tim Hens. He said the county has received federal aid funding for the construction and replacement project, as well as a state Marchiselli grant of $600,623. The bridge has been closed since August 2021 when an inspection revealed significant structural deficiencies. A new steel truss bridge will be built in its place. The new span will include two 11-foot lanes with 2-foot shoulders and a 5-foot sidewalk on the east side of the truss. South Lyon Street’s alignment will also be changed as part of the work. Photo by Doug Thompson, WBTA News.



Park Road is closed until 4:00 today

At least for today until 4, Park Rd between Richmond and Lewiston Rd will be closed for specialty pavement treatment. If you are going to Batavia Downs you’ll have to enter the parking lot from the north side near Richmond Avenue. There will be a detour posted from Lewiston around to the north side of Park for all traffic using Veterans Memorial Drive. This work is weather permitting so if it rains it will be rescheduled at least one more day.


Dr. Thomas Ramming

Dr. Thomas Ramming of International Deliverables was on hand Monday evening at the Board of Education meeting; he is a consultant who reviewed staffing at the Batavia City School District from an efficiency standpoint. He noted there appeared to be a lack of a strategic plan. One area of potential need he identified was staff assignments; for example, Dr. Ramming noted that some of the specialists, such as school psychologists, are assigned to one school, regardless of student enrollment in that school. Typically, school psychologists’ assignments are determined by population, not by school. He said this is something district administrators should look at. Similarly, the student-to-counselor ratio is “richer” than what most districts in Western New York have. While Dr. Ramming did not suggest there was an immediate need for change, he did summarize by recommending the district create a strategic plan with a five-year vision; something student-centered, with specific, measurable goals. The goals would be based on data that is available, or will become available, through information sources such as standardized testing and Regents testing.


Rasmus Dahlin

The Buffalo Sabres won their first road game of the season. JJ Peterka, Tage Thompson, Alex Tuch and Rasmus Dahlin, all scored as the Sabres beat the Edmonton Oilers 4-2 at Rogers Place last night. And with his goal in the first period, Dahlin became the second defenseman in 30 years to score a goal in each of his team’s first three games. (For trivia buffs, the other player to do that was Tampa Bay Lighting’s Victor Hedman). Buffalo goaltender Eric Comrie was able to stop 46 shots. Up next for the Sabres is another road contest against the Calgary Flames tomorrow night, with a 9:30 face-off.



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