ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Stay up to date on the latest headlines in today’s Sunrise Smart Start on Thursday, August 4, 2022.


Waterfront project in Henrietta aims to transform recreation by the Erie Canal

A proposed project to celebrate the Erie Canal with a community gathering space, a boat launch, and a recreational node with shops could be underway in Henrietta soon.

It’s not just in Henrietta, either. There are other projects being planned in Brighton and other townships, and it’s all part of the Local Waterfront Revitalization Program.

The project in Henrietta is just one of many other plans, including a river walk trail, a path on East River Road, and improvements to existing parks. The specific waterfront project in Henrieta will cover parts of the Genesee River and a section of the Erie Canal.

Town Supervisor Steve Schultz said the project has many residents excited. 

“There’s a dock along the edge of the canal so boaters can pull up, there are benches the people can sit and watch the boats go by, and then behind that there are shops,” said Schultz.

There’s also the possibility of a swimming pool, however, “swimming pools are very expensive operationally,” said Schultz, adding costs might need to be shared.

For the entire canal, towpath, and boat launch project, as it stands now, there is no cost to Henrietta residents. Schultz is applying via the Local Waterfront Revitalization Program. 

“We successfully obtained a grant and most of our contributions are in kind,” said Schultz.

So much of this, according to Schultz, relies on working with other municipalities and organizations in and around the town. “Like I said, obviously, with this particular project, the JCC has been a great partner.”

Josh Weinstein with the Louis Wolk Jewish Community Center in Brighton just announced they are creating a community campus on the canal on their property.

He said Schultz reached out regarding a revitalization project. 

“And so we’ve really come up with something that’s transformational. That would be a boat house village and a boat launch right here,” said Weinstein. “We’re fortunate that New York State has this waterfront revitalization program.”

Schultz said for this, they needed the JCC “because the JCC property on Brighton-Henrietta Town Line goes right through the middle of the property.”

In Henrietta, creating a canal path and towpath village will be a long-term project to complete, about 5-plus years. Constructing a boat launch along the Erie Canal boat launch will be a short-term project, about 1-2 years to finish.

Teen bicyclist killed in hit-and-run on Lake Ave. in Rochester

A 19-year-old bicyclist died Wednesday after a hit-and-run on Lake Avenue overnight.

According to police, officers were led to the area of Lake Avenue and Burley Road just after midnight for the report of a bicyclist struck by a motor vehicle. Once at the scene, they located a 19-year-old from Rochester and quickly transported him to a nearby hospital with critical injuries.

Investigators say the victim was traveling southbound on Lake Avenue when he was struck by a vehicle. The driver of the car fled the scene.

This hit-and-run investigation is currently ongoing. Anyone with more info is asked to dial 911.

Rochester man stabbed several times during robbery on Otis St.

A 27-year-old city resident was hospitalized after being stabbed several times during a robbery on Otis Street late Wednesday night.

According to police, officers arrived at the Burger King on Lyell Avenue around 10 p.m. for the report of a stabbing. They located a man who sustained lacerations in his upper and lower body.

Investigators say the victim was approached by several suspects who demanded property from him on Otis Street. When he refused, a physical altercation ensued between the suspects and the victim. Authorities say the man was stabbed during the incident and managed to flee from the suspects.

He was eventually transported to a nearby hospital after being found at the Burger King location and is now being treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

An investigation is currently underway. Anyone with further information is asked to dial 911.

Man accused of killing Rochester police officer indicted on aggravated murder

The Massachusetts man accused of killing Rochester Police Officer Anthony Mazurkiewicz has been indicted on aggravated murder among other charges.

Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley presented the indictment Wednesday.

Kelvin Vickers, 21, potentially faces eight separate charges including aggravated murder, murder in the second degree, attempted aggravated murder, attempted murder in the second degree and two counts of criminal possession of a weapon.

According to prosecutors, aggravated murder carries a sentence of life without parole if convicted.

Vickers is accused of approaching the patrol vehicle of Officer Mazurkiewicz and Officer Sino Seng alongside Bauman Street and firing 17 rounds at the officers. Additionally, a 15-year-old girl, Tamaia Walker, was shot in the arm by a stray bullet while in her home.

Officer Seng, who exited his vehicle and returned fire at the suspect, was struck in the lower body and is in the process of recovering. Walker is also recovering at this time, authorities say.

“With aggravated murder, the court has no other option but life without the possibility of parole,” Doorley said. “He also attempted to cause the death and injury to Officer Seng — that could be consecutive time and more time.”

Doorley was joined by several other officials and community leaders including Monroe County Executive Adam Bello, Rochester Mayor Malik Evans, Rochester Police Chief David Smith, President of the Locust Club Mike Mazzeo, and MCSO Sheriff Todd Baxter.

The mayor stepped on the podium first and touched on the prolonging effect of Vicker’s actions.

“I want to commend the man and woman of the Rochester Police Department who have continued to do their job, even in the midst of their grief,” Evans said. “This is not only a nightmare for them — the Mazurkiewicz family — but it’s a nightmare for our city. But the way we drive out darkness is to bring in more light, and the way to bring light is by making sure we have justice. And I am convinced justice will be done in this case.”

The indictment had been formally filed fifteen minutes prior to the start of the conference. In his remarks, Bello, too, highlighted that the day is about justice for the victims of the “wave of violence.”

“Public safety is fundamental to the future of our city, and public safety is being challenged right now,” Bello said. “We must answer that challenge with questions. Like the mayor and district attorney, I am sickened with the amount of violence in our city… My commitment to you is to provide as many resources to our residents and keep our protectors safe.”

When asked to speak on behalf of the Rochester police union, Mazzeo said the following:

“I’ll only say this out of respect for the system to go forward in the way it should go forward: We’re going to reserve our comments. But believe me, I’d like to say some comments.”

Doorley said that Vickers has a criminal record stretching back to the age of 12-years-old, when he assaulted a police officer. Additionally, he has numerous charges of possessing a weapon.

Most recently, Vickers was released from the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Massachusetts at the end of May, after being charged and sentenced for carrying a firearm and ammunition without a license.

Vickers is currently being held in Monroe County Jail with no option of bail. According to officials with the DA’s office, he will be arraigned on these charges on a “future date in a superior court in Monroe County.”

The DA’s office said they hope to have arraignment details finalized by the end of the day today.

When asked if Vickers made a statement in his preliminary hearing, Doorley says he would only give his name and date of birth, and told the court “he doesn’t live anywhere.”

Mazurkiewicz was laid to rest Monday. A funeral was held at Blue Cross Arena in his honor, where thousands paid tribute to his life.

4-year-old safe after kidnapping attempt in Rochester

Rochester police said a 4-year-old was safely recovered Wednesday after a kidnapping on Norton Street.

According to investigators, the child was in a car near the Norton and North Goodman Street intersection when the vehicle was stolen.

Police said the car was found a few streets away, with the child still inside.

Police are investigating the incident as a kidnapping, and reminding the public not to leave cars running unattended. Anyone with information is asked to call 911.

Weather forecast: Hot and humid plus a few afternoon storms

A warm front is currently pushing through WNY, marking a transition from drier to more humid air. Dew points will be climbing quickly, destined for the lower 70s.