Sunrise Smart Start: Tuesday, November 9

Sunrise Smart Start

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Stay up to date on the latest headlines in today’s Sunrise Smart Start on Tuesday, November 9, 2021.


Former Greece Police Chief charged with DWI for crash that led to resignation

Former Greece Police Chief Drew Forsythe is facing criminal charges in connection to an October crash that led to his resignation.

Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley announced Monday that Forsythe is charged with misdemeanor driving while intoxicated and leaving the scene of a property damage accident, a traffic violation.

The police chief was placed on administrative last month after he crashed his police-issued vehicle, which then prompted an investigation by the Monroe County District Attorney’s office, and later his resignation.

Forsythe suffered a minor contusion and the vehicle was totaled. Greece Town Supervisor Bill Reilich — who won his re-election bid last week — made the announcement of Forsythe’s resignation while discussing the matter on a local radio program four days after the crash occurred.

Although the resignation was official two weeks ago, Reilich said that the district attorney’s investigation into the crash would continue, culminating in Monday’s announcement of criminal charges.

“Forsythe will be prosecuted like anybody else without special treatment,” Doorley said Monday. “The case will move forward in the court of law.”

The district attorney said she doesn’t anticipate any further criminal charges, but recommended an internal investigation be conducted into the Greece Police Department by an outside expert. Doorley said retired Rochester Police Deputy Chief of Operations Joe Morabito will oversee the internal Greece police investigation.

Additionally, the district attorney said the Town of Greece should consider purchasing police worn body camera for all of its officers.


‘He was absolutely wonderful’: Fatal construction accident in Chili shakes community

A heartbreaking loss of life in the Rochester community. Police say 56-year-old Robert Fallone Jr. was killed in a construction accident Sunday morning. 

News 8 set out on Monday to learn more about his life, and his impact in the community.

Neighbors, who declined to go on camera, told News 8’s Eriketa Cost he was very involved in the community. He loved to build houses, was a dentist, a business owner and friend.

“Painful, painful,” said Bernie Iacovangelo describing the moment he heard the news. Iacovangelo, a Monroe County GOP chairman and member of the building community says he knew Fallone his whole life.

“You know I used to tell my kids, the problem with an accident, it takes a second to change everyone’s lives you can’t undo it,” he said.

Police say Fallone, and another man of a private contractor were working on a piece of property at Bellaqua Estates Drive in Chili. They say the two were digging a 15 foot trench, to access an underground sewer — when it caved in on Fallone, taking his life.


Rochester man indicted for murder in death of girlfriend’s son

A Rochester man who police say killed his girlfriend’s son before leading officers on a chase and shootout in the city last month was indicted by a Monroe County Grand Jury Monday.

According to officials from the Monroe County District Attorney’s office, 36-year-old Nicholas DeLeon is now facing charges of:

  • Second degree murder
  • Three counts of second degree criminal possession of a weapon
  • Two counts of attempted aggravated murder of a police officer

According to prosecutors, police were investigating after a fatal shooting on Lamont Place on October 20 which claimed the life of 19-year-old Christian Santiago.

Police say as they were investigating, they attempted to stop a vehicle that sped away. They say during that chase, Deleon, the front-seat passenger, leaned out the window and fired at handgun at officers at least twice.

Officials say the officer in the front passenger seat of the patrol car fired at least one round in return. They say DeLeon then threw the handgun from the suspect vehicle.

DeLeon and the driver were ultimately arrested after the vehicle was stopped on Avenue D. No one was injured in the shootout, authorities said.

According to police, DeLeon was the boyfriend of Santiago’s mother.

The driver of the suspect vehicle in the shootout, who was a relative of DeLeon, was not charged.


Police searching for Rochester woman missing since August

Rochester police officials are asking the public for help as they attempt to locate a missing woman who has not been seen by her family since August.

Authorities say Dominique Balkum is described as 34 years old, 5 feet tall, and 100 pounds. Police say she goes by Nique-Nique.

Authorities say she suffers from mental health issues and her family hasn’t seen her since August of this year.

Anyone with information about her whereabouts is asked to call 911.


Rochester Correctional Facility set to close in 2022

Rochester Correctional Facility is one of six New York correctional facilities scheduled to close on March 10, 2022.

According to state officials, Rochester Correctional Facility is a minimum security work release institution, has a current staff of 26, with 46 incarcerated individuals and a capacity of 70.

According to NYSCOPBA, the union that represents prison workers, the six facilities set to close are Moriah Shock, Ogednsburg, Downstate, Southport, Rochester, and Willard Correctional.

The union says the closure is due to a measure in the New York State budget “to close state prisons as the incarcerated population continues to decline and as a fiscally prudent and safe way to save taxpayer dollars.”

Southport and the five other facilities set to close were chosen “based on a variety of factors, including physical infrastructure, program offerings, facility security level, specialized medical and mental health services, proximity of other facilities in the area to minimize the impact to staff, potential re-use options and areas of the state where prior closures have occurred in order to minimize the impact to communities. Consideration of the impact of the recently enacted HALT and Less Is More legislation was also weighed.”

As of November 8, 2021, the total incarcerated population in New York state correctional facilities is 31,469. According to NYSCOPBA, this represents both a total reduction in excess of 12,700 individuals since January 1, 2020, and the lowest total incarcerated population in New York State prisons since 1984.

New York leads the nation with the lowest imprisonment rate of any large state.

According to the DOCCS website, Rochester Correctional Facility is a minimum security level facility for males that offers programs and services, including but not limited to:

  • Alcohol and Substance Abuse Treatment Programs
  • Anger Management Programs
  • Educational/Vocational Programs
  • Family Development Programs
  • Guidance and Counseling Services
  • Library and Law Library Services 
  • Recreational Programs
  • Religious Services
  • Sex Offender Treatment Programs
  • Temporary Release Programs
  • Trauma Programs
  • Transitional Services Programs
  • Veterans Services
  • Volunteer Services and Programs

1,016 new COVID-19 cases in Monroe County in 3 days, 16 new deaths, 5.9% positivity rate

Officials from the Monroe County Department of Public Health reported 255 new COVID-19 cases Monday, and 16 new deaths.

County officials report COVID-19 deaths weekly on Mondays. To date, 1,455 Monroe County residents have died from COVID-19.

County officials say 412 new cases were discovered Saturday, and 349 new cases were discovered Sunday.

The county is now averaging 311 new cases per day over the past week. Monroe County now has a seven-day rolling average positivity rate of 5.9%.

According to the New York State Department of Health, 243 people in the Finger Lakes region were hospitalized with the virus Friday, including 67 in an ICU.

As of the Monroe County COVID-19 dashboard’s last local vaccination update October 25, 450,233 county residents are fully vaccinated and 497, 869 have received at least one dose of the vaccine — 77.4% of the county population.


FDA reports 100+ drug shortages nationwide

Recent supply chain disruptions are impacting everything from clothes to food, and even trips to the pharmacy. Popular drugs like Adderall, oxycodone, and insulin are running low nationwide.

In Tennessee, Steve Beasley said he’s having trouble finding iron dextran for his iron infusions. “I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place right now – none of the pharmacies around here can get it where they can compound it in-house.”

The FDA currently lists 112 drug shortages on its website. The reasons for the backlogs all vary.


Weather forecast: Clouds and warmth today ahead of rain overnight

Clouds will trickle back in Tuesday ahead of our first system, a weak one that likely doesn’t have enough kick for rain until Tuesday night. The lack of sunshine will knock highs down Tuesday. We’re thinking middle and upper 50s should do it.

A period of showers works into WNY Tuesday night, tapering off for most of you by the time you wake up Wednesday morning. Both Wednesday and Thursday look dry and mild as we wait on system #2 late Thursday into Friday.

This system will have more bite. Breezy conditions get going ahead of the cold front Thursday with widespread, soaking rain likely into Friday. As this front clears, progressively colder air will filter back into the region for the weekend.

This will set the stage for scattered rain and snow showers both Saturday and Sunday with temperatures that fail to get out of the 40s both days. At this early juncture, it appears unlikely any of that snow will amount to anything in terms of accumulation, but time will shed some light on this topic later this week.

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