ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Stay up to date on the latest headlines in today’s Sunrise Smart Start on Wednesday, August 17, 2022.


Gunfire hits occupied Rochester home on Ernestine St.

 An occupied home on Ernestine Street was struck by gunfire late just after midnight Wednesday in Rochester.

Authorities say officers were led in the area of Ernestine Street around 12:20 a.m. for the report of a house hit by gunfire. Upon arrival, officers located evidence of gunfire in the immediate location.

Investigators on scene combed through the area and found bullet strikes to a residence. Inside were four occupants, including two children under the age of eight. None of them were injured.

According to police, there are no suspects in custody at this time. Anyone with further info is encouraged to call 911. This is an ongoing investigation.

New marijuana processing facility may bring 100-plus jobs to Rochester region

As farmers grow legal cannabis, the product will then be taken to licensed processors, where products like gummies and edibles will be made. On Monday, the Cannabis Control Board approved the first 15 legal marijuana processors in New York, NOWAVE on Buell Road being one of them, with a new facility currently under construction on Trade Court.

Ken Gregory is the Vice President of Operations with NOWAVE. He says they soon will be working with licensed cannabis growers across the state to bring their crop here. “So at this point, they have to partner with a processor to be able to extract and make edibles, or tinctures, or cartridges for the rec marijuana program,” he said.

That’s in a nutshell what Gregory and his gang will make. What will be produced — and at a handful of other legal plants across the state — will be tested through and through. 

“So the intention is to understand what you’re putting in, whether it is exact potency content, or if there are pesticides or chemical contaminants,” Gregory said.

Because the stuff off the street or from unlicenced places — you just don’t know what’s in it. “You’re going to have a much better experience with a product if you know the lab-tested results,” Gregory said.

And with a core group of about 30 employees, this company has the potential to add about 100 more jobs to the local economy. “It just all depends on how fast the dispensaries grow,” says Brian Lane, the compliance officer at NOWAVE.

He says the marijuana industry will bring in billions for New York. “The anticipated revenue of this state is about $9 billion dollars at its peak,” Lane said.

The building at 300 Trade Court is the new intended home for NOWAVE — that move will come hopefully next month. “Once they approve everything, we’ll move all our operations into this building,” Lane said.

Provided all goes well, the company plans to host a grand opening in October.

Greece schools, town at odds over resource officer costs

In a meeting Tuesday night, the Greece Board of Education addressed a standoff between the town and the school district over putting Greece police officers in schools.

With just a few weeks to go before school starts, there’s a disagreement over how much the district should pay for school resource officers when in school. The district saying it will pay $240,000 while the town says it wants $350,000.

School Board President Sean McCabe said Tuesday that they have to work something out soon.

“Our parents are super supportive of the Greece Police in our schools,” McCabe said. “I mean, especially after the tragedies that have occurred across the country, Uvalde for one. They like having armed police officers in the schools.”

The town responded with a statement saying the price tag is fair, and the town even absorbs some of the cost.

It’s unclear when this might get worked out.

House of Mercy stabbing suspect indicted on murder, other charges

The suspect in the House of Mercy stabbing that left one dead and one seriously injured has been indicted on murder charges, officials announced Tuesday.

Nathaniel Jeanpierre III, 40, is accused of attacking and killing Michael Nairy, 68, with a large sheath-type knife at the shelter the evening of Aug. 7. Jeanpierre is also accused of seriously injuring another man in his 20s. Both attacks were unprovoked, according to investigators.

An indictment furthers the legal process by formally giving the defendant notice that it is believed they committed a crime.

On Aug. 9, prior to the indictment, Jeanpierre pleaded not guilty to the charges. Following the incident, state regulators traveled to the House of Mercy to meet with executives and improve safety at the building.

Jeanpierre was indicted on one count of murder in the second degree, attempted murder in the second degree, and one count of assault in the first degree.

Rochester Fire Department captain linked to racist party allegations retires

Rochester Fire Department Captain Jeff Krywy, who was accused of bringing an on-duty firefighter to a racist mock Juneteenth party, decided to retire Monday, after being told he must leave the RFD.

Krywy was accused of forcing three subordinates, including 14-year veteran Jerrod Jones, to attend a private Juneteenth spoof party while on the clock on July 7. Jones said the party had large Juneteenth celebration flags propped up on the lawn, along with buckets of fried chicken.

At one point Jones says he saw Krywy receive a party favor bag that contained a bottle of cognac and a Juneteenth commemorative cup.

Jones announced last week he would sue the City of Rochester and the RFD, claiming they mishandled his complaint following the party. He said he alerted RFD leadership the next day but was still placed with Krywy for his next shift.

Rochester Mayor Malik Evans released a statement Monday regarding the RFD’s internal investigation into the incident. According to the mayor, the investigation determined Krywy would be required to leave the service.

Evans said Krywy chose to retire “before termination proceedings begin.”

“The underlying issues that bring us to today were not created in the last eight months,” Evans said. “I thank Fire Chief Felipe Hernandez for his continued commitment to addressing the structural biases and cultural challenges within the RFD. We will share regular updates on our work to tackle these longstanding issues in the weeks to come.”

Speaking to reporters Thursday, Jones said he believed he saw a senior member of the Rochester Police Department at the party. The RPD responded, saying an internal investigation was already in progress. “If any members are found to have been involved in these vile allegations,” an RPD statement said, “appropriate disciplinary measures will be taken.”

The firefighters union released a statement Thursday, saying, “Our union has zero tolerance for racist attitudes and behaviors, either on or off our jobs. We will await the findings and details of a full investigation of this matter, before making further comments or taking responsive actions.”

The union has yet to comment on the results of the investigation.

The allegations have also led to consequences for local dentist Dr. Nicholas Nicosia and his wife, Mary Nicosia, who were accused of hosting the racist event at their home. Dr. Nicosia was asked to step down from the Highland Hospital Board of Directors, and the Rochester Americans hockey team ended their relationship with him as the team dentist. Mary Nicosia was suspended from the board of The Landmark Society of Western New York.

Friday, Nicholas Nicosia sent this statement to News 8:

“My wife Mary and I were surprised and disappointed about the allegations that have been made against us, and by the responses being posted on social media. We strongly disagree with how we are being characterized and are hopeful that the community will hold its judgment while we seek to clear our names. Highland Hospital has asked me to step down from its Board of Directors, and I have agreed to do so, so that I can focus my efforts on restoring our reputations.”

Weather forecast: Feast or famine, storms on the move

Rochester is on for another day of storms Wednesday as radar starts to come alive into the afternoon. The overall evolution will feature a similar flavor to Tuesday with scattered coverage but locally heavy and strong storms where they do fire.