ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Stay up to date on the latest headlines in today’s Sunrise Smart Start on Wednesday, May 4, 2022.
Across the nation and here at home, people are responding to the possibility that Roe v. Wade could be overturned.
A document leaked Monday shows the Supreme Court may be gearing up to overturn the landmark 1973 decision, which would then revert abortion rights back to individual states.
Local organizations are gearing up for this possibility. Michelle Casey, with Planned Parenthood of Western and Central New York, says she’s horrified by the Supreme Court leak with plans to overturn Roe v. Wade, saying this is an unprecedented retraction of rights.
“(It) will have untold damage to millions of American women,” Casey said.
Casey feels the ‘overturn’ has already been decided by the justices. She says they’re working on strengthening abortion rights at the state level.
“We have the protections of Roe codified into state law through the Reproductive Health Act of 2019, and were working on an equality amendment now…” she said.
Michelle Sterlace, the Executive Director of Feminists Choosing Life of New York, says they were disturbed by the leak itself.
“It degrades and undermines the institutional integrity of our government,” Sterlace said.
Sterlace says it’s suspect and unfortunate. But, if the leak is true: “We’re grateful. And we see it as a step forward toward re-humanizing humanity.”
Casey says if this goes through, expect patients from Mid-Western and Southern states to come to New York for abortion procedures.
The defense has rested in the attempted murder trial of Keith Williams, the man accused of attacking Rochester police officer Denny Wright.
Prosecutors say Keith Williams stabbed Wright in the face and lower body two and a half years ago. As a result, Wright lost his eyesight in the incident.
Williams was deemed competent to stand trial in 2020. He’s been charged with attempted aggravated murder and aggravated assault of a police officer during an October 4, 2019 incident on Peck Street.
On Tuesday, Williams testified in his own defense.
Williams said he was hearing voices in his head on the day officer Wright responded to his house. Williams said the voices in his head were telling him to get killed.
Williams added that he was previously diagnosed with bipolar disorder and doesn’t remember his encounter with officer Wright. He said he smoked marijuana earlier that day before the altercation.
Monroe County District Attorney Sandra Doorley then called a rebuttal witness; a Monroe County Jail deputy who testified that he heard Williams say he was going to pretend he was crazy and that he “stabbed a bitch ass police officer.”
The judge and Doorley told the jury “intent” is a big factor in this whole case and what matters here are the actions of Williams at the moment.
Both the prosecution and defense have rested their case and summations. Jury deliberations began around 4 pm but were dismissed at 5 pm Tuesday. Deliberations will resume Wednesday at 1:15 pm.
If convicted, Williams faces 40-years-to-life in prison.
This was not Williams’ first run-in with local law enforcement as he was in and out of courtrooms many times throughout 2019.
Officer Wright underwent surgery on the day of the attack and spent the next three weeks receiving treatment at local medical facilities.
Rochester police officials say a 28-year-old man died as a result of a motorcycle crash on the city’s west side early Tuesday morning.
Authorities say officers responded to the area of Lake Avenue and State Street around 5 a.m. for the report of a motor vehicle collision involving a motorcycle.
According to police, officers arrived on the scene and found an AMR ambulance crew performing medical care to one person.
That person, a 28-year-old man, was taken to Strong Memorial Hospital where he later died, Rochester police officials reported Tuesday afternoon.
Officials say the preliminary investigation found the motorcycle was traveling westbound when it left the roadway and struck the building located at 561 State Street.
This incident is being treated as a single-vehicle accident and not a hit and run, investigators say.
The identity of the deceased has not been released at this time.
A suspect in a 2021 stabbing was arrested Tuesday, following a police chase through downtown Rochester.
According to the Rochester Police Department, John Hudgeon III stabbed an off-duty RTS employee on MacBeth Street on October 28, 2021. The victim drove to RTS headquarters on East Main Street for help, and was hospitalized with what police called life-threatening injuries.
Hudgeon, 41, was arrested Tuesday, after a short police chase ended on the west side of the city. Police said he had an illegal handgun at the time of his arrest.
A USPS manager in Greece was charged after being accused of distributing drugs through the mail, federal prosecutors announced Tuesday.
According to a criminal complain filed in the investigation, Ralph Minni was charged with possession with intent to distribute marijuana and 500 grams of cocaine or more.
Court documents allege the U.S. Post Office manager had been shipping drugs through the mailing service, and later selling them to third-party individuals for the past four years.
Investigators quoted in the criminal complain say Minni was observed handling the operation through video cameras installed at his store location, based on Latta Road. The evidence filed in the court document also shows the man may have supplied narcotics to other USPS locations in New York.
Grace Lopez, who was employed by USPS in Henrietta, is believed to have been the closest source to Minni. The affidavit states the woman obtained around 10 pounds of marijuana through the mail everyday.
According to the affidavit, Minni would charge $1,900 for each pound of marijuana. The exchange between the suspect and buyers was recorded by an “confidential source” who would communicate with investigators and buy narcotics from the post office manager.
The criminal complain says Minni is currently in custody and awaits release pending a court appearance. The post office manager was employed by USPS in 1998.
Members of the U.S. Post Office were made aware of the investigation and say the suspect no longer has the access to use the mailing services of the company.
Consistent rain will hinder morning travel across our region Wednesday morning. Skies clear out by the afternoon, with grey clouds persisting for the rest of the day. Temperature remains in the 50s.