GHENT—A plane that landed without its landing gear engaged was the subject of an investigation by the Sheriff’s Office, Saturday, March 20 at about 6:13 p.m.
Deputy Zachary Torchia responded to a call about a fuel spill at the Columbia County Airport on Route 9H, where he found that the spill resulted when a plane landed without its landing gear deployed, according to a press release from Sheriff David P. Bartlett.
The plane was a 1963 Piper Comanche PA24-250 operated by Larrie Sutliff of Briarcliff Manor, a village in Westchester County.
The pilot, who was not injured in the landing, had been practicing landings and did not realize his landing gear was not down. The plane landed on its fuselage and slid on the runway, where it came to rest. The pilot did not appear to be under the influence of any intoxicants, the release said.
The Sheriff’s Office is working with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in regards to this investigation. Deputy Torchia was assisted at the airport by Sergeant Heath Benansky.
Members of the Columbia County Sheriff’s Office Drug Enforcement and Education Unit conducted an investigation into suspicious activity on Main Street in the Village, March 16 at 6:59 p.m. During the course of the investigation Sheriff’s patrols made contact with Duane McEwan, 40, of Halfmoon in Saratoga County.
Patrols were aware of an active arrest warrant for Mr. McEwan in connection with an unrelated incident, so he was placed into custody on Main Street, according to a press release from Sheriff Bartlett.
During his arrest, Mr. McEwan allegedly possessed a quantity of marijuana and about $5,800 in cash.
Further investigation and a search of the vehicle in which Mr. McEwan was a passenger led to the discovery of about 60 grams of fentanyl. Also found was about 40 grams of crack
and powder cocaine as well as concentrated cannabis and another larger quantity of marijuana.
As a result of the investigation, Mr. McEwan was charged with two counts of third degree criminal possession of a controlled substance—intent to sell, a class B felony, and two counts
of criminal possession of a controlled substance—more than a half ounce, a class B felony.
The street value of the fentanyl is about $6,000 and the street value of the crack and cocaine is about $4,000, the release said.
Mr. McEwan was arraigned in Claverack Court before Justice Michael Brandon and released on his own recognizance. He was ordered to appear in Philmont Village Court March 25.
Members of the Sheriff’s Office Drug Enforcement and Education Unit were assisted by resident Deputy Peter Merante and patrol Deputy Matthew Leonard.
“This was a great pick up by the drug unit and patrol deputies in the area. To look beyond the suspicious activity to recognize what was really going on is a credit to their training and knowledge. I am happy they got this poison off of the street. With the recent up-tick in overdoses over the past two weeks, the job of the drug enforcement and education unit is of the utmost importance,” the sheriff said. Anyone with information regarding drugs being sold or provided by Mr. McEwan or any other drug activity is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office Tips line at 518-822-8477 (TIPS).
State Police from the New Lebanon barracks arrested Brenda L. McCartney, 39, of Pittsfield, MA, for two counts of third degree criminal possession of a controlled substance including one count with intent to sell, a class B felony; three counts of seventh degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, and second degree criminal use of drug paraphernalia, both class A misdemeanors, March 13.
At 1:20 p.m., New Lebanon troopers conducted a traffic stop on a 2014 Chrysler 200 for a violation of vehicle and traffic law on State Route 20. An investigation discovered Ms. McCartney allegedly possessed about 49 grams of fentanyl, small amounts of crack-cocaine, opiates and naloxone, as well as equipment used to measure illicit drugs for sale.
She was arraigned in New Lebanon Court and released on her own recognizance. She is scheduled to next appear in court April 15.
The following face drug- and/or alcohol-related charges:
*Michael Hurst, 35, of Stottville was charged with seventh degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, a class A misdemeanor and second degree unlawful possession of marijuana, a violation, by Deputy Matthew Leonard, February 7 at 9:15 p.m. Mr. Hurst was stopped at a sobriety check point on State Route 23 near the Rip Van Winkle Bridge. He was found to allegedly possess a quantity of cocaine and marijuana. He was issued appearance tickets and released to return to Greenport Court at a later date.
*Ram Kapica, 26, of the Bronx was charged with fourth degree criminal possession of marijuana, a class A misdemeanor, and traffic infractions by Deputies Timothy Gladwin and John Sullivan, February 9 at 1:19 a.m.
Mr. Kapica allegedly possessed marijuana during a traffic stop on the Taconic State Parkway in Taghkanic. He was issued appearance tickets and released to return to Taghkanic Court at a later date.
*Cary D. Jones, 28, of Hillsdale was charged with third degree criminal possession of marijuana, a class E felony and seventh degree criminal possession of a controlled substance, a class A misdemeanor, during a traffic stop on State Route 23 in Claverack, February 26 at 8:37 a.m. Mr. Jones was a passenger in a car that was stopped for vehicle and traffic violations. He was found to allegedly possess marijuana. He was issued tickets to appear in Claverack Court March 23. He was arrested by Sergeant Heath Benansky and Deputy Phillipp Gomm with assistance offered by canine Apollo at the scene.
To contact Diane Valden email .
SPs host child passenger safety event
LIVINGSTON—State Police will host a child passenger safety seat event by appointment only at 3353 State Route 9, Saturday, April 3 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Child safety seat technicians will be on hand to assist with the installation of your child’s safety seat, and answer any questions. An appointment is necessary for this event, contact Sergeant Amy Anderson at 845-677-7331 or via email at