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Serving the communities of Massena and Potsdam, New York
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Former Massena man fined for scuffle with brother

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MASSENA - A Syracuse man was fined after he admitted he had punched his brother in the face during a family dispute in November.

Village police had charged Charles F. Dennis Jr., 36, of 2504 Brewerton Road, Syracuse, with third-degree assault following a Columbus Day skirmish with his brother.

Dennis allegedly punched his brother, Robert Dennis, in the eye during an altercation at 4:15 p.m. Oct. 10 at Robert’s residence, 10 Perkins Road.

Massena Village Justice Eric J. Gustafson fined Dennis $50 and a $125 surcharge after he pleaded guilty to a reduced count of second-degree harassment. The court also signed a stay away order of protection.

Dennis indicated he had no desire to have contact with his brother and told the court there are still long-standing family tension issues.

Charles told police he had met Robert and a few other people the previous day at the Rod & Gun Club, and he had put a scope mount and scope rings on his brother’s muzzleloader.

He said his brother had called him the next day and started complaining about the way he had placed the scope rings on the muzzleloader. He said he also wasn’t pleased with the response he received when he asked Robert how much he had paid for his gun.

The situation reportedly deteriorated during the day as the brothers exchanged a series of text messages.

Charles told police he then went to his brother’s home late that afternoon to confront him. He said he punched Robert when he opened the door and he started raising his hands toward Charles’ face. He noted he then pushed Robert into a closet door to stop him from swinging back at him.

In other recent court action before Judge Gustafson:

■ Crystal M. Fields, 31, of 51 Sycamore St., Massena, was fined $75 and a $125 surcharge for a disorderly conduct conviction.

She had been charged with yelling and screaming back and forth with Sandra Moerlins as they threatened to beat each other up during an argument in the presence of a police officer at 8:55 p.m. April 30. Moerlins was also charged with disorderly conduct in connection with that incident. Her case is still pending in village court.

■ John S. Snow, 28, of 57 Conner Road, Hogansburg, was ordered to serve a 15-day intermittent jail sentence - weekends from 5 p.m. Friday to 5 p.m. Sunday on May 25-27 and June 1-3 for a driving while ability impaired conviction. He was also fined $300 and a $260 surcharge, had his operating privileges suspended for 90 days and was placed under a one-year conditional discharge with a stipulation that he must be clean and sober when he arrives at the jail both weekends.

Snow was fined an additional $100 and a $5 surcharge for leaving the scene of a property damage accident, $25 and a $5 surcharge for failure to use designated lane and $100 and a $5 surcharge for speed not reasonable and prudent.

Prosecutors offered Snow the plea bargain to a reduced count after he completed a treatment program.

He had been charged with aggravated DWI and several vehicle and traffic law violations following a property damage accident at 3:10 a.m. Dec. 23 on South Main Street. He reportedly had a blood alcohol content of 0.19 percent.

■ Robert F. Lytle, 38, of 18 Pine St., Massena, was granted an adjournment in contemplation of dismissal. He had been charged with fourth-degree criminal mischief and second-degree criminal trespass following an incident at 3:45 a.m. May 21.

Police said Lytle allegedly kicked and punched a door and damaged a window when he was trying to enter his ex-girlfriend’s residence at 258 Center St. Police reports indicated Lytle was seeking to gain entrance to Crystal Durocher’s residence to get in a fight with her new boyfriend, Tyler Paige, and also tried to climb through the window.

Robert and Audrey Rushlow later provided prosecutors and the court with a statement saying the incident had taken place at their apartment, that Lytle had their permission to be at the apartment and that the window had been broken prior to the incident.

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