Northern New York Newspapers
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Sun., Oct. 4
Serving the communities of Massena and Potsdam, New York
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Massena judge shuts down one man crime spree


MASSENA - A Massena man charged with several counts of petit larceny over the past several months was jailed following an appearance in Massena Village Court.

Village police had charged Joseph A. Rousaw, 38, of Massenawith three counts of petit larceny and second-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle following a traffic stop in late March. The stop was made following an investigation into three gas drive-offs over a two-week period. He allegedly stole $92 worth of gasoline from Mountain Mart, $50.08 from Stewart’s and $10 from Stewart’s.

He was charged with petit larceny on June 30 when he walked out of the Price Chopper without paying for $191 worth of groceries in his cart, including beer, Twisted Teas and beer.

The previous day he had been charged with criminal possession of a hypodermic needle when they found a needle in his pant’s pocket during another petit larceny investigation.

“If these allegations are true,” Massena Village Justice Eric J. Gustafson said, “it appears Mr. Rousaw is on the process of creating a one-man crime spree in the village.”

He set bail at $1,000 and sent Rousaw to the St. Lawrence County Correctional Facility.

In other recent court action before Judge Gustafson:

■ Jacob J. Mitchell, 19, of 41 Belmont St., Massena, was placed under a one-year conditional discharge and ordered to perform 20 hours of community service for a disorderly conduct conviction. He was also ordered to pay a $125 surcharge.

He was charged with punching Ryan Kirkey during an altercation in the Massena Central High School parking lot on Nov. 9.

■ James H. Root Jr., 34, of 419 South Main St., Apt. 2, Massena, was fined $100 and a $125 surcharge for disorderly conduct and an additional $100 fine for trespassing.

The trespassing charge alleged he had walked into his neighbor’s apartment, Erin Abelard and Dahtez Jones, and then into their bedroom in the early morning hours of Feb. 18 to ask them to take him to the store to get more beer.

The disorderly conduct charge alleged Root became enraged a short time later when Abelard went next door and asked him to turn the music down so she and her children could sleep. He reportedly yelled loudly, refused to quiet down and had to be separated from Abelard by his girlfriend.

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