Wednesday, April 20, 2022

Bank, Stores and Gas Stations; Shots Fired During Chase:

Albion man admits to 5 robberies in 4 day spree in Orleans, Monroe counties

An Albion man who embarked on a wild two-week crime spree in two counties, including leading police on a high-speed chase that included police firing shots at his car, has pleaded guilty to federal robbery charges.

John S. Cecchini, 28, appeared in U.S. District Court Tuesday, where he pleaded guilty to bank robbery and four counts of Hobbs Act robbery, charges that each carry a maximum term of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.

Cecchini, who also is under indictment in Orleans County for nine burglaries, admitted committing five robberies between April 2 and April 5, 2021:

■ On April 2, Cecchini robbed the Five Star Bank branch at 2 West Ave. in Clarkson, Monroe County. He handed a bank employee a note which read, “Please do not make me hurt you. I need all of your money in your drawer and hurry up. You delay, I’ll start shooting.” Before the teller could read the note, Cecchini said, “give me all of the money in the drawer before I start shooting.” The teller complied and gave him cash, and Cecchini fled the area.

■ On April 3, Cecchini robbed the Discount Groceries and More at 11 South Main Street, Lyndonville, He entered the store and handed a store employee a note that read “I don’t want anyone to get hurt” and verbally demanded all of the money in the cash drawer. The employee complied with Cecchini’s demands and handed him cash, and Cecchini left the store and fled the area.

■ On April 4, 2021, Cecchini robbed the Alexander’s Mobil Gas Station at 4118 Lake Road, Clarkson. He told an employee that he had a taser and said “This is a stick up. Keep your hands on the counter, act normal.” The employee handed Cecchini cash from the cash register while Cecchini placed his hand in his sweatshirt pocket as if he had a gun. Cecchini took the cash, exited the store, and fled the area.

On April 5, Cecchini robbed Crosby’s Gas Station at 202 North Main St., Albion. He showed an employee a taser gun and demanded money, saying that the taser had probes in it and he wasn’t afraid to use it if the employee didn’t hurry up. The employee handed Cecchini cash, and Cecchini fled the area.

Later in the day Cecchini robbed the Family Dollar at 11322 Maple Ridge Rd, Medina. Cecchini asked a store employee, “Have you ever been robbed before?” while holding an object in his hand as if it were a weapon. The employee handed Cecchini cash, and he fled the area in a car.

Police saw his car on Route 104 in Ridgeway and gave chase. Cecchini led police through Ridgeway, Gaines and Carlton at high speeds, traveling through lawns and ditches to avoid roadblocks.

He also gunned his car at a deputy, who jumped out of the way, prompting other officers to open fire on Cecchini’s car.

He was arrested after the tires broke off his car on Stillwater Road in Carlton.

Cecchini two weeks earlier was the subject of a search after he crashed a pickup truck into a tree off Route 104 in Murray and fled the scene. The truck was nearly split in half and was left mangled but Cecchini somehow managed to escape injury and climb from the wreckage.

Cecchini, who remains jailed, is to be sentenced federally on June 16.

After his arrest, he was indicted in June in Orleans County Court and charged with second-degree burglary; eight counts of third-degree burglary; two counts of third-degree grand larceny; six counts of fourth-degree grand larceny; three counts of criminal mischief; and five counts of petit larceny.

The indictment accuses Cecchini with burglarizing seven outbuildings and one house in Ridgeway, Shelby and Albion between Dec. 22, 2020 and Jan. 5, 2021. Numerous items, including weapons, were stolen during the crime spree.

Investigators said Cecchini had at least three co-conspirators in some of the burglaries, some who already have been convicted and sentenced.

Cecchini has an extensive criminal history and was on parole at the time of his arrest for the robberies

Cecchini was just 17 when he was sentenced to two to six years in state prison for burglary convictions. He was released after serving just seven months.

Four months later, he was among five people arrested for a series of burglaries in Albion, Medina and Ridgeway. Cecchini was convicted a year later and was sentenced to seven years in prison.

He was released in 2019 but quickly violated parole, with two arrests. He was returned to prison and released again on Oct. 15. He is on parole until Jan. 14, 2025.

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Walter D. “Pete” Mairs, 81, died peacefully on July 23, 2021. Born in Avon, N.Y., on Sept. 3, 1939, Pete was a longtime resident of Geneva, N.Y., and these past many years in Buffalo, N.Y., as well as his beloved Silver Lake. Pete is survived by his wife, Linda Bergstrom Mairs, a loving and true companion; children, Mimi C. Mairs, Jonathan B. Mairs; sisters, June Huff, Helen Dole; brother, Thomas Mairs; stepchildren, Daniel Brinkworth, Jennie Ramsey; sister-in-law, Anne Bergstrom, eight beautiful grandchildren, and nieces and nephews. A service and celebration of life is planned for the fall when all can share the joy of Pete’s life together. Arrangements by Stephenson – Dougherty Funeral Home, Avon, N.Y.

Editor's Note: It was a privilege knowing and working with Pete Mairs during his presidency of the Silver Lake Institute. He was a kind and gentle man, but also firm in his leadership. I served as Treasurer and Chaplain of SLI during those years and I could always depend on Pete's presence in the worship service. He was a man of faith and a gem of a human being. May he rest in God's care.


Gerald C. Sahrle, 80, of Perry, passed away on Sunday, Oct. 24, 2021, at Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester. He was born on Oct. 10, 1941, in Wayland, N.Y., to the late Charles A. and Helen I. (Blowers) Sahrle. Gerry was a line foreman for 32 1/2 years for NYSE&G, working out of the Perry and Hamburg locations, and was a Town of Perry Councilman. He was a member of the Free and Accepted Masons of the Constellation Lodge -404 in Perry. He was an avid fisherman, hunter and woodworker. He is survived by his wife, Valary A. (Conley) Sahrle; 1 son, Gerald (Pamela) Sahrle II of Silver Springs; 2 sisters, Millie Edmond of Greece, Bonnie Fink of Winston-Salem, N.C., 3 brothers, Ronald (Linda) Sahrle of Dansville, Robert (Susan) Sahrle of Springwater, Kenneth Sahrle of Dansville; 5 grandchildren, Bradley Musscarella, Stone and Winston Sahrle, Conley and Cooper Gayton; along with many nieces, nephews and friends. Along with his parents, he is preceded in death by a brother, Thomas Sahrle, who passed away in 2012. Services will be held at the convenience of the family. Gerry will be laid to rest in West Perry Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the Perry Center Fire Department, P.O. Box 204, Perry, NY 14530. For more information, please call (585) 237-2626 or to leave a message of condolence, visit Arrangements completed by Eaton-Watson Funeral Home, LLC. 98 North Main Street, Perry, NY 14530.

Editor's Note: Gerald and Valarie could always be seen in the family pew with Pamela, Stone and Winston at Perry First United Methodist Church and continue to be loved. Gerry will be sorely missed. Both were supporters of the Arts at the Silver Lake Institute and Valarie was active in painting and participating in the Annual Show in August. Valarie's presence was always valued and appreciated.


"Kathy P." passed November 8, 2021, of Hamburg and Boston, NY. Beloved daughter of Joseph and Barbara Michalak; loving sister of Daniel Michalak; devoted wife of the late Jeffrey Praczkajlo; cherished mother of Jennifer (Shawn) Jump; loving babcia of Lily Jump; also survived by many beloved family members and friends who became her family. A Celebration of Life will be held at a later date.

Editor's Note: "Kathy P." as she was better known to us at Silver Lake was an annual summer visitor for most of the last number of years at the invitation of Silver Laker Julia Hoffner. She stayed at the Hoffner Cottage, and became known as both the fun visitor with the vivacious smile to the neighbors at the intersection of Haven Ave. and the Ames Walkway. Kathy P. and Julie could be seen walking and talking between the cottage and the Hoffner boathouse where they could be close to the water. She was also occasionally seen at the Saturday morning breakfasts at Stoody Hall. Her stay was anywhere between 4 days and a week where she had the opportunity to develop a love for Silver Lake. She was not yet eligible for retirement when late last week she developed "a cold" and had to remain home from her job. She did not update her condition over the weekend so the local police made a wellness visit and found her deceased on Monday. She was one of those many people who found Silver Lake and friendship for brief respites where she also found new strength and energy to return to work. She is being particularly mourned by those in the Haven/Ames neighborhood. She will be memorialized next summer at the annual Celebration of Life Memorial Service at Epworth Hall.


Brenda Joan Paddock, 82, of Perry, born April 15, 1939, now resides in heaven with her Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Brenda met Jesus as her Savior in 1965. She met him in person on Nov. 14, 2021. She had a beautiful homecoming with music, singing and praying, leading her into Glory. Her last words were “I am well, I am well.”

Brenda’s greatest loves were her family and friends. Brenda had five children with her husband Roger: Don and Daelene Paddock of Florida, Jody and Tim Von Sanden of Pavilion, Bradley and Jeanie Paddock of Warsaw, Jennifer and Paul Guy of Massachusetts, and Nathan and Jill Paddock of Perry.

Brenda dearly loved her grandchildren: Jessica Morillo, Nikki and Clint O’Brien, Luke Paddock, Paul Paddock, Ian and Brooklyn Paddock, Joe and Louana Paddock, Burke and Megan Paddock, Aaron Paddock, Ellen Paddock, Andrew Paddock, Rachael Paddock, Abigail Paddock, Erik and Cassandra Von Sanden, Jacquelyn and Michael Jones, Tim Von Sanden, Brandon and Brandee Paddock, Jamey and Laura Paddock, Peter and Kara Guy, Candy and Jay Waitkevich, Marlo and Ryan Bolger and Jenna and Rory Peterson.

Brenda was blessed and loved her great grandchildren: Chloe, Olivia and Nicholas Von Sanden, Joshua and Jaxon Morillo, Jameson and Cassandra O’Brien, Atlas Paddock, Noah and Ezra Jones, Colton, Brantley and Charlotte Guy, Cameron Waitkevich, Amelia Bolger and Brennen Leonard.

Brenda is also survived by her brother and sister in laws; Frank and Emma Paddock, Viva and Jim Phillips-Richardson and Kurt and Lynn Paddock.

Brenda first started working as a secretary at Perry Central School. She then assisted her husband building Paddock’s Breeding Service. Roger and Brenda together built and ran the Sandsabarn teenage nightclub. Brenda was owner and operator of Serendipity Travel. Brenda’s pleasures included playing organ and piano. She played at a number of area churches along with performing for her loved ones. UPDATED -- Brenda also played with conviction at both indoor and outdoor services at the Silver Lake Institute where her grandson, Luke, sang at Epworth Hall on several occasions and was appreciated by all who heard his inspiring voice.

Brenda was preceded in death by her parents Noble and Freda Buckland, her husband Roger and son Bradley.

A Committal service at West Perry Cemetery will be held tomorrow, Wednesday, November 17 at 11 a.m., followed by a Celebration of Life at LaGrange Baptist Church at 4 p.m.

Memorial donations may be made in Brenda’s honor to the LaGrange Baptist Church 7092 LaGrange Rd. Perry, NY 14530 or to the First Congregational Church P.O. Box 156 Perry, NY 14530. Arrangements completed by Eaton-Watson Funeral Home, LLC. 98 N. Main St., Perry, N.Y. 14530. For more information or to sign the online guest registry please visit

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