BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) - Some Buffalo mothers have been asking for help getting a sex offender out of their neighborhood. A lawmaker came up with an idea months ago, but hasn't made it happen yet.
This is an update to a story we told you about last winter regarding a Lovejoy neighborhood where a councilman promised to build one more playground to prevent sex offenders from living nearby.
Last February, Councilman Rich Fontana said, "Not hard at all, I'll build it myself if I have to."
Fontana said he could build a playground near the end of Gold Street to prevent more sex offenders from moving in because the most serious offenders are not allowed to live within 1,500 of any park or school.
But seven months later, Karen, a Lovejoy parent, said, "We went to our councilman for help, I mean that's what we're supposed to do. He promised us a playground and it's going to be winter, there's still no playground, we have three times the amount of sex offenders living here now."
On her phone, Karen showed us the locations of seven within a couple blocks. Three offenders live within five houses of her on Gold Street.
"Our whole life has changed. I mean, you worry about keeping your windows open, and keeping the safety [devices] on the windows and doors locked and chains locked and your kids out of your sight for 10 seconds and you're having a panic attack because what if she got out the front door and he's walking by at the same time with his little dog?" said Karen.
Fontana responded, "Unfortunately, the law is concentrating the sex offenders in a few short blocks."
Councilman Fontana says he is finally close to keeping future offenders out by building a passive park at Davey and King Street, even though it has taken longer than he expected.
Fontana said, "Well we picked a lot over on Gold Street, but that lot turned out to be unbuildable. It was only two-feet wide, and we didn't check the records to see the width. We saw the length, we didn't see the width, so we lost a few months there. But now we were able to assemble this lot here at the end of Davey Street. We'll call it King Street Park and we're going to move forward with this land becoming a park in September on the Common Council."
Fontana expects the small park to be done by Thanksgiving. No sex offenders would have to move out, but any new offenders could not move in within a quarter-mile.
Hundreds of workers, politicians and residents of Chautauqua County rallied in Dunkirk calling on state regulators to approve plans for NRG to convert and reopen a power plant.
Police are following up on some leads to find out who killed 30 year-old Desirae James. Friends and family held a vigil Saturday night.
Volunteers at Buffalo’s Salvation Army created holiday cards and gift bags for the seniors at the Golden Age Center.
Buffalo police homicide detectives have identified an Eggertsville man who was shot and killed early Saturday morning.
Seventy-two years after the attack that launched the US into World War II, Western New Yorkers remembered the fatal day at Pearl Harbor Hawaii.
The abandoned puppy in the Town of Evans was actually turned in by the dog's owner.