Late Friday night, a man with two prior DWI convictions and nine license suspensions was arrested on charges of again driving drunk.
Deputies were called to an accident at 11:40 p.m. on Sandridge Road in Alden. James Denk, 40, of Cowlesville struck a tree in the yard of a home.
Officers say Denk was intoxicated and placed him under arrest for felony DWI, felony aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, operating a vehicle without an interlock device, refusing to take a breath test, speeding and failure to stay right.
Denk was one of five people arrested by the Erie County Sheriff’s Office in a 24-hour period from around 2:30 a.m. Friday until 2:30 a.m. Saturday.
The first arrest occurred at 2:30 a.m. Friday at Transit and Wehrle Roads, when deputies initiated a traffic stop over a load muffler. Officers say the driver, Andrew Brobbey, 27, of Buffalo had three active suspensions on his license. He was arrested and charged with aggravated unlicensed operation and an exhaust violation.
Six hours later, John Barber, 32, of Grand Island was cited for the same charges when he was stopped on East River Road on Grand Island. Deputies say Barber’s license has seven active suspensions for failing to answers summons in Amherst, Lockport, Pendleton, Town of Tonawanda and City of Tonawanda.
Around 7:30 p.m. that evening, Jessica Vanaerman, 20, of Buffalo was charged after allegedly failing to stop at a stop sign and crashing into another vehicle. Deputies responded to Genesee and Warner Gulf Roads in Sardinia and determined Vanaerman was traveling at an unreasonable speed and failed to stop. Her license was also suspended. She was charged with aggravated unlicensed operation, speeding, and failure to stop.
Casey Podsadowski, 22, of Lockport was the final person charged. Troopers say he crashed a vehicle into a ditch around 2:20 a.m. Saturday at Sesh and Goodrich Roads in Clarence and then fled the scene. The owner of the vehicle was contacted and police determined the owner’s son had been driving. Podsadowski was contacted and charged with aggravated unlicensed operation and leaving the scene of an accident.