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04/16/09 06:52 AM

Couple, son indicted in theft of safe

By Matt Gryta

A Buffalo woman who had been paralyzed by a former boyfriend four years ago has been indicted along with her son and her current boyfriend in connection with the theft of a safe containing more than $50,000 in cash and jewelry from a Grand Island home two years ago.

Susan Moore, 42, who uses a wheelchair; her son, Paul Cole, 19; and her boyfriend, David Lafko, 47, all of the same Breckenridge Street address, pleaded not guilty at their arraignments Wednesday before Senior Erie County Judge Michael L. D’Amico.

Brian P. McNamara, chief of the Erie County district attorney’s County Court Bureau and chief prosecutor in the case, said an investigation continues for more suspects in the daylight break-in Sept. 19, 2007, at what he would only describe as a businessman’s Grand Island home.

McNamara said the continuing investigation confirmed that the safe and its contents, none of which has ever been recovered, were taken by Cole and another suspect still being sought, to the Breckenridge Street home he shares with Moore and Lafko. Cole was indicted on felony burglary and stolen property charges. Moore and Lafko were only indicted on stolen property counts.

Court officials said Cole and Moore were both held on $5,000 bail while Lafko was held on $2,500 bail.

All the defendants could get prison terms of up to 15 years because the theft involved property worth more than $50,000.

Three years ago, Felix Angel Medina, now 30, was ordered by State Supreme Court Justice John F. O’Donnell to serve a 6z-year prison term for driving his car over Moore twice at her former Grand Island home in March 2005, leaving her paralyzed from the waist down. Medina also was charged with cocaine trafficking.

In 2006, O’Donnell granted Moore a conditional discharge on her non-criminal plea in a child-endangerment case and ordered her to permanently stay away from Medina because that relationship had temporarily cost her custody of her three children, including Cole.