Niagara Falls Car Searched, Nothing Suspicious Found

11:48 PM, Apr 19, 2013   |    comments
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NIAGARA FALLS, NY - Police say only papers and personal belongings were found in a car from Massachusetts that was stopped in Niagara Falls on Friday morning.

Two men in their early 20's were in the car and cooperated with police.

WEB EXTRA: Click here to read Niagara Falls Mayor Paul Dyster's statement on the incident.

Police stopped the vehicle after a call from an Air National Guard member who observed the vehicle on the 190. He told police their actions were suspicious.

"He was in uniform so he felt they weren't making eye contact with him and attempted to evade him from seeing their identity," said Niagara Falls superintendent of police Bryan DalPorto.

"Being very vigilant, he observed the license plate bearing the Massachusetts registration.  He called 911, the police officers were able to get behind the vehicle. At that point, the police officers observed two traffic violations, so that's where the initial traffic stop initiated," DalPorto said.

He says the officers who stopped the car then had "further" suspicions (upon which he did not elaborate) which led them to request of the occupants that they be allowed to search the vehicle, who granted police permission to do so.

"We didn't need a warrant because we got consent to search," said NY State Police Capt. Craig Hanesworth when questioned by 2 On Your Side.

For almost two hours, a NY State Police remote controlled robot, equipped with a camera, removed items from the car including two backpacks, a couple of duffle bags and two sleeping bags.

Those items were inspected, but found to contain nothing more than personal items and papers.

Residents were asked to stay away from the area while the vehicle was searched.

The two occupants of the vehicle, who had been detained during the search, were eventually sent on their way.

DalPorto declined to identify them, because they had only been cited for minor traffic infractions, and were not charged with any crimes.

He said the pair was in the area to visit friends, and decided to make a side trip to see the world famous Niagara Falls.

The FBI was aware of the situation and the joint-terrorism task force assisted the NYSP.

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