Concord man extrdicted from Arkansas to face Opechee Point lewdness charge

LACONIA — The man who allegedly exposed himself to a group of minors at Opechee Park Point on September 1 was arrested recently in Arkansas and transported to N.H by the United States Marshall's Service.

Daniel King, 53, whose address is listed as homeless in Concord, was arraigned on one felony charge of indecent exposure and lewdness Wednesday morning at the 4th Circuit Court, Laconia Division.

He is being held in the Belknap County Jail on $50,000 cash-only bail.

According to affidavits from the court, Laconia Police said they received a report that an adult male was exposing himself in front of young children but that he had left the area.

Police reviewed video footage obtained from the Laconia Middle School located at the edge of the park and saw a subject fitting the description given by the children driving a green Ford Explorer that he parked by the loading ramp.

The subject walked down the path behind the school toward Opechee Point and is seen several minutes later exiting the path. The video shows the green Ford leaving the school grounds.

While examining the video, police were able to get a license plate number and matched it to King, who is the owner of the car.

On September 19, police met with King at the Concord Police Department. In that meeting, he initially denied being in Laconia within the past few months. Once he was shown several photos of him and his car at the Middle School, he remembered passing through Laconia while en route to the Belknap Mall.

On September 1, he remembered eating dinner with a friend at a Union Avenue restaurant and said he was with here the entire day. He continued to deny being on Opechee Point or in that general area.

On September 24, police monitored a interview with an 11-year-old female gave a very good description of King and told police he was manipulating his genitals with one hand while exposing them with the other.

After the interview, she was given a photo line up of eight men and picked King out of it after looking for only a very short time. When asked how sure she was based on a scale of 1 to 10, she said 8.

Later that day, police also got a call from the woman with whom King professed to have spent the entirely of September 1. The woman told police initially she spend the whole day with him.

When police told her about the videos obtained from the school and told her that he had been convicted of of sex offenses involving children as young a 6-years-old, she said she was unaware of that and told police she needed some time to thing about it.

The next day she said she had severed all ties with King but wouldn't fill out a written statement about September 1.

Affidavits said King is a Tier III registered sex offender who is required to report for sex offenses against a 6-year-old following a 1991 conviction. His record also shows convictions for disorderly conduct in 1988 and three count of indecent exposure and lewdness in 2006.

A warrant was issued for his arrest and he was located by police in Garland County, Arkansas.

King has a probable cause hearing scheduled for January 15.

Police say man survided drug OD

LACONIA —  Police are investigating a non-fatal drug over dose that occurred Tuesday afternoon on Lafayette Street.
The 30-year-old man was taken to Lakes Region General Hospital by ambulance.
Police have not identified the type of drug the man is believed to have been using.
If anyone has any information please call the Laconia Police at 524-5252 or the Greater Laconia Crime Line at 524-1717.

2014 ends on note that faithful to rest of the year, lawmakers & commissioners trading barbs

LACONIA — The year ended as it began, with the Belknap County Convention and the Belknap County Commission at daggers drawn on New Year's Eve over the county operating budget, when the Executive Committee of the convention met to consider the commission's requests to transfer funds to cover payroll at the county nursing home.

Altogether the commission presented six requests totaling nearly $100,000, of which $73,165 was required to meet the payroll for the nursing home that falls due at the end of this week. The remainder of the funds were requested to defray fuel and utility bills.

The committee approved the transfers to meet payroll, ensuring the uninterrupted operation of the nursing home, but denied one request to pay a fuel bill and tabled requests to pay water and sewer bills.

Representative Herb Vadney (R-Meredith), convened the meeting in response to what the commission described as an emergency, explaining that without funds to meet the payroll, the staff of the nursing home would have to sent home. The situation arose from the temporary injection issued in August by Justice James D. O'Neill of the Belknap County Superior Court prohibiting the commission from spending more than the convention appropriated for the year from any line item or transferring more than $300 from one line to another without the approval of the executive committee.

Vadney opened the meeting by remarking that "most of us have had a hard time believing that this last minute crisis couldn't have been been foreseen." He said that others "did better than this 30 years ago before computers with pencils" and lamented "the level of brinksmanship on both sides during the last several weeks."
He was echoed by Representative Brian Gallagher (R-Sanbornton), who suggested the county administrator and finance director could have more accurately projected expenditures.

Commissioner Ed Philpot (D-Laconia) noted that in January the convention rewrote the budget recommended by the commission with little or no advice from either the department heads or the commissioners. In particular, the convention failed to fund the increased cost of health insurance for county employees as required by the collective bargaining agreements with the unions representing them.

To meet the county's contractual obligations in that area, the commission transferred funds, prompting the convention to file the suit resulting in the injunction. Philpot said that since August funding the operations of the county and complying with he court's order has posed a day-to-day challenge for the county administration.

After the meeting Philpot said that in criticizing the commission and administration for failing to accurately project expenditures, the committee was overlooking the fact that the convention, not the commission, made the projections and prepared the budget. He anticipated that actual expenditures would more closely approximate the appropriations originally recommended by the commission than those made by the convention.

Representative Michael Sylvia (R-Belmont), who alone dissented from the vote to fund the payroll at the nursing home, pointed out that most of money was drawn from a $50,000 appropriation by the convention to hire two correctional officers. Noting that the commission refused to hire the officers, Vadney remarked that the appropriation was "turned into a slush fund". Philpot reminded Vadney that although the convention appropriated funds for the officers' wages, it withheld funding for their health insurance, without which they could not be employed.

"You knew that," Philpot said.

The committee declined to approve transfers to pay fuel and utility bills, which are payable in January, because they did not represent an emergency. Finance Director Glen Waring confessed he was "confused" after being taken to task for failing to project impending expenditures in a timely manner then being denied the means to meet expenses projected well in advance.

"This goes back to the two-year argument we've been having, " Vadney replied. He said that new county commissioners will take office next week and "this will give them something to do."

After 8 years, today is Drew Seneca’s last day of serving lunch downtown

LACONIA – After eight years of serving New York-style deli sandwiches and homemade soups, Drew Seneca of the Downtown Deli is calling it quits with today being his last official day.

For the last two years, Seneca had been operating the lunch counter at the Laconia Antique Center – operating it much the same way as during its heyday in the 1950s and 1960s when the building was J.J. Newberrys, and getting a seat at the lunch counter could involve a long wait.

"It's just not here," said Seneca yesterday afternoon as he served three teenagers "frappes" or what the rest of the world calls milkshakes.

Seneca and his wife Elisa opened the Downtown Deli on Pleasant Street about eight years ago. As the recession set in, the Senecas looked to scale down their operation and jokingly thought they would move it to the recently opened Laconia Antiques Center.

Laconia Antiques Center owner Charlie St. Clair didn't think it was a joke and the Senecas gave it a whirl.

They added ice cream treats to the menu, continued serving locally-roasted coffee and Seneca donned the white coat of a soda shop operator. Elisa went to work elsewhere, and for Seneca it was a one-man show.

He said many people would come in and "wax nostalgic" about how their grandparents used to take them to the soda bar and buy them a "frappe," some ice cream or a burger.

"There's just not enough money coming in to keep it going," Seneca said yesterday.

Seneca said he is very emotionally involved in the Downtown Deli and downtown Laconia. He said he'll miss all the people who used to come in and visit, noting it was a favorite stop for many people – but just not enough of them.

"Hey, I don't want it to go," he said yesterday. "I really wanted this to work out."

The Downtown Deli is the second downtown Laconia eatery to close this month. The Vintage Cafe closed just before Christmas.

Charlie St. Clair, owner of the Laconia Antiques Center, said that he was sorry to see Seneca leave. "It's definitely been lots of fun," he remarked. "I'll miss him trying to educate people that frappes are really shakes." Pointing to Seneca pictured at the lunch counter by New Hampshire Magazine, St. Clair said "that's how we should look." Although he has no immediate propsects, St. Clair expects to have the lunch counter and ice cream parlor up and running again. "It's a simple turnkey operation," he noted.

Seneca is hosting a New Year's Day party at the Antique Center beginning at 1 p.m. and all of his friends who play music with him will be coming to join him.

"There'll be all kinds of music," he said.

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