Wanted man arrested in Saranac Lake

SARANAC LAKE — Saranac Lake village police located and arrested a wanted man last week who fled from court-ordered drug rehabilitation treatment.

The Saranac Lake Police Department was contacted by the Oneida County Sheriff’s Office last week and asked for help in the search for Anthony P. Chandler, 39, of Rome, a former resident of Saranac Lake and a former Paul Smith’s College student who fled from St. Joseph’s Addiction Treatment & Recovery Centers.

Chandler had been charged with third-degree attempted criminal possession of a weapon with a previous conviction, a felony, earlier this month, stemming from a gun conviction he got while living in Saranac Lake several years ago.

When he fled St. Joseph’s, the Oneida County Sheriff’s Department acted on a bench warrant from Oneida County Drug Court for his arrest and contacted the SLPD on Nov. 22.

SLPD Chief Darin Perrotte said that on Nov. 22, officers Sgt. Reyanin Brown and Gabby Beebe were given an apartment address at 412 Lake Flower Ave. that Chandler was believed to be staying at with his wife. They located him, brought him into custody without incident and transferred him to New York State Police custody.

The whole investigation took under an hour, Perrotte said. State Police Public Information Officer Brandi Ashley said troopers transported Chandler back to the Oneida County Sheriff’s Department at 12:44 p.m. on Nov. 22 because it was felony transport outside of the village’s jurisdiction.

Chandler was in Oneida County Correctional Facility on Thursday, according to an inmate list from the jail’s records office.

“This is another great example of law enforcement working collaboratively to get this individual off the street and keep our community safe,” SLPD wrote on social media.

Previous charges

In 2018, a search warrant was conducted at Chandler’s residence in Saranac Lake, where police allegedly found firearms, high-capacity ammunition clips and controlled substances.

Essex County Assistant District Attorney Ken Borden said on Thursday that police found two unregistered pistols, which Chandler was not allowed to own in any case because he did not have a pistol permit and had prior convictions. Borden said they also found two assault weapons. All were purchased out of state, he said.

Borden said that Chandler was charged with four counts of third-degree criminal possession of a weapon, a felony, for having four weapons while having a prior conviction. Borden said he was charged with two more counts of third-degree criminal possession of a weapon because two of those weapons were assault rifles.

He was also charged with three counts of seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and criminal possession of a hypodermic needle, both misdemeanors.

Borden said Chandler took a plea deal and pleaded guilty to one count of third-degree attempted criminal possession of a weapon, a slightly lower-ranked felony charge, in October 2021 and was put on five years of probation.

Chandler was also arrested in September 2014, while he was living in Rome, New York on numerous drug and drunk-driving charges after he was found slumped over the steering wheel of a vehicle at a McDonald’s in North Utica. He was allegedly found with heroin, methadone pills and a glass pipe with cocaine residue on it.

Chandler was charged in 2018 by State Police with first-degree rape and first-degree criminal sex act, both felonies, while he was a student at Paul Smith’s College. Chandler was acquitted by a jury in 2019. Paul Smith’s College expelled Chandler.

In 2019, Christian Exoo, who operates the Twitter account @AntiFashGordon, released details on Chandler alleging he was a member of the white supremacist group Patriot Front, had an online history of racism and antisemitism, and had placed neo-Nazi propaganda flyers around Burlington, Vermont.

Exoo investigates people in online hate groups and exposes their identities. He said Chandler first came on his radar in 2017 as a former member of neo-Nazi Traditionalist Worker’s Party.

Exoo said he used open source intelligence methods to connect Chandler to the screen names that Chandler allegedly used in online neo-Nazi groups.


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