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Local Matters

Saturday
Nov182017

Center Moriches Man Fatally Stabbed Mother 

 

Suffolk County Police have arrested a man who fatally stabbed his mother in Center Moriches, New York last night.

Christopher Storm HarrisonChristopher Storm Harrison stabbed Joyce Skarka during a domestic dispute at their home, located at 31 Union Ave., at 9:41 p.m. Skarka, 53, was pronounced dead at the scene by the Suffolk County Chief Medical Examiner.  

Homicide Squad detectives charged Harrison, 26, with Murder 2nd Degree.

Harrison will be held at the Seventh Precinct and is scheduled to be arraigned at First District Court in Central Islip on November 19.

The investigation is continuing. Anyone with information is asked to call the Homicide Squad at 631-852-6392 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS. 

 

A criminal charge is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Saturday
Nov182017

Police Make Two Arrests In Kings Park For Selling Alcohol To Minors

 

Suffolk County Police have arrested two people during a month long investigation at businesses located within the Fourth Precinct.

Fourth Precinct Crime Section officers conducted an investigation into the sale of alcohol to minors during which nine businesses were checked for compliance with the law.

The following clerks were arrested and charged with Unlawfully Dealing with a Minor 1st Degree after they sold alcohol to a minor.

  • Thomas Watson, 22, of Northport, employed at Speedway gas station, located at 152 East Northport Road, Kings Park
  • A 16 year-old male juvenile, employed at BP gas station located at 94 Pulaski Road, Kings Park.

 The following establishments were in compliance:

  • Shell gas station, located at 700 Commack Road, Commack
  • BP gas station, located at 621 Commack Road, Commack
  • Citgo gas station, located at 100 Crooked Hill Road, Commack
  • Speedway gas station, located at 2104 Jericho Turnpike, Commack
  • Speedway gas station, located at 38 Indian Head Road, Kings Park
  • Mobil gas station, located at 819 W. Jericho Turnpike, Smithtown
  • BP gas station, located at 1007 W. Jericho Turnpike, Smithtown

 

Watson and the juvenile were issued Field Appearance Tickets and are scheduled to appear in First District Court in Central Islip on January 2, 2018. The State Liquor Authority is conducting a follow up investigation.

 

A criminal charge is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

 

Friday
Nov172017

Two Men Convicted Of Robbery And Burglary Charges For Home Invasion

Two men convicted of robbery and burglary charges for 2016 home invasion

Defendant Jason Montello, 39, Defendant Paul Torres, 44A jury in Riverhead this afternoon found two Suffolk County men guilty of burglary and robbery charges for their roles in an armed home invasion in Farmingville in August of last year.

Defendants Jason Montello, 39, of Bay Shore and Paul Torres, 44, of Middle Island were tried together before Judge Timothy Mazzei.   The jury began its deliberations two days ago and convicted the pair of two counts of burglary in the first degree, two counts of robbery in the first degree, three counts of burglary in the second degree, and two counts of robbery in the second degree. The trial began on October 16.

Torres and Montello were arrested in Selden in December of last year for the home invasion at 17 Chestnut Avenue in Farmingville on August 4, 2016.

Montello still faces trial on one charge of robbery in the second degree for a holdup on October 16 last year at the Rocky Point 7-11 on Route 25A.  Torres will be tried for an attempted burglary of a home on Sunflower Lane in Islandia from September of last year, and two counts of criminal Possession of stolen property.  Torres also has charges pending for introducing prison contraband as a felony.

Judge Mazzei remanded the pair to the county jail to await their sentencing on January 9, 2018.  Both Montello and Torres face sentences of 25 to life in prison.

Thursday
Nov162017

Ronkonkoma Man Pleads Guilty To Manslaughter In Fatal Overdose

 

Guilty plea to manslaughter and drug dealing

James FavaA 30-year-old Ronkonkoma man pleaded guilty today to manslaughter and drug possession charges in Riverhead.

The defendant James Fava of Ronkonkoma sold Bryan Gallagher of Oakdale narcotics that resulted in Bryan Gallagher’s death from fentanyl intoxication on July 18, 2016.

The investigation found text messages and other communications between the defendant and Mr. Gallagher establishing the fact that the victim purchased what he believed to be heroin from James Fava numerous times between the end of June and the day he was found dead in his home, a needle and a spoon found next to his body.  He was 27 years old.

During the course of the investigation detectives learned Fava sold narcotics to Gallagher and others out of his residence on Wildwood Road in Ronkonkoma where he lived with his parents.

State Supreme Court Justice William Condon will sentence Fava to two to six years in prison on January 11, 2018.  Fava will receive two to six years imprisonment on the manslaughter charge and four years imprisonment for his conviction for sale of a controlled substance in the third degree.

Speaking before the court before the defendant’s guilty plea, Mr. Gallagher’s father and sister said the family was in favor of securing a state prison sentence for the defendant to send a message to others who deal narcotics that they will be held accountable for their actions, particularly when their crimes result in death.  

The Gallagher family is in the process of establishing a foundation in the victim’s name.

Fava’s conviction is the first in Suffolk County history on a manslaughter charge for dealing narcotics resulting in a fatal overdose.       

 

Wednesday
Nov152017

***Silver Alert Veronica Bripernauth***

Silver Alert

Veronica Bripernauth  has been located, unharmed.

As a reminder, Silver Alert is a program implemented in Suffolk County that allows local law enforcement to share information with media outlets about individuals with special needs who have been reported missing.

 

Wednesday
Nov152017

Skimming Device Found At M&T Bank Hauppauge

Wanted for Criminal Mischief

Release Date: November 15, 2017

Suffolk County Crime Stoppers and Fourth Squad detectives are seeking the public’s help to identify and locate the man who damaged an ATM in Hauppauge in July.

A man entered the vestibule area of M&T Bank, located at 140 Adams Ave., on July 20 and placed a skimming device in the ATM’s card reader. A second man may have been acting as a lookout. 

One of the suspects is described as a white male in his 30s with a thin build. The second suspect had a medium to heavy build and is in his 20s. 

Suffolk County Crime Stoppers offers a cash reward of up to $5,000 for information that leads to an arrest. Anyone with information about this crime is asked to call anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS. All calls will be kept confidential.

Authority:  D/Lt. Michael Crowley CC# 17-424599  Fourth Squad Detectives CW# 17-426/MK

Tuesday
Nov142017

Police Officer Arrested For Menacing

Suffolk County Police today arrested and charged a Suffolk County police officer with menacing for an off-duty incident that occurred on November 5.

Gregory Hanrahan, 32, became involved in an interaction with three females during which he pointed a handgun in their direction on West Main Street in Patchogue on November 5 at 1:44 a.m.

Hanrahan, a two-year member of the Department assigned to the Seventh Precinct, was immediately suspended without pay and his handguns were seized. In addition to the criminal charges, a Department internal investigation is underway.

Hanrahan was charged with three counts of Menacing 2nd Degree. He is scheduled to be arraigned in First District Court in Central Islip later today.

A criminal charge is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

 

Monday
Nov132017

Two Women Arrested After Robbing Commack Speedway Convenience Store 

 

Suffolk County Police have arrested two women who robbed a Commack, New York, gas station early this morning.

Amber Edey and Cassandra Cruz entered the Speedway convenience store, located at 1173 Jericho Turnpike, wearing ski masks and gloves at approximately 3:10 a.m. Cruz went behind the counter and demanded cash while Edey motioned as if she had a gun in the pocket of her hooded sweatshirt. The employee opened the register and Cruz removed cash from the drawer. Both of the women fled on foot.

Suffolk County Police Aviation Section and Canine Section officers responded and a local broadcast was sent out. Fourth Precinct Police Officer Christopher Freisem located Edey on Apple Lane in Commack and took her into custody.  Fourth Precinct Police Officer Johncarlo Justincic arrested Cruz at the Commack Motor Inn, located at 2231 Jericho Turnpike, Commack.

Fourth Squad detectives charged Edey, 24, of Amityville, NY, with Robbery 2nd Degree. Cruz, 31, of Lindenhurst, was charged with Robbery 2nd Degree, Unlawful Possession of a Radio Device, Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance 7 and an outstanding warrant for Petit Larceny.

Edey and Cruz will be held at the Fourth Precinct and are scheduled to be arraigned at First District Court in Central Islip on November 14.

A criminal charge is an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Monday
Nov132017

Guilty Plea From Driver Who Struck Postal Work Severing Leg

Driver charged with striking mail carrier pleads guilty

Stefano BelloisiThe driver who struck a postal worker standing at the rear of his mail truck in North Babylon last April today pleaded guilty to assault, vehicular assault and other charges during a scheduled court conference.

State Supreme Court Justice Fernando Camacho will sentence Stefano Belloisi of Deer Park to four years in state prison on December 14 in Central Islip. 

Belloisi, 52, was driving a 1998 Lincoln Continental when he veered off the road and hit the mail carrier, the mail truck a fire hydrant and a telephone pole.  The postal worker suffered a severed leg.

Belloisi is incarcerated in the county jail in lieu of $100,000 cash bail.

Monday
Nov132017

Man Killed In Hit-And-Run Crash Brentwood

Suffolk County Major Case Unit detectives are investigating a hit-and-run crash that killed a pedestrian in Brentwood early this morning.

Luis Felix Gomez-Cuji was crossing Suffolk Avenue, just west of Eastern Avenue, when he was struck by a vehicle that fled the scene. A passing motorist found Gomez-Cuji lying in the roadway and called 911 at approximately 3:20 a.m.

Gomez-Cuji, 26, of Bay Shore, was pronounced dead at the scene by a physician assistant from the Office of the Suffolk County Medical Examiner.

Suffolk County Police Major Case Unit detectives have determined that the vehicle involved in the fatal hit-and-run crash on Suffolk Avenue in Brentwood on November 5 is a 1998 to 2002 red, burgundy or maroon Toyota Corolla.  

Detectives are asking anyone with information on this crash to call the Major Case Unit at 631-852-6555 or anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.