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Local Matters

Friday
Apr192019

NYSP Looking For Witnesses Of A Two-Car Collision With Fatality

The New York State Police are investigating a two-car collision which occurred at approximately 12:10 a.m. on the Southern State Parkway west of exit 30, Town of Oyster Bay, Nassau County.  Preliminary investigation revealed that the collision occurred when a 2017 Honda Accord traveling westbound in the right lane, struck the rear of a 2019 GMC.  This impact caused the GMC to exit the roadway onto the right shoulder and into the trees.  The operator of the GMC, Mammen T. Chacko, age 69, of North Bellmore, NY was taken to St. Joseph’s Hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

The operator of the Honda, Christopher Gomez-Almendarez, age 23, of North Baldwin, NY was placed under arrest and charged with Vehicular Manslaughter 2nd ( C-Felony), Assault 3rd (A-Misdemeanor) and DWAI-Drugs.  
 
The New York State Police is requesting that anyone who may have witnessed this incident contact State Police Farmingdale at (631)756-3300.  All calls will remain confidential. 

Thursday
Apr182019

Uber Driver Pleads Guilty To Causing Death Of Passenger

DA SINI: UBER DRIVER PLEADS GUILTY TO MANSLAUGHTER FOR CAUSING DEATH OF PASSENGER BY ALLOWING HIM TO CAR SURF

(CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y.) – Suffolk County District Attorney Timothy D. Sini today announced the guilty plea of an Uber driver for causing the death of his passenger by allowing the passenger to ride on the roof of his vehicle on Sept. 23, 2018, in Huntington. The passenger fell off the roof of the vehicle and struck his head on the roadway, causing head trauma which resulted in his death.

Danyal Cheema, 24, of Huntington Station, pleaded guilty today to Manslaughter in the Second Degree, a C felony.

This was a tragic incident that could have been avoided had the defendant not conducted himself in such a reckless manner,” District Attorney Sini said. Our deepest sympathies are with the victim’s family and loved ones.”

Between 12:03 a.m. and 12:35 a.m. on Sept. 23, 2018, Cheema, while operating as a driver for Uber, was driving three teenage boys in his 2010 Toyota Highlander on Cove Road in Huntington.

The passengers asked Cheema for permission to car surf,” or ride on the roof of the vehicle as it was moving, and offered him $70 cash. The passengers ultimately paid Cheema $40 and he allowed them to climb onto the roof of the vehicle while at an intersection.

Two of the passengers, including Ryan Mullen, 15, of Cold Spring Harbor, remained on the roof of the vehicle while Cheema continued driving on Cove Road. Mullen then fell off the vehicle and struck his head on the roadway.

A video of the incident was recorded by the third passenger on Snapchat.

Cheema drove the three teenagers to their destination at a residence in Huntington. Mullen, who had suffered severe head trauma, succumbed to his injuries in his sleep later that day.

Following an investigation by the Suffolk County Police Department’s Homicide Squad and the District Attorney’s Office, Cheema was arrested by Suffolk County Police officers on Nov. 4, 2018.

Cheema will be sentenced by Suffolk County Acting Supreme Court Justice Fernando Camacho at a later date. He faces a minimum of 10 months in jail plus five years of post-release supervision.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Raymond Varuolo and Maggie Bopp, of the Vehicular Crime Bureau.

Thursday
Apr182019

$10K Fast Cash Reward Offered for Arrest

Wanted for Murder

Release Date: April 18, 2019

$10K Fast Cash Reward Offered for Arrest

In conjunction with the one-year anniversary of his death, Suffolk County Crime Stoppers and Suffolk County Police Homicide Squad detectives are seeking the public’s help to identify and locate the person(s) who burglarized a Shelter Island home last year and injured a retired priest, who succumbed to his injuries in April, 2018. 

Rev. Canon Paul Wancura, 87, was found seriously injured in his home, located at 3 Oak Tree Lane, at approximately 12:40 p.m. on March 19, 2018. It was determined the house had been burglarized and jewelry, including the Lucien Piccard Seashark watch pictured, was stolen. Wancura was transported via Suffolk County Police helicopter to Stony Brook University Hospital where he died one month later on April 16. 

Suffolk County Crime Stoppers is offering a fast-cash reward of $10,000 for information that leads to an arrest in this case. The reward will be issued within 72 hours. 

Suffolk County Crime Stoppers offers a cash reward for information that leads to an arrest. Anyone with information about these incidents can contact Suffolk County Crime Stoppers to submit an anonymous tip by calling 1-800-220-TIPS, texting “SCPD” and your message to “CRIMES” (274637) or by email at www.tipsubmit.com. All calls, text messages and emails will be kept confidential.  

D/Lt. Kevin Beyrer  CC# 18-172322   Homicide Squad CW# 19-166/EN              


Thursday
Apr182019

East Islip Man Arrested After Pointing BB gun At Alleged Tailgater

On Thursday, April 18, 2019, at approximately 12:40 p.m., State Police patrols were dispatched to investigate a complaint of a road rage and menacing incident which had taken place on the Southern State Parkway westbound, west of Exit 32 (ST-110), Town of Oyster Bay, Nassau County.  The suspect, Nicholas V. Hollifield, 18 years old, of East Islip, NY, was located on Carlisle Road, in Wantagh, NY, by the Nassau County PD.  The investigation into the incident revealed that Hollifield, while driving a blue 2016 Chrysler 200, pointed a black BB gun at another motorist, after allegedly being tailgated.  Hollifield was charged with Criminal Possession of a Weapon 4th (A Misdemeanor) and Menacing 2nd (A Misdemeanor).  Hollifield is being held at Nassau County Detention awaiting arraignment on April, 19, 2019.        

Thursday
Apr182019

Police Investigating Break In At Occupied Commack Home

Suffolk County Police Fourth Squad detectives are investigating a burglary that occurred at an occupied Commack home last night.

A man entered a Balsam Lane home through a window at approximately 9 p.m. but fled the home with no proceeds when he heard an occupant make noise. The man, whose image was caught on a home surveillance camera, had long sideburns and was wearing a light-colored hooded sweatshirt and a baseball hat.  

A fast-cash reward for $2,500 is being offered for information that leads to an arrest in this case. Detectives are asking anyone with information on the burglar to call the Fourth Squad at 631-854-8452 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS

 

Wednesday
Apr172019

Second Person Comes Forward In Correction Officer Child Abuse Indictment

DA SINI ANNOUNCES INDICTMENT OF SUFFOLK COUNTY CORRECTION OFFICER FOR ALLEGED CHILD SEX ABUSE, OTHER OFFENSES

Suffolk County District Attorney Timothy D. Sini today announced the indictment of a Suffolk County correction officer for allegedly sexually abusing two children, illegally possessing firearms, and illegally possessing items stolen from the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office.

Robert Weis, 55, of Hampton Bays, is charged with two counts of Course of Sexual Conduct Against a Child in the First Degree, a B violent felony; two counts of Sodomy in the First Degree, a B violent felony; Criminal Possession of Stolen Property in the Third Degree, a D felony; and three counts of Criminal Possession of a Firearm, an E felony. Weis was employed as a Suffolk County correction officer since 1995 and is currently suspended from the Office.

“This is the sort of defendant we wish we never had to deal with,” District Attorney Sini said. “The crimes that he is alleged to have committed undoubtedly destroyed lives. We will continue to investigate his conduct and do everything in our power to bring justice to those victims.”

An investigation by the Southampton Town Police Department and the District Attorney’s Office began in March 2019, when an alleged victim reported to police that the defendant had sexually abused him from when he was seven years old to approximately 16 years old. The victim is currently an adult. Weis was arrested by the Southampton Town Police Department on April 4 and a search warrant was executed at his house.

After being alerted to Weis’ arrest through media coverage, a second victim subsequently came forward to police and reported that Weis allegedly sexually abused him when he was under the age of 13 years old.

Weis was arrested in South Carolina in 2016 for allegedly sexually abusing a 13-year-old boy. Those charges are currently pending.

Weis is the adoptive parent of five males and has been a foster parent for approximately 15 years.

The search warrant executed at Weis’ residence on April 4 resulted in the seizure of three handguns, which the defendant possessed illegally, as well as 32 rifles and more than 50,000 rounds of ammunition.

Police also recovered stolen property belonging to the Suffolk County Sheriff’s Office, including bulletproof vests and EMT equipment. Following his arrest in 2016, Weis was placed on modified duty working as a quartermaster for the Sheriff’s Office, thereby having access to the Office’s uniforms, gear and other official property.

Weis was arraigned on the indictment today by Acting Suffolk County Court Judge Karen M. Wilutis. Bail was set at $5 million cash or $15 million bond.

If convicted, Weis faces a maximum sentence of up to 40 years in prison.

Weis is due back in court on April 30.

District Attorney Sini and Southampton Town Police Chief Steven Skrynecki urge any additional victims or witnesses to the alleged abuse by Weis to contact the Southampton Town Police Department’s Detective Division at 631-702-2230.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant District Attorneys Laurie Moroff, of the Child Abuse and Domestic Violence Bureau, and Kevin Ward, of the Public Integrity Bureau, with assistance from Assistant District Attorneys Christina Pinnola and Dana Castaldo, of the Child Abuse and Domestic Violence Bureau.

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


Monday
Apr152019

Pedestrian Fatality On Veterans Memorial Highway Holbrook

Suffolk County Police Fifth Squad detectives are investigating a motor vehicle crash that killed a pedestrian in Holbrook tonight.

A man was crossing eastbound Veterans Memorial Highway when he was struck by a 2015 Nissan Rogue being driven by a Lake Ronkonkoma woman at approximately 8:50 p.m.

The 37-year-old man, whose name is being withheld pending notification of next of kin, was transported via Holbrook Ambulance to Long Island Community Hospital in East Patchogue where he was pronounced dead. The driver of the Nissan was not injured. 

The Nissan was impounded for a safety check. Detectives are asking anyone with information on this crash to call the Fifth Squad at 631-854-8552.

Monday
Apr152019

Medford Man Shot In Face While Sitting In Parked Car

Suffolk County Police Sixth Squad detectives are investigating a shooting that injured a man in Medford early this morning.

Rondell Blue was sitting in a parked car in the driveway of his residence, when an unidentified man approached the vehicle on foot and fired one shot, striking Blue in the jaw. Blue exited the car and went inside the residence. The suspect got into a nearby vehicle and fled the scene.

Blue, 27, was transported to Stony Brook University Hospital for treatment of serious but non-life-threatening injuries. 

The investigation is continuing. Anyone with information about the shooting is asked to call the Sixth Squad at 631-854-8652 or anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS.

Saturday
Apr132019

Pedestrian Fatality on Nesconset Highway

Suffolk County Police Sixth Squad detectives are investigating a motor vehicle crash that killed a pedestrian in Port Jefferson Station today.

Jacob Cindone was driving a 2018 Hyundai Santa Fe westbound on Nesconset Highway, near William Street, when his vehicle struck a woman who was walking in the road at 5:25 a.m.

The pedestrian, Katlin Catalano, 27, undomiciled, was pronounced dead at the scene by a physician assistant from the Office of the Suffolk County Medical Examiner. Cindone, 30, of Miller Place, was not injured.  

The vehicle was impounded for a safety check. Detectives are asking anyone with information on the crash to call the Sixth Squad at 631-854-8652.  

 

Saturday
Apr132019

***Missing Child Alert***

POLICE HAVE JUST REPORTED Evelin Rivas Martinez has been located, unharmed.