Crimes Nearby: Gang Leader Pleads Guilty to Drug Charges

A rundown of this past week's police stories from neighboring communities.

Police Break Up Large Fight in West Hempstead

At least a dozen police cars descended upon the area near Western Beef supermarket and the new West 130 apartment complex in West Hempstead Saturday morning to break up a large fight.

Both marked and unmarked police cars and a Nassau County Police helicopter responded around 6:30 a.m. on Nov. 17 to the intersection of Hempstead Avenue and Westminster Road, where an altercation was in progress. 

A spokesman for the Nassau County Police did not have any details about the fight. 

Bloods Gang Leader Pleads Guilty in 2011 OMC Drug Bust

A Bloods gang leader arrested in a June 2011 Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) raid of an Old Mill Court based crack-cocaine ring pleaded guilty to dealing cocaine Thursday in federal court in Central Islip, according to reports.

Latee Smith was one of 14 people arrested on June 1 in a group that authorities said "dominated the narcotics trade in Rockville Centre's Old Mill Court apartment complex."

According to the United States Attorney's Office, four of the defendants, including Smith, are members of the United Blood Nation (Bloods) — a violent street gang.

Newsday [paid link] reported that Smith, of Hempstead, faces up to life in prison. However, he is likely to get a sentence of 19 to 24 years under a plea agreement.

Teen Driver Charged in Fatal Parkway Crash That Killed 4 Friends

The Queens teen who was the sole survivor in last month's fatal parkway crash in West Hempstead, which claimed the life of four of his friends, has been charged with multiple felonies.

Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice announced Friday that Joseph Beer, 17, of South Richmond Hill, had marijuana in his system when he lost control of his vehicle on Oct. 8 near the West Hempstead exit of the Southern State Parkway, killing his four passengers. Beer has been charged with multiple felonies after testing positive for marijuana.

A grand jury indictment unsealed Friday against Beer charges him with aggravated vehicular homicide, vehicular manslaughter in the first degree, four counts of manslaughter in the second degree, four counts of vehicular manslaughter in the second degree, driving while intoxicated-drugs, reckless endangerment in the second Degree, reckless driving and unlicensed operation of a vehicle. He faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted and is scheduled to be arraigned later Friday in First District Court in Hempstead.

Lynbrook Barber Shop Owner Falls From Roof

The owner of Eddie's Barber shop in Lynbrook suffered a serious fall late Friday morning and was rushed to an area hospital.

The shop owner, later identified as John Lecuit, was on the roof of his store, located at 121 Broadway, making repairs when he fell shortly before 11 a.m., according to an eyewitness.

He was conscious but bleeding profusely from his head when Lynbrook Police and volunteer firefighters from Tally-Ho Company arrived at the scene. He was then rushed to a local hospital in a Lynbrook ambulance.

Patch learned Saturday morning that Lecuit suffered a skull fracture and was listed in critical condition with more surgeries to follow.

Rockville Centre Man Arrested for West Hempstead Bank Robbery

Nassau County Police arrested a Rockville Centre man Tuesday who they say robbed a Bank of America branch in West Hempstead.

According to detectives, Marcus Pettway, 25, of Rockville Centre, entered the Bank of America located at 60 Hempstead Ave. in West Hempstead on Nov. 13 and gave a note demanding money to a teller.

Pettway fled from the bank on foot southbound on Hempstead Avenue after obtaining an unknown amount cash, but officers responding to the call located Pettway around 4:15 p.m. at Hempstead Gardens Drive and Cedar Street, where he was subsequently arrested.

There were six employees and four customers present during the time of the incident but no injuries were reported. The proceeds of the robbery were recovered.   

For police reports, click the following links: Long Beach, Lynbrook, Rockville Centre arrests and incidents, West Hempstead


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