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Crimes Nearby: Ruling on 1984 Lynbrook Rape-Murder Lawsuit

A rundown of police stories from neighboring communities.

Three Men Rob Teen of Phone in Valley Stream

A teenage boy was robbed of his cell phone by three men on Saturday, one of whom had a handgun, police said.

On Dec. 8 at 9 p.m., the 16-year-old male victim was riding his bicycle on Sydney Place and Green Acres Road East when three black male suspects approached, according to police. One of the men — described as 5 foot 6 inches, about 190 pounds with short brown hair and wearing a brown puffy waist length jacket — lifted his shirt, displayed a dark colored handgun and demanded the victims’ cell phone. The teen complied and the subjects fled on foot westbound on Green Acres Road.

No injuries were reported. No description was given on the remaining two subjects. 

Detectives ask that anyone with information about this crime or any listed below should contact Nassau County Crime Stoppers at 1-800-244-TIPS.  All callers will remain anonymous.

Community National Bank Robbed With Fake Bomb

Community National Bank in Rockville Centre was robbed Friday morning after a suspect told the bank manager he had brought a "device" into the bank.

According to detectives, the suspect entered Community National Bank, located at 333 Merrick Road, around 11:50 a.m. and requested to speak to the bank manager.

Police said that after entering the manager’s office, the suspect placed a brown folder on the desk, told the manager it was a robbery and demanded money. The suspect also indicated that the folder contained a "device."

After obtaining an undetermined amount of cash, the suspect left the folder on the manager’s desk and fled the bank on foot heading westbound on Merrick Road, police said.

The arson/bomb squad responded to the scene and determined the folder to be non-hazardous.

Four employees and no customers were present in the bank at the time of the robbery, but no injuries were reported.

The subject is described as a white male, mid to late 50s, approximately 5-foot-9 to 6-feet tall, stocky build, wearing a dark gray overcoat.

Masked Man Assaults Rite Aid Worker, Steals Money

A masked man made off with cash after he punched an employee of a Valley Stream Rite Aid and demanded to be brought to the safe, police said.

On Friday, Dec. 7, at 12:35 a.m., the 18-year-old male victim, who works at the Rite Aid at 198 West Merrick Rd., was approached by a man wearing a black jacket and black ski mask with a white design on the side, according to police. The suspect demaned to be taken to the safe and punched the victim.

The employee brought the masked man to the safe, and the suspect punched and kicked the victim several more times. The man then fled in an unknown direction with an undisclosed amount of money.

Two other store employees and two customers were in the store at the time of the incident. They did not witness the crime.  No injuries were reported.

Men Assault, Shoot at Man in Valley Stream Home

Two men assaulted a man in his Valley Stream doorway before one of them shot at him, according to police.

On Wednesday, Dec. 5, at about 3:10 p.m., the 28-year-old male victim was at his Charles street home when he heard a banging on the door, police said. The victim left the house and approached the two men to “ask why they were there.”

One of the men — described as black, 5 foot 7 inches and 160 pounds and wearing a black and red hooded-sweatshirt — punched him in the face. The second suspect — described as black, in his 20s, 5 foot 9 inches with a medium build and wearing a red hooded-sweatshirt — took out a handgun and fire one shot at the victim as he rank back into his home.

The suspects fled in a late model dark blue BMW 5 series driven by a third black man.  No injuries were reported.

Jury Rules in Favor of NCPD in 1984 Lynbrook Rape-Murder Case

The three men convicted of the 1984 rape and murder of a 16-year-old girl in Lynbrook sued Nassau County six years ago for more than $190 million in damages after new DNA evidence exonerated them. But a verdict in the case was finally reached last Thursday when a federal jury in the Eastern District of New York ruled in favor of Nassau County.

Had the jury sided with the three plaintiffs — Dennis Halstead, John Kogut, and John Restivo — it could have "broken the fiscal back of this county," Nassau County Attorney John Ciampoli stated during a press conference last Friday.

"Our police department has been vindicated, and these litigants have been denied a chance to turn what, in my opinion, is a heinous crime into a payday that would cripple Nassau County," Ciampoli stated.

Halstead, Kogut, and Restivo were charged in 1985 with raping and murdering 16-year-old Theresa Fusco, of Lynbrook. Fusco was found on Dec. 5, 1984 raped and strangled near the Hot Skates roller rink on Merrick Road, where she had been working. The three men were sentenced to more than 30 years in prison, but were released in 2003 after new DNA evidence showed the semen found on the girl's body belonged to another man and the convictions were overturned.

A few years after they were freed, the trio then sued seven former Nassau County Police detectives, alleging that they forced Kogut to falsely confess to the crimes against Fusco during interrogations.

According to The New York Times, Kogut, then 21, had given a videotaped confession, which he later recanted, saying that Fusco had voluntarily gotten into a van near Hot Skates with him, Restivo and Halstead, and the four drove to a nearby cemetery. There, he said Restivo and Halstead allegedly raped the girl, and then persuaded him to strangle her.

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

Tony January 06, 2013 at 04:35 AM
Sorry, someone doesn't confess to doing this type of thing if they were innocent. Something is wrong with this supposed dna testing, society for letting these animals go free. Not just in this case but many others.

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