Times of Middle Country

Detectives charged a man with second-degree murder this week, just days after his wife was found dead in their Lake Grove home.

The Suffolk County Police Department said Paul Leitgeb injured his own wrist and throat, threatened to further harm himself and threatened officers before he was taken into custody on Tuesday. Cops had tracked him to a hiking trail in Pawling, N.Y., and authorities from the state police, the Dutchess County sheriff’s office and the Metro-North police extensively searched the area before a state canine team found the suspect on the Appalachian Trail that day.

Police allege that Leitgeb, 49, murdered his wife, 42-year-old Tricia Odierna. The SCPD said last week that Odierna was found dead in their home on Win Place in Lake Grove on Oct. 1, and authorities believed the woman’s cause of death was criminal in nature.

Her body was discovered as Suffolk County patrol officers responded to a 911 call that afternoon and entered the house, near Hawkins Avenue. The woman was publicly identified a few days later.

Attorney information for Leitgeb was not available Thursday. Police said he was treated for his injuries at a hospital in Poughkeepsie before being transported to a hospital in Suffolk County for further treatment, and would be arraigned when he is released.

Detectives from the SCPD’s Homicide Squad are still investigating the alleged murder. Anyone with information is asked to call them at 631-852-6392, or to call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 800-220-TIPS.

Drops Centereach, 4-1, in enemy territory

Huntington junior defender Mark Rafuse heads the ball away from the net. Photo by Desirée Keegan

By Desirée Keegan

We’ll be seeing the Huntington Blue Devils this postseason.

With a 4-1 win over Centereach Tuesday, the Huntington boys’ soccer team sealed its fate as the team moved to 7-1-1 in League II, guaranteeing them a spot in the playoffs.

Huntington senior forward Carlos Rivera stops the ball to change direction. Photo by Desirée Keegan
Huntington senior forward Carlos Rivera stops the ball to change direction. Photo by Desirée Keegan

“Clinching playoffs is nice,” Huntington head coach John Pagano said. “The score makes it look as if we won by a big margin, but I still don’t feel we played the way I think we could.”

Huntington senior forward and co-captain Carlos Rivera put the first point on the scoreboard after taking a short pass off a corner kick and up to goal and shooting the ball into the right corner of the net.

With 5:02 remaining in the first half, senior midfielder and co-captain Wilber Parada scored on the inside left corner off a serve into the box from the right side, for the 2-0 point advantage.

Centereach wouldn’t go down quietly though, and with 1:30 left in the half, junior forward Elmer Alfaro scored on a straight shot up the center, to cut Huntington’s lead, 2-1.

“They played hard,” Centereach head coach Jon Galfano said of his Cougars. “There were a couple of mistakes on the field, but you have to give Huntington credit, too. They set up some beautiful plays.”

Centereach opened the second half with several attempts, but it was Huntington’s Rivera who scored the next goal, off another short pass off the corner kick.

“I have to be proud of my guys, because they never give up, they never quit,” Galfano said. “As a coach, especially at the high school level, that’s all you can hope for, because the kids keep fighting.”

The game grew physical between the two teams, and Pagano said he was pleased with how his team handled the situation.

Centereach defender and co-captain Nick Gennardo tries to get the ball out of Cougars territory. Photo by Desirée Keegan
Centereach defender Nick Gennardo tries to get the ball out of Cougars territory. Huntington midfielder Wilber Parada fights him. Photo by Desirée Keegan

“The game got very physical and actually could have gotten out of hand, but my guys were able to keep their composure,” Pagano said. “They realized the importance of all of these games down the stretch and how we can’t afford to have a player thrown out because of a fit of anger, so I liked that, and our finishing was good. We scored four good goals.”

Centereach junior goalkeeper Jared Steiger made several diving saves to keep the score close, but with the net being pounded, seven saves were not enough.

“I felt good,” Steiger said of his work between the pipes. “There were a few I think I could’ve got, though. As a team, I think we played alright, but we could’ve played better. I think we need to control the middle of the field better.”

With 10:35 left to play, Huntington senior midfielder and co-captain Olvin Palma scored after rocketing a shot on net from nearly 30 yards out, which surprised Centereach’s defense, leaving it with little time to react.

On the opposite side of the field, sophomore goalkeeper Nat Amato, who is in his first year with the team, made some key saves. He made a total of five.

“I felt pretty confident,” he said of being in net, adding that the players have been warm and welcoming to the new addition. “This team has great chemistry, since they’ve all been playing together since they were young. It’s a great team.”

While the Blue Devils are excited for another postseason appearance, the team’s main goal is having a home playoff game.

“We haven’t had a home playoff game in a real long time,” Pagano said. “I think we’re on track to do it. This is a really, really good group of kids, and as you continue to win games, you start to think that maybe a county final run isn’t out of the question. So right now, the way we’re playing, I think we have as good a shot as anybody.”

Robert Cariddi, of Mount Sinai, was arrested yesterday for burglarizing 16 businesses between August and October. Photo from the Suffolk County Police Department

Police arrested a Mount Sinai man Monday for allegedly burglarizing 16 Asian restaurants and nail salons over the last couple of months in Centereach, Selden, Setauket, Miller Place, Rocky Point, Sound Beach, Patchogue, Bohemia and Middle Island.

According to the Suffolk County Police Department, 6th Squad detectives, after noting a pattern of burglaries in which someone broke the front windows at the restaurants and nail salons and took cash, began patrolling potential targets similar to the burglarized businesses. On Monday, Detective Michael Fales allegedly observed suspect Robert Cariddi commit a burglary at Ho Ming Kitchen, on Route 25A in Miller Place.

Cariddi, a 49-year-old Mount Sinai resident, was arrested shortly afterward. He was charged with 16 counts of third-degree burglary and with false personation, and was scheduled to be arraigned on Tuesday.

Attorney information for the suspect was not immediately available.

According to police, Cariddi allegedly targeted the businesses because they did not have alarms or surveillance systems.

Detectives are investigating whether Cariddi was responsible for other burglaries. Anyone with information is asked to call them at 631-854-8652, or to call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 800-220-TIPS.

Funding would increase for snow removal, environment

Brookhaven Town Supervisor Ed Romaine. File photo by Erika Karp

By Giselle Barkley & Elana Glowatz

Brookhaven Town won’t ask for more money from residents next year, according to Supervisor Ed Romaine’s 2016 budget proposal.

Romaine (R) revealed his nearly $281 million budget plan at a meeting on Oct. 1, touting its benefits of complying with the state-imposed limit on property tax increases and putting more funding toward snow removal as the winter season approaches.

Crafting the budget was a challenge given the tight limit on how much the property tax levy could increase, according to Romaine — the state’s limit was 0.73 percent this year. Despite that, “I support the tax cap because I understand what the tax burden is on the taxpayers of this town,” Romaine said during a meeting with the press last week. “I’m trying to do my best to limit that tax burden while providing needed services and that’s crucial, and our five-year plan reflects that.”

According to the budget proposal, the town’s property tax levy will not see a net increase in 2016, holding taxes steady for many residents. Romaine was able to maintain the levy because of the amount of money the town will save from satisfying debts. Some of the money that would have gone toward those debt payments was used instead to fund increases in other budget lines. When money from the town’s debt reserve fund is excluded, the budget proposal actually reduces overall spending more than $800,000.

“That’s come from careful management of capital projects and the elimination of pipeline debt,” Finance Commissioner Tamara Wright said during the meeting.

Just as there were cuts in the budget, there were also additions. Romaine proposed bringing the highway department’s snow removal budget up to $5.2 million — a budget line the supervisor and the town board have been adding to since the massive February 2013 storm, frequently dubbed Nemo, that buried Long Island under three feet of dense snow. That removal budget has doubled in the last few years.

“I hope that someday we will have a less snowy winter,” Romaine said.

Town officials hope any leftover snow removal money will be deposited into a reserve account, to be used in an emergency winter weather situation.

The supervisor’s proposal also increases spending on environmental protection and funding for public safety staff, code enforcement and internal auditors, among others.

Romaine’s proposed capital budget totals $62.2 million, a reduction of about 2.4 percent from the current year. The capital funds will go toward local projects like long-awaited athletic fields in Selden and road and drainage improvements.

The author, second from right, hiking at Mt. Monadnock in New Hampshire, with fellow WWOOFers, from left, Matt Cook, Greg Mizar and Camille Horace. Photo by Melanie Glissman

By Stacy Santini

This is the last installment of a four-part series. Miss part three? Read it here.

Jack Kerouac did it, John Steinbeck did it; there is something to be said about being on the road. Not for everybody, there are countless moments when the vexation of it all can be overwhelming. Living out of suitcases and spending more time crouched over a steering wheel than being vertical most definitely takes a toll, but for me, those inconveniences were small in comparison to what I was feeling and the perspective I gained. 

“My life is my message.”
 Mahatma Gandhi

After so many years of ignoring the spirit that now guides me, I felt completely and utterly free, treasuring every mile of my journey. Revelation upon revelation unfolded itself and I got to know a person that had been a stranger for all too long — myself.

I unfolded my crumpled-up bucket list and placed check marks where there had been blank spaces, and WWOOFing it in New England served as a springboard to extraneous adventures I took advantage of while I was away.

During my time in the Northeast, I was able to reconnect with my family in Concord, New Hampshire, and stay with dear friends I don’t often get to see in Exeter. Sitting around dinner tables, breaking bread and talking to familiar faces was a comfort.

I felt empowered and strong as a result of farming and did not feel out of my comfort zone when I read poetry at an open mic in Portland, Maine or dined al fresco in Saratoga Springs. There were strange faces along the way that quickly became native as I was invited to join them to observe jam bands at local venues.

Friendships were made and alliances amongst my fellow WWOOFers were welcomed. I took my Southern California comrades from Owen Farm to Melanie and Matt’s organic farm in Fitzwilliam, New Hampshire, to hike and assist them in turning sap into maple syrup in the sugar shack.

Charlie, my morkie, and I traveled west to our beloved Catskills, walked part of the Appalachian Trail and held fort in New Paltz for several days, shopping at Groovy Blueberry and chowing down with a women’s motorcycle club at The Gilded Otter.

Returning home was not easy, as there was so much more I wanted to explore, but I have learned to trust timing, and without hesitation I know that Charles Crawford and I will one day again be road warriors embarking on the unknown. I am not sure whether or not I thought I would return to Long Island a farmer, but regardless, I knew I would come home different and better for this undertaking. Mission accomplished.

Stacy Santini is a freelance reporter for Times Beacon Record Newspapers. If you would like to find out how to become a WWOOFer, visit www.wwoofusa.org.

Update, Oct. 5, 10:15 a.m.: Police identified the deceased woman found in a Lake Grove home last week as 42-year-old Tricia Odierna.

A woman found dead in Lake Grove on Thursday afternoon was killed, according to the Suffolk County Police Department.

The case began when patrol officers responded to a 911 call at 1:50 p.m., entering a house on Win Place, off of Hawkins Avenue. Police said the officers found a dead woman inside.

Authorities had not released the woman’s identity by Friday morning.

According to police, the woman’s death is believed to have a criminal cause.

Detectives from the SCPD’s Homicide Squad are investigating the incident. Anyone with information is asked to call them at 631-852-6392, or to call Crime Stoppers anonymously at 800-220-TIPS.

Kings Park cash theft
A 25-year old woman from Wyandanch was arrested after police said she stole money from a resident’s home on Hileen Drive in Kings Park sometime between Aug. 28 and Aug. 29. She was arrested on Sept. 25, at the 4th Precinct, at 8:27 p.m. and charged with petit larceny.

Taking the greens from Walgreens
At Walgreens on East Main Street in Smithtown, on Sept. 27, an unknown man stole four boxes of blood sugar level test strips at 7:04 p.m.

Heroin is Hero-out
On Sept. 25, an 18-year old man from Ronkonkoma was arrested on Dorchester Road in Smithtown after police said he had possession of heroin on him and a hypodermic syringe at 12:30 p.m. He was charged with seventh degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and possession of a hypodermic instrument.

Theft at Sevs
At 7-Eleven, on North Country Road, in Village of the Branch, on Sept. 25, an unknown person stole a bicycle that was left unlocked in the parking lot at 1:40 p.m.

From cell phone to cell holding
Police said a 27-year old man from Plainview was arrested for stealing security cameras from Street Walk Cell Phone Accessories kiosk at the Smith Haven Mall in Lake Grove on Sept. 8 at 7:30 p.m. He was arrested at the 4th Precinct on Sept. 25 and charged with petit larceny.

No more sushi for sush-you
On Sept. 23, a 45-year old man from Plainview was arrested at the 4th Precinct, at 9:23 p.m., for stealing on two different occasions according to police. On Feb. 28, he stole sushi from a ShopRite in Hauppauge and on Apr. 30, at 3:58 p.m., he stole grocery items from a business on Portion Road. He was charged with petit larceny.

Under the sheets
A 30-year old woman from St. James was arrested on Sept. 23 at the 4th Precinct for a previous theft on Aug. 17. Police said she stole bed sheets from a residents home on Ronkonkoma Avenue at 11:28 a.m. She was charged with petit larceny.

A sweet bluetooth
On Sept. 8, police said a 40-year old woman from St. James stole a Wii remote, Bluetooth headset and an HDMI adaptor at 8:17 p.m., from Centereach Mall in Commack. She was arrested at the 4th Precinct at 12:26 a.m. and was charged with petit larceny.

Knuckle to see here
A 24-year old man from Wyandanch was arrested on Sept. 24, on the corner of Jericho Turnpike and Townline Road in Commack, at 11:08 p.m., when police said he had possession of a metal knuckle knife and marijuana He was charged with fifth degree criminal possession of marijuana and fourth degree criminal possession of a weapon.

Red cards all around
Four teens were arrested on Sept. 30 for damage police said they caused earlier that month. Cops said four 17-year-olds —Nicolas Collins and Eric Lamay, both of Greenlawn, and Michael Plackis and Julius Dimino, both of East Northport — drove a vehicle on soccer fields at the Northport Soccer Park in Northport sometime between Sept. 11 at 9 p.m. and Sept. 12 at 7 a.m. and caused an estimated $10,000 worth of damage. In photos capturing the damage, some of the fields were observed covered in tire marks, rendering them unusable. All four were charged with second-degree criminal mischief. Attorney information for the individuals wasn’t immediately available.

Crybaby
A man stole three baby monitors, valued at approximately $300, from a Target in East Northport on Deposit Road on Sept. 10 at 10:30 a.m. 

Hit and run
A 19-year-old man from Huntington was arrested on Sept. 27 after police said he struck a woman to the ground and ran off with her purse at 4:30 p.m. on West 22nd Street in Huntington. Police said he then resisted arrest and gave false identification when he was finally apprehended. He was charged with petit larceny, second-degree robbery, causing physical injury, resisting arrest and false impersonation.

Hunger pains
A woman was reported to have stolen grocery items and makeup from Waldbaum’s on Pulaski Road in Greenlawn on Sept. 27 at 7:30 p.m.

It’s art
On Sept. 25, a man from Commack was arrested at the 2nd Precinct for a crime police said he committed on Sept. 8. Police said he spray-painted security cameras at The Red Barn and Motel in Elwood at 12:05 p.m. He was charged with third-degree burglary and illegal entry with intent.

Hide ya kids, hide ya bike
A resident of Derby Avenue in Greenlawn reported that two unknown subjects entered the person’s garage at 7:15 p.m. on Sept. 24 and fled with a mountain bike.

Just wanted to rock out
A 33-year-old man from Huntington was arrested for throwing a rock through a glass window of a Payless ShoeSource on Jericho Turnpike in Huntington at 5:50 p.m. on Sept. 25. He was arrested at the scene and charged with third-degree criminal mischief with intent to damage property.

Wrong kind of a mixer
Police said a 23-year-old woman from Nesconset possessed a controlled substance and marijuana at 7:40 p.m. on Sept. 25 on the corner of Broadway and Grafton Street in Greenlawn. She was charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and possession of marijuana.

Not cool for school
A 40-year-old man from Huntington Station was arrested at Huntington High School at 7:40 p.m. on Sept. 25 for driving while intoxicated, according to police. He was taken to the 2nd Precinct and charged with aggravated driving while intoxicated.

One way to make an impact
On Sept. 27, police said a 33-year-old man from Huntington Station stole an impact driver tool from Home Depot in Huntington Station at 4:30 p.m. He was charged with petit larceny.

Uncoachable
On Sept. 24, someone told police that two male employees of Huntington Coach Corporation got into a verbal disagreement on Deposit Road in East Northport at 6 p.m.

Wake and bake mistake
Police said a 38-year-old man from Port Jefferson Station was arrested for operating a vehicle while ability impaired by drugs. The man was allegedly driving a 2001 GMC Yukon down Jeanne Avenue and Nancy Drive on Sept. 26 at 9:30 a.m., swerving and running through stop signs. Police discovered him in possession of marijuana and arrested him at the scene.

Booze and blunders
A 31-year-old man from Sound Beach was charged with operating a vehicle while ability impaired on Sept. 25. Police said the man was driving a 2001 Volkswagen north on Old Town Road in Port Jefferson Station that night when he got into a car crash. Police discovered the man was intoxicated and arrested him at the scene.

Police are irresistible
On Sept. 26 at 2:45 a.m., a 45-year-old man from Miller Place was charged with resisting arrest. Police were interviewing the man about an undisclosed case on Wedgewood Lane in Miller Place when the man began harassing an officer. The man then resisted as police arrested him.

Three times the fun
Police said a 50-year-old man from Ronkonkoma was arrested on Sept. 26 for unlicensed operation of a vehicle after driving a 1984 Suzuki north on Holbrook Road in Lake Ronkonkoma. Police have revoked his license three times in the past.

What’s in a name?
A 29-year-old man from Port Jefferson Station was arrested for false impersonation on Sept. 26 on Campo Avenue in Selden after he gave an officer a name other than his own. Police didn’t say why officers were speaking to the man.

Signaled out
On Sept. 25, a 19-year-old man from Hauppauge was arrested for operating a vehicle while impaired by drugs. Police pulled him over after he turned left onto Nicolls Road without using his turning signal and discovered that the man was impaired.

Minor mishap
Police said a 51-year-old man from Ronkonkoma was arrested for selling tobacco to minors in Stony Brook on Sept. 24, after police said he sold tobacco to two 17-year-olds.

A bite at the beach
A 19-year-old man from Sound Beach was arrested on Beach Street for obstructing governmental administration, harassment and resisting arrest on Sept. 26, around 1:25 a.m., after stepping in front of police as they conducted an investigation. The man then refused to put his hands behind his back when police arrested him. Once the man was in the police cruiser, he bit an officer who was buckling the man’s seat belt.

Fender-bender buzz
On Sept. 27, around 1:46 a.m., police arrested a 29-year-old woman from Miller Place for driving while ability impaired. Police said she was driving a 2008 Jeep west on Route 25A in Rocky Point when she got into a car crash and police discovered she was intoxicated.

What a steal
Police said a man stole a 2007 Honda CRS on Sept. 26 around 2:30 p.m., from a residence on Dayton Avenue in Port Jefferson Station. Police said the victim put an ad on Craigslist to sell the car and received a response from an unidentified person who was interested in the Honda. When they met to discuss the car, the man got into it and drove off.

Shady thief
An unidentified person stole two sunglasses from a 2013 Jeep parked on Mount Sinai Avenue in Mount Sinai on Sept. 26.

Cell phone swiped
On Sept. 26, an unidentified person went into the Kohl’s on Route 25A in Rocky Point and stole a woman’s cell phone.

A tasty target
Police arrested a 48-year-old woman from Lake Grove on Sept. 25 for petit larceny. The woman stole assorted food and other items from the Target on Pond Path in South Setauket.

Mad for makeup
A 37-year-old woman from Port Jefferson Station was charged with petit larceny on Sept. 26 after she stole makeup from the Walmart on Nesconset Highway in East Setauket. Police arrested her at the scene.

Sod off
On Sept. 25 an unidentified person drove an all-terrain vehicle and damaged seeded crops at the DeLalio Sod Farm in Shoreham.

Clean getaway
Police said an unidentified person stole soaps, body wash, men’s clothing and two laundry baskets from the Centereach Mall on Sept. 27.

Barn break-in
An unidentified person cut a lock at a Dairy Barn on Middle Country Road in Selden on Sept. 27 around 2:31 a.m., attempting to enter the property, but police said nothing was stolen and the suspect fled the scene.

Cash and cards
Someone stole cash and credit cards from a 2015 Honda Pilot on Sept. 25, while the car was parked in a parking lot on Nesconset Highway in Stony Brook.

File photo by Arlene Gross

The North Shore is bracing for what the National Weather Service called a hazardous weather outlook in effect for Suffolk County from Thursday, Oct. 1 until Tuesday, Oct. 6.

Heavy rains are possible later this week through the weekend with the potential for gale force winds Friday and Saturday, according to weather reports. Highway Superintendent Dan Losquadro (R) said his department was tracking the storm and preparing for a swift response.

“Currently, there are conflicting reports for the track of Hurricane Joaquin and my staff and I will be diligently tracking this storm,” Losquadro said. “The Brookhaven Highway Department has its equipment ready and our crews will be out working to address whatever this storm may bring our way.”

Losquadro said if residents see downed wires during this time, they should stay away from them and simply report them to PSEG immediately at 1-800-490-0075. To report a Highway related issue, residents can call (631) 451-9200.

Residents should also make sure to keep ice in a cooler and have plenty of food and water in their homes, as well as batteries in case of a power outage. Losquadro said it was important to keep cell phones fully charged and use them as little as possible in case of a power outage.

Residents can quickly report an outage by texting “OUT” to PSEGLI (773454), which will send confirmation that an outage has been submitted and will begin receiving ongoing updates as the status of outage changes. This requires one time registration. To register text REG to 773454.

By Joe Galotti

On Saturday afternoon, the Smithtown West football team found the end zone a half dozen times before halftime, and put an exclamation mark on the school’s homecoming weekend festivities with a 48-28 victory over Centereach. The Bulls improved to 3-0 on the season, and were able to celebrate Smithtown’s 350th anniversary in style.

“This was just another step in the right direction,” Smithtown West head coach Pete Cerullo said. “The offense and defense executed the way they were supposed to. It was a great win, and I’m proud of our team.”

Senior quarterback Daniel Caroussos led the Bulls’ offensive assault in the game, doing plenty of damage with both his arm and his legs. The senior threw for a touchdowns and 163 yards, and ran for 74 yards and three touchdowns.

“This week of practice we prepared well,” Caroussos said. “The scout team gave us a great look. We knew what they were going to come out with.”

Centereach senior quarterback Nick Juvelier also put together a memorable day. He completed 24 of 40 passes, and threw for 321 yards and three touchdowns.

“I got to give credit to my receivers, really,” Juvelier said. “I just got a lot of playmakers around me.”

Centereach senior wide receivers Justin Eck and Mark Pirollo, and junior wide receiver Rob Montgomery all finished with touchdown receptions for Cougars on the day. Even though the team found success through the air, it was Smithtown West that was in control, from nearly start to finish.

Junior running back James Caddigan Jr. opened the scoring for the Bulls with a 7-yard touchdown run just 3:53 into the game. With 1:40 remaining in the opening quarter, Caddigan Jr. struck again, this time, with a 12-yard rushing touchdown.

Before the end of the first, Caroussos broke the game open for Smithtown West with a 25-yard rushing touchdown on a keeper play, which gave the Bulls a 21-0 advantage.

In the second quarter, Caroussos threw and ran for a touchdown. Smithtown West also scored on an interception by senior linebacker Daniel Varello, which he returned 25 yards to the end zone. The Bulls took a healthy 34-point lead into halftime.

The Cougars did manage to show signs of life in the second half, outscoring their opponent 21-7 in the game’s final 24 minutes. Despite the final score, Centereach head coach Adam Barrett still has of faith in his team moving forward.

“We were 2-0 before we came into this game, and we know what it takes to win,” Barrett said. “Now we got to get back on track.”

The Cougars will look for a bounce-back performance, when they host Half Hollows Hill East this Saturday at 2 p.m. Meanwhile, red-hot Smithtown West will be back at Robert W. Pratt Field this Friday night, when they welcome No. 2-seeded Riverhead. Kickoff is scheduled for 6 p.m., and Caroussos said his team will be ready for the challenge.

“This game was a huge confidence booster for us, especially going into next week,” he said. “That’s going to be a great competition for us. We’re expecting that to be a great game.”

Stock photo

Thirteen more mosquito samples have tested positive for West Nile virus in Suffolk County, bringing the total this year to 192, according to Dr. James L. Tomarken, the county’s health commissioner.

The samples were collected from Sept. 15 through Sept. 17, from the following areas: three from West Babylon, one from North Patchogue, one from Selden, one from Patchogue, one from Port Jefferson Station, one from Setauket, one from South Huntington, one from Bay Shore, one from Islip, one from Holbrook and one from Smithtown.

One human has tested positive for West Nile this year. The 55-year-old man from the Town of Islip was admitted to a local hospital in late August upon experiencing symptoms consistent with the virus, according to a Suffolk County Department of Health Services statement on Sept. 11.

The virus, first detected in birds and mosquito samples in Suffolk County in 1999 and again each year thereafter, is transmitted to humans by the bite of an infected mosquito.

“The confirmation of West Nile virus in mosquito samples indicates the presence of West Nile virus in the area,” Tomarken said. “While there is no cause for alarm, we urge residents to cooperate with us in our efforts to reduce the exposure to the virus, which can be debilitating to humans.”

To reduce the mosquito population around homes, residents should try to eliminate stagnant water where mosquitoes breed. Other tips include disposing of tin cans, plastic containers, ceramic pots or similar water-holding containers; removing discarded tires on the property; making sure roof gutters drain properly, and cleaning clogged gutters; turning over plastic wading pools and wheelbarrows when not in use; changing the water in birdbaths; cleaning vegetation and debris from the edges of ponds and keeping shrubs and grass trimmed; cleaning and chlorinating swimming pools, outdoor saunas and hot tubs; and draining water from pool covers.

Most people infected with West Nile virus will experience mild or no symptoms, but some can develop severe symptoms including high fever, headache, neck stiffness, stupor, disorientation, coma, tremors, convulsions, muscle weakness, vision loss, numbness and paralysis, according to Dr. Tomarken. The symptoms may last several weeks, and neurological effects may be permanent. Individuals, especially those 50 years of age or older, or those with compromised immune systems, who are most at risk, are urged to take precautions to avoid being bitten by mosquitoes.

There are a number of ways to avoid mosquito bites. Residents are advised to minimize outdoor activities between dusk and dawn; wear shoes and socks, long pants and long-sleeved shirts when outdoors for long periods of time or when mosquitoes are more active; use repellent; and make sure all windows and doors have screens.

To report mosquito problems or stagnant pools of water, call the Suffolk County Department of Public Works’ Vector Control Division at 852-4270.

For medical questions related to West Nile virus, call 854-0333.

To learn more about how mosquitoes are captured and tested for mosquito-borne diseases in Suffolk County, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EtaO-GkF8Yc

To learn more about how mosquitoes are prepared for West Nile virus testing, visit https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ebOvsdiln-8.

For further information on West Nile virus, visit the Department of Health Services’ website: http://www.suffolkcountyny.gov/Departments/HealthServices/PublicHealth/PreventiveServices/ArthropodborneDiseaseProgram/PreventingMosquitoBorneIllnesses.aspx

Social

9,391FansLike
0FollowersFollow
1,155FollowersFollow
33SubscribersSubscribe