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Centereach

Setauket Patriots Plan Caravan Despite Village Summons for Previous March. Photo by Steven Zaitz

Coming to a town near you: another Trump caravan.

The Setauket Patriots announced they would be hosting a Trumpalozza Road Rally event starting and eventually ending in Port Jefferson Saturday, Oct. 17.

A copy of the summons received by Setauket Patriots, posted to Facebook.

Setauket Patriots organizer James Robitsek said he expects 800 to 1,000 participants. On the group’s Facebook page, a little over 400 say they will be attending, with more indicating they possibly may. 

The car caravan is just the third event hosted by Setauket Patriots, an online right-wing group that often posts in support of President Donald Trump (R), among other conservative and far-right messaging. Previous events have been based on Fourth of July and Veterans Day celebrations, though each has carried a strong political tinge in support of Trump. Out of these other past events, this one is the most explicit in its support.

The caravan is to start in the parking lot of the Port Jefferson LIRR train station before moving down Main Street then turning left onto West Broadway. Cars are set to move onto Route 25A in Setauket, down into St. James along Lake Avenue, past the Smith Haven Mall. The caravan will move through Centereach and Selden before turning onto County Road 83 and back onto Route 112 to finish back at the Port Jeff train station.

Robitsek said he has been in contact with Suffolk County police about the event, and though they might be around to facilitate cars leaving the parking lot, they will not be there for the entire run of the car parade.

Other car caravans in support of Trump have passed through the North Shore in the past month. Several went from Huntington out to the North Fork, where people hung out sunroofs and stood in the back of pickup trucks. Pictures also show people in the caravan had placed tape to obscure their license plates, which is against the law. 

Robitsek said he has not advocated that drivers use tape on their license plates, but participants in other pro-Trump events have been outed online by people tracking their license numbers.

Despite this, police report nobody in the caravans has been arrested to date, though one resident from Northport was arrested by Northport police for alleged menacing and disorderly conduct involving a caravanner’s truck, something he has reportedly heavily disputed.

The planned caravan is only three days before Robitsek and the Setauket Patriots are set to be in village traffic court, Oct. 20, over their previous Veterans Day event, which drew hundreds down through the village without a permit. Most marching that day did so without masks.

Village of Port Jefferson had issued an executive order signed July 6 by Mayor Margot Garant effectively stopping the village from signing any new permits for marches or protests. This was in response to the Patriots’ July 4 car parade as well as a Black Lives Matter march hosted in Port Jeff in June. The order was enabled by the village’s previous declaration of emergency because of the COVID-19 pandemic, and Garant has said the issue is with how many people these events bring together during a pandemic.  

On Facebook, Robitsek said they were issued a summons on Oct. 5, and claimed local officials from village, county and state were targeting him and his group.

“I’m being unfairly targeted because I’m a pro-Trump group in an all-Democrat town,” he said, adding the reason they chose Port Jeff as their starting point was “its high visibility, it’s a Democrat-run village, so why not show support for the silent majority that does support President Trump.”

Village officials have previously said the Patriots submitted a permit application for the July 4 event, but that they failed to file it correctly, and that they did not pay fees attached to the permit process. 

The Setauket Patriots organizer posted the summons online, which said the offense was because they “led a procession/parade down a public sidewalk without a permit” in violation of village code. The Setauket Patriots have also planned a rally in front of Village Hall Oct. 20 in protest of receiving the summons.

Deputy Village Attorney Rich Harris said the summons was only for the violation of the village code, which depending on a plea or a court ruling could result in a 0 to $2,000 fine or up to 15 days in jail. On its face, the violation does not have anything to do with recouping losses from either police or constable’s overtime.

“It’s a violation of the village code for operating a parade or procession without permit,” Harris said.

Whether this event could also be in violation of village code depends on how the event proceeds, Harris said. It could be different, especially as most people will be in vehicles and that the caravan will not be exclusive to Port Jeff.

The car caravan is scheduled for the same day and time as the Greater Port Jefferson Chamber of Commerce’s Pumpkinmania, that’s set to bring in professional pumpkin carvers to do live demonstrations as well as host a pumpkin carving contest. 

Barbara Ransome, executive director of the chamber, said she is not worried that the caravan would impact the chamber’s event. Pumpkinmania will be held 12 to 7 p.m. and will be located at 138 E. Main St. in the small brick patio area. There will also be a set of pumpkin carving contests for Port Jefferson residents, one for children and one for adults, that will be judged by the professionals. There is a $5 entrance fee for each participant.

Ransome said the caravan of cars will likely have already moved on, and there will be plenty of time afterward for people to come down. The chamber event is also designed to promote the small businesses on East Main Street.

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File photo

Suffolk County Police detectives said they are investigating the death of a woman found in a wooded area in Centereach Sunday, Oct. 11.

Police said 6th Precinct officers responded to a 911 call reporting a female body lying in a wooded area off of Hawkins Road, near Eastwood Boulevard, at around 12:10 p.m.

Jaclyn D’Andrea, 33, of Bellmore, was pronounced dead by a physician assistant from the Office of the Suffolk County Medical Examiner. An autopsy was performed and the cause of death is under investigation.

Police are asking anyone with information on this incident to contact detectives at 631-852-6392.

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File photo

Suffolk County Police reported a Centereach man was seriously injured Sunday night in the parking lot of a local bar.

Police said Gary Harnig, 48 of Centereach, was standing in the parking lot of Jack McCarthy’s Pub, located at 2582 Middle Country Road, when he was struck by a vehicle at around 10 p.m, Oct. 11. Harnig was transported to Stony Brook University Hospital in serious but stable condition.

The motor vehicle, described as a white pickup truck, fled the scene southbound on Lake Grove Boulevard, according to police.. Detectives are asking anyone with information on the crash to contact the 4th Squad at 631-854-8452 or Crime Stoppers at 800-220-TIPS (8477). All calls will remain confidential.

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Bethel Hobbs Farm's Run the Farm will be going virtual this year. Funds support the farm in its community endeavors. File photo from Councilman Kevin LaValle's office

Bethel Hobbs Community Farm is taking its annual fundraiser virtual Saturday, Sept. 5 through Sunday, Sept. 13.

Brookhaven Town Councilman Kevin LaValle (R-Selden) announced he will co-sponsor the sixth annual Run the Farm Four Mile Challenge with Suffolk County Legislator Tom Muratore (R-Ronkonkoma) and Friends of Hobbs Farm. Participants are invited to lace up their sneakers and traverse the four-mile course that includes a fast start on roughly two miles of flat terrain leading to a mile of rolling hills and two mildly challenging ascents before concluding at the historic grounds of Bethel Hobbs Community Farm in Centereach. The first 300 participants will receive a 4M Run the Farm buff and be entered in a special raffle. To register, people can visit BrookhavenNY.Gov/RunTheFarm. 

People can run or walk whenever they like. After running, they can go to www.elitefeats.com/Results and click on the Bethel Hobbs event to enter their name and time. They can also optionally upload up to five photos.

Proceeds will go toward repairing the Hobbs Community Farm barn that is critical to the farm’s functions, whose mission is devoted to providing fresh, wholesome produce to local food pantries and other programs in the community. Even if one doesn’t run, they can make a donation for any amount and be entered in the raffle to win a special prize. This year’s event is sponsored by ShopRite of Selden, owned and operated by the Gallagher family and Middle Country Automotive (MCA) of Selden and MCA II of Centereach.

“Hobbs Community Farm plays such an important role in the community and they rely on this annual event to continue their good work,” LaValle said. “I am proud to once again join Legislator Muratore to help make this year’s virtual ‘Run the Farm Four Mile Challenge’ a success and I thank the runners and our sponsors for their support.”

People can call LaValle’s office at 631-451-6647, email at [email protected] and visit BrookhavenNY.Gov/RunTheFarm for more information.

Suffolk County police car. File photo

Suffolk County Police arrested four people the night of July 29 for allegedly selling E-liquid nicotine, in the form of JUULpods, to minors at businesses located in Mount Sinai, Medford, and Centereach.

In response to community complaints, 6th Precinct Crime Section officers, in conjunction with representatives from the Suffolk County Department of Health Services Tobacco Regulation Enforcement Unit, conducted an investigation into the sale of E-liquid nicotine to minors, during which five businesses were checked for compliance on July 30 between 6 p.m. and 11 p.m. Those businesses that were found to not be in compliance were issued a notice of violation by the Suffolk County Department of Health.

The following clerks were arrested and charged with unlawfully dealing with a child 2nd degree after they sold E-liquid nicotine to a minor:

  • Nalin Kaushik, 22, employed at Barcode Hookah and Smoke Shop, located at 39 Route 25A in Mount Sinai
  • Dylan Kincel, 19, employed at Vapor Nation, located at 331 Route 25A in Mount Sinai
  • Anthony Mazza, 21, employed at Hookah City, located at 2717 Route 112 in Medford
  • Mario Hawk, 24, employed at Hemp Clouds, located at 1515 Middle Country Road in Centereach

All four clerks were issued Field Appearance Tickets and are scheduled to appear in First District Court in Central Islip at a later date.

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Kenneth Regan, of Centereach, has been charged with murder on a New Jersey interstate.
Photo from Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office

Centereach man Kenneth Regan, 21, was charged with alleged murder, attempted murder and various weapon offenses in New Jersey last Thursday after a week-long investigation by that state’s detectives. He was charged alongside an Eastport man, Douglas Coudrey.

New Jersey State Police said they responded to a 911 call Jan. 18 at around 12:15 a.m. reporting shots fired on Interstate 80 West in Lodi, New Jersey. Responding police said they found a vehicle in the middle lane with the driver, 27-year-old Luis Perez of the Bronx in the driver seat with gun shots to his neck and chest. He was pronounced dead at the scene. Two other passengers, also of the Bronx, were in the car, and one is in critical but stable condition and the other was uninjured.

The investigation brought investigators to Coudrey’s Eastport residence, and when police tried to stop Coudrey, Regan and a third male in their vehicle, the alleged perpetrators fled, crashed into a fence and were subsequently arrested. Police later found a .22 caliber rifle modified to be used as a submachine gun and a sawed-off shotgun.

Both men were charged in New Jersey. Suffolk County police and the district attorney’s office were said to have aided in the investigation and apprehension of the alleged perpetrators.

Attorney information for both men was not available.

Photo from SCPD

Suffolk County Crime Stoppers and Suffolk County Police 6th Precinct Crime Section officers are seeking the public’s help to identify and locate the man who allegedly stole merchandise from a South Setauket store this month.

A man stole a Dyson vacuum from Target, located at 265 Pond Path,  Jan. 3 at approximately 12:20 p.m. The vacuum was valued at approximately $300.

Suffolk County Crime Stoppers offers a cash reward of up to $5,000 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, utilizing a mobile app which can be downloaded through the App Store or Google Play by searching P3 Tips or online at www.P3Tips.com. All calls, text messages and emails will be kept confidential.

The Comsewogue girls basketball team continued their pre-season winning ways in a non-league matchup against Centereach Dec. 9. The Warriors downed the Cougars 39-27 to make it five in a row. Comsewogue senior Veronica Riddick topped the scoring charts for the Warriors with nine points and 10 rebounds. Teammate Lindsay Hanson banked eight and Annalise Russo and Danielle McGuire netted seven points each.

Both teams have one more non-league contest before hitting the road to begin league play Dec 17. The Cougars travel to Smithtown West searching for a win and the Warriors take on Deer Park both, games tipoff at 4 p.m.

 

Rocky Point senior Gavin Davanzo drives by a defender in a non-league matchup Nov. 29. Photo by Bill Landon

Rocky Point struck first and often in their 2nd non-league game of the pre-season against visiting Centereach, besting the Cougars 56-41 at home Nov. 29. The Eagles hit the road for another non-League contest against Comsewogue Dec. 4 with a 5:45 p.m. start, before their home opening league debut against Hauppauge Dec. 6. Game time is 6 p.m.

Centereach will play Ward Melville at home Dec. 3 and travel to Commack two days later for a pair of non-league starts, with both game tip off at 5:45 p.m. They will conclude its pre-season when it travels to Sachem East Dec. 10 for a 6:15 p.m. start. League play for the Cougars begins on Dec. 17 with their home opener against Smithtown West. Game time is 6 p.m.

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Liam Whitworth
Updated: Liam Whitworth was located in Stony Brook Aug. 3, unharmed.
Suffolk County Police have issued a Silver Alert for a missing man who has been diagnosed with depression and may be suicidal.
Liam Whitworth, 21, who was residing in Centereach, went missing from his residence on Callan Lane Aug. 2 at approximately 6:30 p.m. after leaving a suicide note. He was last seen driving a 2009 Silver Nissan Sentra with NY license plates AGG-4918. He is 5 feet 9 inches tall and approximately 140 pounds, with blue eyes and brown hair. He has family in Rocky Point and employment in Lake Grove.
Anyone with information on Liam Whitworth’s location is asked to call 911 or the 6th squad at 631-854-8652.
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.