Crimes Nearby: Centereach Man Pleads Not Guilty in Fatal DWI Crash

A look at recent criminal activity from around Long Island.

A Centereach man pleaded not guilty to a seven count indictment related to and injured another person in May.

James O'Donnell, 47, was arraigned in Suffolk County Criminal Court on Tuesday on new elevated felony charges of second-degree manslaughter, two counts of second-degree vehicular manslaughter, two counts of second-degree vehicular assault, and two misdemeanor counts of driving while intoxicated.

A grand jury, which handed down the indictment on July 5, found there was sufficient evidence that he recklessly caused the death of 26-year-old Kristin J. Iacono on May 23 while driving with a blood alcohol level above the legal limit of .08.

While he has been in custody for nearly two months, Judge John J. Toomey set new bail at $250,000 cash or $500,000 bond, which he has not posted as of Wednesday.

Suffolk County police said O'Donnell was intoxicated the night of May 23 as he drove north on Holbrook Road in a 1995 Mercury Marquis. The accident occurred at the intersection of Holbrook Road and the North Service Road of the Long Island Expressway. His vehicle struck a 2005 Lincoln traveling west on the service road, driven by Iacono.

Iacono was rushed to Stony Brook University Hospital, where she later died from her injuries. A passenger in her car, Joseph Kemp, 30, of Holbrook, was treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

Up to 15 more charges could be coming for an alleged cat burglar in connection with a home robbery spree from Lindenhurst to North Babylon earlier this year, Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota said at a press Tuesday morning.

Suffolk County Police  of Errol Barham, Jr., 22 of Copiague, on Monday, and charged him with six counts of burglary in the second degree and one attempted burglary in the second degree in Lindenhurst.

Barham was also charged with one count of unlawful possession of marijuana.

Spota said detectives arrested Barham after finding him riding through Sherbrooke Road and Jackson Avenue in North Lindenhurst on July 4 at 1:35 a.m. with a hoodie on, fully covering his head although it was a very hot, humid evening.

Police said they found a mostly empty backpack on his person, containing a box cutter, gloves, pliers and a screwdriver. He was arrested then for possession of burglary items.

A further investigation after obtaining a search warrant for Barham's home found many reported stolen items including jewelry, cameras, laptops, an iPad and credit cards.

Spota said Barham would use a box cutter to slit an opening through screen windows, then push open sliding windows or doors to get into homes usually between 12 a.m. and 4 a.m. while homeowners were sound asleep.

The DA also said Barham could face further charges in up to 15 other home robberies.


A Farmingdale man was one of the drivers   took the life of one woman and left another seriously injured, East Hampton Town Police said Thursday.

Suzanne Lavenas, 69, of Montauk, was attempting to make a turn on South Fox Street in her 2007 Toyota when a 2012 Ford Pickup driven by Thomas Gubitosi of Farmingdale crashed into her car, according to police.

Lavenas was taken to Southampton Hospital, where she was pronounced dead. Her passenger, Frances Berg, 88, of Montauk, survived the crash but is still listed in serious condition at Southampton Hospital.

Gubitosi, 48,  was also taken to Southampton Hospital, but he was later released.

Police have impounded both vehicles to run safety checks and detectives are asking any eyewitnesses to the crash to call 631-537-7575.


A Glen Head man accused of secretly recording activity in the faculty restroom at a South Huntington school plead not guilty Monday in Suffolk First District Court to one count of second-degree unlawful surveillance, a felony.

Making his first court appearence since being arrested April 25, Kevin Clancy, 31, was arraigned then released on his own recognizance by District Judge Gigi Ann Spelman in Central Islip. 

Police say the 31-year-old IT technician, employed by a contracter doing work for the school, took a video recording of an adult using the employee bathroom at Countrywood Primary Center.

According to court documents, the incident occurred on April 12.

An iPhone was  by school officials. 

The case has been adjourned until Sept. 4


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