Timothy Bolger

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Timothy Bolger is the Managing Editor for the Long Island Press who’s been working to uncover unreported stories since shortly after it launched in 2003. When he’s not editing, getting hassled by The Man or fielding cold calls to the newsroom, he covers crime, general interest and political news in addition to reporting longer, sometimes investigative features. He won’t be happy until everyone is as pissed off as he is about how screwed up Lawn Guyland is.

Ex-Fugitive Gets 3 Years for Conning $1M from Long Island Firm

A former fugitive from California was sentenced Friday to three years in federal prison for trying to scam $1 million from a Garden City law firm after he escaped from prison while serving a sentence for committing the same scam.

Richard Lagerveld had pleaded guilty to mail and wire fraud charges in 2012 at Central Islip federal court for the second set of crimes.

Prosecutors said the 57-year-old law school graduate initially devised a scheme to defraud two Long Island law firms out of more than $9 million by submitting claims for non-existent plaintiffs to class action lawsuit settlement administrators.

He was arrested for that scam in 2004 at a San Diego homeless shelter and authorities seized $8.5 million from his accounts before he was sentenced to 10 years in prison. He then escaped in ’09 while traveling unescorted on a bus from one prison to another as part of a program for low-risk inmates, The Associated Press reported.  

He was apprehended two years later and pleaded guilty to committing the same scam while he was on the run. The escape charge was dropped in exchange for his plea.

Ex-NCPD Commander Surrenders to Jail in Cover-up Case

William Flanagan
Former Second Deputy Nassau Police Commissioner William Flanagan, convicted of conspiring to cover up a burglary, faced a press swarm after his arrest in March 2012. (Photo by Rashed Mian/Long Island Press)

A former Nassau County police commander surrendered Thursday morning to county jail to begin serving his 60-day sentence after he was convicted of helping cover up a burglary, officials told the Press.

William Flanagan, the ex-second deputy Nassau County police commissioner, recently lost an appeal of his conviction before the New York State Court of Appeals, although his attorney had said Flanagan was filing a motion to re-argue their case.

Court officials and law enforcement sources said Flanagan surrendered to Nassau County jail in East Meadow. Sources said he is expected to serve his time at Suffolk County jail in Riverhead. His attorney did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

“William Flanagan’s imperious behavior brought scandal to his department and this county,” Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas said. “Today, nearly eight years after his crime, William Flanagan is finally serving his sentence for official misconduct and conspiracy… No one – including William Flanagan – is above the law.”

A Nassau County jury convicted Flanagan of conspiracy and official misconduct following a month-long trial in 2013. He was acquitted of receiving reward for official misconduct, a felony. Two weeks ago, the state’s highest court affirmed a previous appeals court ruling upholding the conviction.

Prosecutors said Flanagan helped quash a burglary committed by Zachary Parker, the son of his friend, Gary Parker, who volunteered for and donated to the nonprofit Nassau County Police Foundation. Zachary, who was a Nassau police Ambulance Bureau intern at the time, had stolen thousands of dollars worth of electronics from his alma mater, John F. Kennedy High School, shortly before his 2009 graduation, authorities have said.

Parker wasn’t arrested for the theft despite school officials repeatedly insisting that they wanted to press charges. The theft and cover-up were the subject of a 2011 Press expose, which sparked an investigation by the Nassau County District Attorney’s Office.

Parker was subsequently convicted of burglary, sentenced to prison after violating his probation, and has since been released.

Flanagan was among three former police officials charged in the cover-up. John Hunter, the retired Deputy Chief of Patrol, and Det. Sgt. Alan Sharpe both pleaded guilty to misconduct and were sentenced to probation in connection with the case. They were spared jail time in exchange for their pleas.

Judge Mark Cohen—a Suffolk judge brought in after two Nassau judges recused themselves from the case—had sentenced Flanagan to 60 days in jail, but execution of that term had been repeatedly stayed pending the appeal. Cohen also sentenced Flanagan to five months of probation.

Moriches Crash Leaves Driver Dead

(Photo credit: Tony Webster/Wikimedia Commons)

A 31-year-old Mastic Beach man was killed when he crashed his SUV in Moriches early Thursday morning.

Suffolk County police said Daniel Krehl was driving a Saturn Vue eastbound on Montauk Highway when his vehicle struck the rear of a tractor trailer that was parked with its hazard lights near the corner of Fanning Landing Road at 2:37 a.m.

The victim was pronounced dead at the scene.

Seventh Squad detectives impounded the Saturn, are continuing the investigation and ask anyone with information on the crash to call them at 631-852-8752.

Roosevelt Man Admits to Fatal DWI Crash That Killed Girlfriend

Horace Cummings
Horace Cummings

A Roosevelt man admitted Wednesday to driving while drunk and high on drugs when he crashed his car head-on into another vehicle, killing his girlfriend on her 25th birthday in 2015.

Horace Cummings, 34, pleaded guilty at Nassau County court to second-degree manslaughter, reckless endangerment and driving while ability impaired by combined influence of alcohol and drugs.

“The terrible ironies in this crash do not obscure the fact that Horace Cummings was driving while impaired by alcohol and drugs,” Nassau County District Attorney Madeline Singas said.

Prosecutors said Cummings was driving a Nissan Altima westbound on Front Street in Hempstead when he crossed into the opposite lane of traffic and collided with an eastbound vehicle at 2:40 a.m. on Nov. 21, 2015.

His girlfriend, Diamond Hawkins, who was killed in the collision, was given the Altima as a birthday gift. Cummings suffered non-life-threatening injuries and the other driver was not hurt.

Cummings faces up to 15 years in prison when he is sentenced April 6 by Judge Robert McDonald. He has been held at Nassau County jail since his bail was set at $250,000 cash or $500,000 bond.

Central Islip Armed Home Invasion Probed

Suffolk County police are investigating an armed home invasion in Central Islip last week, authorities said.

A man entered an East Halley Lane home, pointed a knife at a victim inside and stole money and a cell phone before the assailant fled the scene at 1:15 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 16, police said.

There were no reported injuries. No arrests were made or description of the suspect was available. Detectives are continuing the investigation.

Westbury Crash Leaves Woman Dead

police
Morguefile photo

A 51-year-old woman was killed when a car crossed into the opposite lane of traffic and crashed head-on into her SUV in her hometown of Westbury on Presidents’ Day.

Nassau County police said a 22-year-old man was driving his BMW sedan northbound on Salisbury Park Drive when he crashed into a southbound BMW SUV driven by Maria Duarte near the corner of St. Paul’s Street at 10:35 p.m. Monday.

Duarte was taken to a local hospital, where she was pronounced dead. The man was hospitalized in serious condition.

Homicide Squad detectives impounded the vehicles for safety checks and are continuing the investigation.

3rd Suspect Charged With Hempstead Murder

Hempstead stabbing murder

A third suspect has been arrested for his role in the stabbing death of a 39-year-old man in Hempstead last year, Nassau County police said.

Daniel Abrego Davila, 31, of the Bronx, was charged with second-degree murder.

Homicide Squad detectives said Davila was one of three assailants that attacked Rolando Cruz, of Freeport, following an argument in front of El Nuevo bar on Fulton Avenue in the early morning hours of Sunday, April 10, 2016. The victim was taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Police arrested 34-year-old William Lopez of Hempstead in September and 29-year-old Jorge Poshon of Freeport last month. Both men were charged with murder and ordered held without bail. They are both due back in court next month.

Davila will be arraigned Monday at First District Court in Hempstead.

Dix Hills Man Killed in Motorcycle Crash

(Photo credit: Tony Webster/Wikimedia Commons)

Port Jefferson Woman Killed in Crash

(Photo credit: Tony Webster/Wikimedia Commons)

A 73-year-old Port Jefferson woman was killed when the vehicle her husband was driving was involved in a crash in Rocky Point on Saturday afternoon.

Suffolk County police said Lucio Costanzo, also 73, was driving a Subaru westbound on Route 25A when he crossed into the opposite lane of traffic and struck an eastbound Jeep at the corner of Fairway Drive at 12:20 p.m.

Lucio was airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital in serious condition. His wife, Stephanie Costanzo, who was a passenger in the vehicle, was taken to John T. Mather Hospital in Port Jefferson, where she was pronounced dead. The other driver and his 16-year-old son were treated for non-life-threatening injuries.

Seventh Squad detectives impounded the vehicles, are continuing the investigation and ask anyone with information on this crash to call them at 631-852-8752.

Roslyn Heights Pedestrian Fatally Hit by SUV

police
Morguefile photo

An 82-year-old man was fatally hit by an SUV in Roslyn Heights on Saturday evening.

Nassau County police said  Sion Bakhshi, of Roslyn, was crossing Mineola Avenue when he was struck by a northbound GMC Acadia near the corner of of Hillside Avenue at 7:22 p.m.

The victim was taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead. The driver was not injured.

Homicide Squad detectives found criminality and deemed the crash and accident.