Five men were arrested last month for allegedly impersonating police and tying up victims during seven armed home invasions over a year-long span on eastern Long Island, Suffolk County prosecutors said Wednesday.
The suspects include three LI men and two upstate New York residents, who were all indicted on charges of conspiracy with various members of the group charged with burglary, robbery, criminal impersonation and other counts.
“This crew donned business suits and wore gold fake police badges around their necks and identified themselves as detectives to the occupants of the targeted houses,” Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota said. “Typically, they would get inside, brandish handguns and then restrain all occupants of the house with zip ties or duct tape as they ransacked the premises. The perpetrators often told the victims that they were being restrained “‘for their protection.’”
Prosecutors said the quintet stole cash and jewelry from homes in Wyandanch, North Bay Shore, North Babylon, Deer Park, Mastic and two in Bay Shore. Investigators used wiretaps to intercept cell phone conversations between to catch the suspects, who were arrested on March 26, authorities said.
The suspects were identified as Michael Stevens, of Valley Stream, Ramon Rodriguez, of Queens, Jonte Hatcher, of Newburgh—all three of whom are 31—Demetrius Williams, 27, of Wyandanch, and Mark Powers, 23, of Poughkeepsie.
They will be arraigned Wednesday before Judge Richard Ambro at Suffolk County court in Riverhead.