Nicholas Caracappa

Suffolk County Legislator-elect Nicholas Caracappa of Selden was arrested Tuesday for alleged domestic violence less than a month before he is scheduled to be sworn into office, Suffolk County police said.

Officers responded to the 53-year-old’s Hawkins Road home, where he was charged with first-degree criminal contempt, a felony, and a misdemeanor count of criminal obstruction of breathing related to a domestic incident, police said. Judge James Saladino released Caracappa without bail following his initial appearance at First District Court in Central Islip.

“If you think you are going to get 50 percent and give it to a stupid douchebag, I will kill you first,” Caracappa told the victim, according to court documents that authorities filed in the case. Authorities said he also “grabbed and pushed the victim…up against a wall and squeezed her neck and prevented her from breathing.”

Caracappa was elected in a November special election to fill the year left on the term of the late Legislator Tom Muratore, who represented Suffolk’s centrally located fourth district until he died in September. The Conservative Party member is expected to caucus with the legislature’s Republican minority.

Caracappa previously worked for the Suffolk County Water Authority for more than 34 years, was president of Local 393 Utility Workers union, and served on the Middle Country School Board. The district seat he won was previously represented by his mother, Rose Caracappa, whose name adorns the legislative chamber where lawmakers hold their meetings in Hauppauge.

Two Suffolk legislators also are facing criminal charges.

Suffolk Legislator Dr. William Spencer (D-Centerport) pleaded not guilty to drug charges in October after authorities said he tried to trade drugs for sexual favors from an undercover police officer posing as a sex worker. 

And Suffolk Legislator Rudy Sunderman (R-Mastic) was arrested in 2019 on perjury charges resulting from a county ethics law investigation, Suffolk prosecutors have said. Sunderman also pleaded not guilty. Both Sunderman and Spencer remain sitting lawmakers while their cases are pending.

Caracappa is due back in court on Jan. 21. He is scheduled to be sworn in on Jan. 4. His attorney could not be reached for comment.
 
“The arrest of and the allegations against Legislator-elect Nicholas Caracappa are very serious,” Suffolk County Legislature Presiding Officer Rob Calarco (D-Patchogue) said. “I do not know the specifics of the case and cannot comment further. He was not to be sworn in until January, but these events do not undo the election. He has a right to his day in court. At this time my prayers are with his family.”
 
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