Rashed Mian

Rashed Mian has been covering local news for the Long Island Press since 2011. He graduated from Hofstra University in 2010 where he studied print journalism. Rashed, the staff's multimedia reporter, covers daily news for the web, shoots/edits feature videos and writes about civil liberties. He loves Afghan food and sports. Rashed is also a caffeine freak. Email: rmian@longislandpress.com. Twitter: rashedmian

Cuomo: LIRR Third Track Wouldn’t Impact Homes

Long Island Rail Road (Photo by MTA).

Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Tuesday announced that a controversial Long Island Rail Road expansion project is no longer predicated on the agency’s acquiring homes in the long-sought third track’s path.

The LIRR’s reversal came on the same day Cuomo joined the Long Island Association for an event announcing the formation of a broad coalition called “Right Track for Long Island” that is committed to seeing the project move forward.

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“You have one of the worst commutes in the country on Long Island, literally one of the worst in terms of hours and time,” said Cuomo, adding that the project would alleviate some of the railroad’s woes.

To limit congestion, the LIRR has envisioned a 9.8-mile-long third track between Floral Park and Hicksville that would run along the current right of way.

The controversial $1.5 billion expansion once hinged on the railroad acquiring at least 20 residential properties along the route, but that is no longer on the table, Cuomo said.

The Right Track for Long Island Coalition includes a number of leading business organizations, labor unions, research institutions, environmental groups such as Citizens Campaign for the Environment and the commuter advocacy group, Long Island Railroad Commuter Council.

The extension is part of a much more ambitious attempt to improve the railroad’s infrastructure. It also includes a review of seven of the busiest grade crossings in the region in order to eliminate potential collisions between trains and vehicles stuck at the crossings.

Bill Corbett Sr., a Floral Park resident and staunch opponent of the proposal, said construction of a third track would create considerable disruptions for people living in the affected communities.

“We’re really upset with the governor,” Corbett said, adding that construction will be “very unpleasant for a lot of people.”

“The thought that this can be done without intruding on private property is absurd,” he added.

But proponents of the project believe the supposed benefits are hard to ignore.

“One track is always out; it seems like,” Cuomo said, adding that the third track would serve as a redundancy in the event another track goes off line.

LIRR Third Track
Map of the Long Island Rail Road Expansion Project. (Courtesy: Right Track for Long Island)

The governor argued that the LIRR’s current two-track system limits how it can perform, especially during peak times, when the railroad has no choice but to run trains in a single direction between Floral Park and Hicksville. Adding a third track would uncork the bottleneck and reduce delays, according to the governor’s proposal.

Former Greenport Mayor Dave Kapell, co-chair of the Right Track for Long Island coalition, said the railroad is long overdue for a major expansion.

Begun in 1844, the original premise of the railroad was to create a connection between New York City and Boston, Kapell said, adding that the system today is running on the same two tracks built when Long Island’s population was only 50,000.

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The dual-track system is a hindrance to Long Island’s economic expansion, Kapell said.

The proposal to expand the LIRR “is both exciting and critically needed for our communities,” he added.

A Rauch Foundation study published in 2014, titled “The Economic and Fiscal Impacts of the LIRR Third Track,” noted that the construction of a third track would create 14,000 jobs and generate $40 million in new sales tax revenue, $103 million in property tax gains and $5.6 billion in Gross Regional Product by 2035.

But opposition remains on track.

More than 100 local organizations and elected officials are opposed to the project, plus mayors of each village on the route that will potentially be impacted by the construction, Corbett said.

“There’s been no demonstrated need for a third track,” he said. “We’ve proven that the reverse commute does not exist; the trains are now coming out half-full.

“We don’t oppose the elimination of grade crossings,” he said. “We think that’s a good idea as long as it’s done with the cooperation of the individual communities and meets their needs.”

Those looking toward the future say the expansion is critical to attracting young people to the Island.

The railroad’s current two-rail system “prevents the transit-oriented economic and community development that the Coalition believes is essential if Long Island is to be competitive in a 21st-century economy and attractive to the young people we want to live and work here,” the Right Track for Long Island coalition wrote on its website, which was also launched on Tuesday.

Schumer Wants Federal Funds for Proposed Brewery

One of the local craft beer industry’s biggest cheerleaders, U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer, is pushing for federal funds to help transform a dilapidated building in Copiague into the state’s first ever craft beer incubator.

The New York Democrat Monday pledged to help the Town of Babylon obtain $1 million from the U.S. Economic Development Administration to help pay for the estimated $12 million project.

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Schumer said the so-called Babylon Brewery Incubator meets the criteria for federal funding, and it would be a “game changer” for Long Island and New York State.

“This could be the Mecca of beer brewing in all of New York State,” proclaimed the senator at a press conference held outside the building, which was once home to a wallpaper manufacturing company and a defense contractor before that.

Transforming the one-acre site into a beer incubator is a no-brainer given the craft beer industry’s meteoric rise over the last several years, Schumer explained. Long Island now boasts more than a dozen craft breweries, and the robust industry has shown no sign of tapering off.

Town officials said the proposed facility would house a 4,000-square-foot tasting room where artisan beer lovers could sample brews concocted by microbrewers who would be tenants there. The beers would be made in the facility using on-site equipment essential to the beer-making process, like fomenters.

Schumer and others believe a facility like this would give home brewers the space and the machinery they need to create their product and allow them to “mix and mingle” with like-minded beer connoisseurs.

The Copiague site was built in 1951. It has been abandoned for three decades, officials said. (Rashed Mian/Long Island Press)
The Copiague site was built in 1951. It has been abandoned for three decades, officials said. (Rashed Mian/Long Island Press)

“Hundreds of Long Islanders who brew in their garages or make-shift facilities would have a chance to hone and perfect their recipes in a state-of-the-art commercial space,” Schumer said.

The property at 1305 South Strong Avenue would need more than a face-lift. The building has been abandoned for about three decades, according to Babylon Town Industrial Development Agency’s chief executive officer, Matthew McDonough. As a result, the building is tagged with graffiti, its windows are broken, and the roof has partially collapsed, rattling dangerously on windy days. Apparently, local kids have turned the interior into a skate park littered with empty beer cans and broken glass. The local fire department has reportedly complained about bonfires being set inside the building, prompting firefighters to respond on several occasions.

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The Babylon IDA said that the site had more than $900,000 owed in back taxes, and that New York Department of Environmental Conservation had had to spend $750,000 in remediation costs, which included the disposal of 20 tons of contaminated waste from a cesspool.

According to the DEC, “significant contamination was removed,” thus no further remedial action plan is proposed for the site. The property had been listed in the State Registry of Inactive Hazardous Waste Sites, but “the site no longer poses a threat to human health or the environment,” the DEC concluded in a report published in February.

The property was originally developed in 1951 by Dayton T Brown Co., a defense contractor currently based in Bohemia.

Assuming the Babylon IDA receives the funding it needs, local officials believe the beer incubator could eventually create about 35 to 50 full-time positions. Once the Town acquires the property, it plans to send out a Request for Proposals (RFP) for a site manager.

Schumer said New York’s craft beer industry currently supports 60,000 jobs and brings in $5.3 billion in economic activity. The incubator will bolster job growth by giving Long Island microbrewers the opportunity to perfect their product before they open their own operations, he added.

The senator cited as a success story the Patchogue-based Blue Point Brewery, which began as a home-brewing operation before becoming the largest craft brewery on the Island. Blue Point was sold to international beer conglomerate Anheuser-Busch InBev in 2014 for an estimated $24 million.

Fire Kills Woman, 90, in Sayville

A fire killed a 90-year-old woman inside her unit at a retirement community in Sayville early Sunday morning, Suffolk County police said.

After the fire was extinguished, first responders found Elizabeth Sclafani’s body inside her home, police said. Sclafani was already dead by the time they reached her, police said.

The 4 a.m. fire destroyed a neighboring residence, which was vacant at the time, and damaged another unit, police said.

Authorities said that half a dozen fire departments responded to battle the blaze. A Sayville firefighter was hospitalized for minor injuries, police said.

After a preliminary investigation, detectives believe the origin of the fire was non-criminal, police said.

Rocky Point Man, 60, Killed in East Shoreham Crash

A 60-year-old Rocky Point man was killed in a single-car crash in East Shoreham Sunday night, Suffolk County police said.

The victim, Joseph Labate, apparently lost control of his Isuzu Rodeo on Rt. 25A and it struck a utility pole near Miller Avenue at 6 p.m., police said.

Labate was pronounced dead at John T. Mather Memorial Hospital in Port Jefferson Station, police reported.

The Isuzu was impounded for a safety check and the investigation is continuing, police said.

Long Island Pols Launch Campaign For New York Paid Family Leave

Paid Family Leave New York State

Assemblywoman Michaelle Solages (D-Elmont) was cradling her child at a podium Friday during an event advocating for paid family leave in New York State when she began to decry “bare bones” relief provided under federal law.

As if right on cue, her son Nicholas let out what many in the room interpreted as a disgruntled groan—prompting the contingent at Planned Parenthood of Nassau County to burst into laughter.

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Like his mother, Nicholas apparently had his mind made up on the issue.

“I can’t imagine anyone who would have to go back to work after one week because they had to choose between their family and a paycheck,” Solages, the proud new mother, said.

Solages and about a dozen other elected officials gathered Friday for the official launch of their campaign, which calls on the New York State Legislature to act on the issue, this session. Those supporting the measure aren’t alone—Gov. Andrew Cuomo has also made paid family leave a priority of his 2016 agenda, along with a $15 minimum wage.

The launch attracted Democrats representing local municipalities, the Nassau County Legislature, and the New York State Assembly. Collectively, they are seeking 12 weeks of paid leave for workers, which would amount to two-thirds of an individual’s salary. The contingent did not offer specifics on how the program would be funded, but Cuomo has said his plan would be paid for through deductions from workers’ paychecks of 70 cents, followed by a $1.47 deduction by 2021.

“The idea of going back to work after a week is stunning,” said Assemblyman Todd Kaminsky, the Long Beach Democrat who is running for disgraced ex-Senator Dean Skelos’ vacant seat.

His colleague in the Assembly, Charles Lavine (D-Glen Cove), compared New York’s lack of funding for absent workers to that of California, which he praised for being hospitable to workers with familial obligations.

Lavine and his wife spent most of January in Oakland, Calif., he said, as they awaited the birth of their grandchild, and he couldn’t help but notice the disparity.

“California’s system is much more advanced in terms of protecting its citizens than is our system in the state of New York,” said Lavine, adding that paid family leave is a “human right.”

“Luck shouldn’t determine who gets to look out for their family members who are in need,” he added.

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Hempstead Town Councilwoman Dorothy Goosby said those most in need of assistance are low-income workers who can’t afford to abstain from their job for a long period of time.

“We need that desperately,” she said of paid family leave.

According to federal statistics, the percentage of U.S. private sector workers who have access to paid family leave is nominal: only 12 percent.

The United States has the oft-lampooned distinction of being only one of three nations in the world that doesn’t offer paid family leave, along with Papua New Guinea and Suriname.

Joann Smith, CEO and President of Nassau County Planned Parenthood, said five of her workers are currently pregnant. As of now, they’d have to use a combination of sick leave and vacation time to ensure steady paychecks while caring for their newborns.

“New York has always been a leader in healthcare,” Smith said. “We need to continue this.”

Advocates also mentioned how unforeseen circumstances, such as health issues, could increase the pressure on parents to stay at home to care for children, or other family members.

It was a decade ago that Lorena Bowie, outreach coordinator for the family advocacy nonprofit Every Child Matters, had to quit her job at another nonprofit to care for her daughter, who was stricken with Vesicoureteral reflux, which affects the kidney.

Doctor visits led to surgery, followed by multiple 15-day stints at the hospital. Bowie remained by her daughter’s side each time she was admitted, because, as she said, “I was nursing, so there was nobody else to be able to feed my child.”

“As a new mom, I had no other choice but to take off from work,” Bowie said.

As her attention diverted to her sick daughter, bills began piling up. Had their been resources offered to her back then, financial trouble would’ve been the least of her worries, she noted. With her daughter now healthy, Bowie has been able to concentrate her efforts on ensuring other women get the help they need.

“It’s very important for us as mothers to be there for our children,” she said.

Cops: Coram Man, 46, Dies in Southern State Crash

A 46-year-old Coram man was killed early Friday morning in a single-car crash on the Southern State Parkway, New York State police said.

The victim, Mario Vitagliano, was driving a 2000 Infiniti eastbound on the Southern State Parkway when he lost control and crashed into the center median near exit 43 before slamming into several trees, police said. The crash occurred at approximately 2 a.m., police said.

Vitagliano was transported to Southside Hospital in Bay Shore, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

Medford Man who Kidnapped Ex-Girlfriend Arrested in Georgia, Cops Say

A Medford man who allegedly broke into his ex-girlfriend’s home and abducted her early Wednesday morning was arrested later in the day in Georgia, Suffolk County police said.

Camden County Sheriff officers apprehended Christopher Ryan, 23, at 10:25 p.m. after he made the 900-plus mile drive south, police said.

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Suffolk police said Ryan will be extradited back to the county at a later date to face burglary, robbery and kidnapping charges.

Ryan’s long trip south began at 5 a.m., police said, when he allegedly broke into his ex-girlfriend’s Oakdale home and forced her into her 2014 Mercedes Benz. The woman, who was not identified, was able to flee after Ryan momentarily stopped the car in Ozone Park, Queens, police said.

The woman, who is 46 years old, ran out of the car and was able to get help and call 911, a police spokeswoman said.

The victim suffered minor injuries, police said.

Group Calls for Dismantling of Outdated Youth Prisons


nti-youth incarceration advocates are calling for a systematic dismantling of all juvenile detention facilities in the United States, starting with 80 locations frequently flagged for prisoner abuse and overreliance on solitary confinement.

The report by Youth First Initiative, released Thursday, examines the disproportionate incarceration of African Americans across the country at antiquated state-operated juvenile detention complexes. The entire system, advocates say, is woefully inadequate and wastes billions of dollars each year in taxpayer money.

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The group found that about 54,000 youths are incarcerated each day across the US, with black youth five times more likely than whites to be incarcerated, and they’re often put in harsh conditions where physical and sexual violence is a common occurrence. At the same time, the group noted, there appears to be broad support for reinvesting in community-based programs through financial incentives for states and local governments to help pay for alternatives to youth incarceration.

“Even though youth incarceration has decreased in the last decade, states are still relying on youth prisons, a relic of an 1820’s justice system, that is harmful, racially biased and obsolete,” Liz Ryan, CEO of Youth First, said in a press release announcing the group’s findings.

Youth First’s call for a complete overhaul of the juvenile justice system comes as Americans have expressed broad support for criminal justice reform, including bolstering prisoner reentry programs and reducing the length of mandatory minimum sentences.  On the recommendation of the Department of Justice, the Obama administration in January went ahead and banned the Bureau of Prisons from placing juvenile prisoners in solitary confinement. Here in New York State, Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, signed an executive order last December that would remove teens 17 and younger from adult prisons and place in youth facilities.

Reforming the juvenile justice system is vital because “we can’t leave children behind,” Mishi Faruqee, national field director for Youth First Initiative, told the Press in a phone interview.

Faruqee, who has been studying youth incarceration for two decades, said New York spends more than any other state on detaining children, about $350,000 per individual. Nationwide, the annual amount it costs to house minors convicted of various degrees of crimes is $5 billion.

Meanwhile, the percentage of youth who leave juvenile facilities only to get rearrested remains stunningly high, she said. In some states, recidivism rates run as high as 75 percent. One study conducted over a 10-year period found recidivism rates in New York State to be “astronomical,” Faruqee noted, with 91 percent of former incarcerated youth being re-convicted within a decade after their initial release.

Redirecting funds from youth prisons to community-based rehabilitation programs would be a better way of keeping kids out of trouble, Faruqee said.

“There are alternatives that are much more effective,” Faruqee explained, while lamenting that programs that provide youth offenders and their families the support and services they need are under-resourced.

Recent studies bolster Faruqee’s point. A report published by Youth Advocate Programs, Policy & Advocacy Center in 2014 noted, “Systems cannot achieve de-incarceration goals unless they build continuums of community-based programs to serve all youth, especially those with the highest need.” The study, dubbed “Safely Home,” cited a series of briefs from the John Jay College of Criminal Justice Research and Evaluation Center in Manhattan that found that of the more than 3,500 “high-risk youth living at home and supported by an intensive community-based program,” 86 percent remained arrest free.

Advocates contend that alternative to incarceration programs are far more effective than throwing youth in juvenile prisons, but funding remains elusive.

“We can’t actually free up money for community based alternatives unless the facilities are closed,” Faruqee said.

As part of its campaign to change the way the juvenile justice system operates, Youth First on Thursday published what it calls the “first-of-its-kind” interactive graph and mapping tool, which provides the locations of youth prisons across America. Users can select individual states on the map and find the exact location of some of the largest and oldest facilities in the country. Three facilities are in upstate New York, none are on Long Island. The youth prisons on the map represent those established more than a century ago or that have more than a 100 beds.

The report lists many of the ways in which these institutions resemble adults prisons, “including large bed capacity (over 30-beds); correctional staff whose main role is to count and cuff youth; locked rooms, cells or units; razor wire fences; and practices similar to those used in adult prisons, including use of chemical restraints such as pepper spray; mechanical restraints such as leg irons, handcuffs, wrap restraints; and hog-tying; use of isolation and solitary confinement; and documented instances of physical and sexual violence, physical and verbal abuse, and neglect such as underfeeding, removal of sanitary napkins, and toiletry items.”

The project also documents how youth incarceration disproportionately affects young African Americans. In New York State, 51 percent of the youth prison population is black, despite African Americans only making up 17 percent of the overall population in the state. Whites, who make up 51 percent of the state’s population, represent 26 percent of the youth prison community, followed by Latinos at 19 percent.

The “data shows that youth of color are much more likely to be incarcerated despite the fact that they commit roughly the same level of juvenile crime as white youth,” the report found.

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Faruqee said that addressing the racial disparity would require serious reform on multiple levels. It’s partly a function of “real bias within the system,” she said, noting that blacks are treated “more harshly” at each stage of the criminal justice process, even if they’re charged with the same crimes as their white cohorts.

The failures do not fall on the criminal justice system alone. Predominantly black neighborhoods suffer from a lack of resources, Faruqee said. That’s why so much of First Youth’s initiative calls on governors to reinvest the exorbitant amount of money being funneled into youth prisons into the “communities where young people come from,” Faruqee explained.

While Youth First is hoping for youth prisons become a thing of the past, Faruqee said some of the larger municipalities in New York State have taken strides to address youth incarceration.

One example was New York City, which has convinced state officials to pass legislation that would keep youth offenders in the city’s custody, instead of transferring them to upstate facilities where they’d be miles away from their families. The city also joined other municipalities by creating community-based alternatives to prison, giving judges the option of confining kids to their families’ care while they receive much-needed service.

But the state system has not been without intense scrutiny.

In August 2009, the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division released the findings of a lengthy investigation of four facilities where it found the staff had consistently used excessive force on prisoners, and subsequent investigations were insufficient.

“We can’t actually free up money for community based alternatives unless the facilities are closed.”

Prisoners were reprimanded for the most innocuous of infractions, including “sneaking an extra cookie to initiating a fist fight.”

“This one-size-fits-all control approach has not surprisingly led to an alarming number of serious injuries to youth, including concussions, broken or knocked-out teeth, and spiral fractures,” the feds wrote to then Gov. David Patterson.

Federal investigators also determined that staff used force to “control youth’s behavior,” invariably escalating violent situations.

But since 2007, when the federal investigation commenced, New York has closed 21 facilities, Faruqee said, and community-based programs are more abundant.

“I think the takeaway is that there really is a lot of momentum for completely transforming juvenile justice in the United States,” Faruqee said.

She pointed to the recent decisions by governors in Connecticut, Illinois and Virgina to close outdated juvenile facilities in their respective states.

“I think things have really shifted,” Faruqee said. “Now we have this real opportunity to implement what we know works for young people.”

West Babylon Man Charged in Wife’s Death

A 31-year-old West Babylon man was arrested Wednesday for allegedly killing his wife inside their home last month, Suffolk County police said.

Kerwyn Jaggernauth, who has been hospitalized since his wife’s death on Feb. 20, was charged with second-degree murder.

Police were called to the couple’s house at 2:25 p.m. and discovered 32-year-old Sonja Williams dead and Jaggernauth with serious injuries.

Williams was pronounced dead at the scene by the Suffolk County Medical Examiner’s office, police said.

Jaggernauth has improved from critical to serious condition.

Jaggernauth will be arraigned at a later date, police said.

Mangano Sexting Scandal A ‘Hoax,’ NCPD Says

Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano
Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano

An investigation into an alleged sexting scandal by Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano, which threatened to upend his political career, found no evidence that he sent explicit messages to women, a top-ranking Nassau police official said Thursday.

“They did not sext each other,” Det. Sgt. Patrick Ryder, commanding officer of Asset Forfeiture and Intelligence unit, told reporters during a news conference Thursday at the department’s police academy in Massapequa Park. Ryder was referring to Mangano and Karin Caro, founder of the public relations firm Blue Chip Marketing, who was the person identified as allegedly being on the receiving end of Mangano’s provocative messages.

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One alleged sext, in which someone identified as “Ed M” discusses sexual acts, was forged and never sent or received by either Mangano or Caro, Ryder said. An animated Ryder said there was no proof Mangano ever sent the message, despite it being linked to his phone number. A purported Tweet from Caro’s Twitter account also appears to be a fake, investigators found.

The sexting scandal, which Mangano adamantly denied any involvement in, emerged on Feb. 13 during an explosive report by CBS News.

“I want you to (blank) my brains out even if it’s in my car again,” was one of the messages allegedly sent by Mangano, according to CBS News.

Mangano suggested to CBS News that he was a victim of a hack and told the Press on Valentine’s Day that the whole scandal is “totally fabricated.”

After Mangano became aware of the supposed sexts, he filed a verbal complaint with Nassau County police.

In response to Nassau police’s investigation, Mangano released a statement reiterating that he was victimized.

“As I stated from the moment this matter was brought to my attention, my family and I are the victims of a hoax perpetuated by a deranged individual,” Mangano said.

“I can only hope that the media will report the truth in the same manner as they reported the outrageous lies against me and the other victim,” he added. “Now, I respectfully ask that you leave my family and me alone on this matter.”

The department’s investigation commenced almost immediately, with Ryder personally overseeing the probe. During Thursday’s press conference, Ryder took the unusual step of laying out the entire investigation from start to finish, including the time and date of interviews with those involved, and documenting how the department came to the conclusion that the whole scandal was a hoax.

At one point Ryder, who took issue with suggestions that the department would cover up the scandal for Mangano’s benefit, said the investigation was done independent of the county executive’s office and the office of acting Police Commissioner Thomas Krumpter, Mangano’s pick to head the department.

“When they came to my office I was handed this bag of crap,” Ryder said. “Look around, there’s no one standing behind me. This investigation was done independently.”

“I was brought up to the tell the truth,” he added, “I am telling you the truth with the evidence in front of me. I would never embarrass my family, I would never embarrass my office…my job is to follow the evidence, I took the evidence and I followed it.

“As far as I’m concerned,” he continued, “this sexting case is closed.”

Ryder did say, however, that Mangano was never hacked. Citing the recent high-profile case between the FBI and Apple regarding the phone belonging to one of the San Bernardino, Calif. shooters, Ryder said it’s impossible for anyone to hack an iPhone without the password or Apple ID.

The investigation included analysis of both Mangano and Caro’s phones, which turned up no evidence that the pair had communicated. The police also used license plate reader technology and determined that neither Mangano nor Caro’s vehicles were ever in the same location at once, Ryder said. An examination of deleted messages—which the department has the ability to obtain and analyze—also did not reveal any relationship between Mangano and Caro.

Mangano sexting scandal
A slide showing a sexting message allegedly sent by Nassau County Executive Ed Mangano. Nassau police said it’s a fake message. (Rashed Mian/Long Island Press)

One of the more racier messages purportedly sent by Mangano to Caro appears to be a forged document, made to look like a screenshot of an actual text exchange, investigators found. Ryder said he Googled the first nine words in the message and it took him to a website that mirrors the message. Also, an alleged Tweet from Caro’s account that suggests a vindictive motive, almost verbatim matches a quote from a news article regarding a divorce between Hollywood socialites, Ryder said.

“This is a document that could have been created by a kid or somebody that has an agenda,” Ryder said of the text. “There is no number from Mr. Mangano that ties him to the document.”

“[Caro] overwhelmingly denies ever seeing it,” Ryder added. “She denies ever having Ed Mangano’s cell phone, she denies ever personally contacting Ed Mangano through any electronic communication.” However, Caro has done business with the county before and received two contracts from Nassau in 2013 and 2014 to promote events.

Ryder said both Mangano and Caro cooperated with the investigation and gave detectives permission to personally sift through their devices.

Ryder noted that he personally interviewed Mangano and threatened to arrest the county executive himself if evidence later turned up revealing he was lying.

Mangano’s response: “I was not involved with that woman.”

The alleged sexting scandal included messages sent to other women, but Caro was the only one publicly identified.