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Police: Orient farmer charged with rape, criminal sex act

08/04/2016 5:41 PM |

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An Orient farmer was arrested last Thursday on felony charges of rape and criminal sex act, New York State police announced. 

Steven Mezynieski, 44, is accused of “having sexual relations with a female victim over the course of about three years,” according to a police press release. The alleged acts started when the victim was under the age of consent, state police said.

Mr. Mezynieski, who owns Driftwood Farms in Orient, was charged with first-degree rape and first-degree criminal sex act. He was arraigned in Southold Town Justice Court and released on $25,000 bail last Thursday, police said.

The criminal sex act charge dates back to summer 2012, according to the criminal complaint filed against Mr. Mezynieski, and relates to an incident in which he allegedly restrained a 16-year-old girl with rope and performed a sex act on her without her consent. Two summers later, he pushed the same alleged victim, who was then 18, onto a bed and had sex with her as she attempted to push him off, according to the complaint detailing the rape charge. Both incidents occurred at Mr. Mezynieski’s farm in Orient, according to the documents.

Mr. Mezynieski’s attorney, Ed Burke Jr. of Sag Harbor, said Friday that his client “vigorously entered a plea of not guilty to the two counts he was charged with.”

“He looks forward to addressing these matters in the appropriate court and looks forward to clearing his good name,” Mr. Burke said.

The investigation was conducted by members of the State Police Troop L Major Crimes Unit. State troopers have asked any other possible victims to contact them at 631-56-3300. All calls will remain confidential.

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Editor’s Note: This story was updated to reflect the print version that ran in the Aug. 11 Suffolk Times.

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