10/24/14 8:00am
10/24/2014 8:00 AM
Southold shooting suspects (from left) Walter Vasquez, 17, of Greenport;  Pedro Emilio Santamaria, 31, of Greenport; and Jeremias Nathaniel Recinos Torres, 19, of Aquebogue are escorted by corrections officers into Southold Town Court Friday morning. The three were arraigned in Suffolk County court Wednesday. (Credit: Paul Squire, file)

Southold shooting suspects (from left) Walter Vasquez, 17, of Greenport; Pedro Emilio Santamaria, 31, of Greenport; and Jeremias Nathaniel Recinos Torres, 19, of Aquebogue are escorted by corrections officers into Southold Town Court Friday morning. The three were arraigned in Suffolk County court Wednesday. (Credit: Paul Squire, file)

Last Tuesday’s shooting in Southold, in which four alleged members of MS-13 attacked two men from a rival gang with guns and a machete, has brought attention to the growing problem of gangs on the East End.

In Riverhead, Riverside and Flanders, gang violence has long been an issue. Town, police and community leaders say they are working together in an attempt to attack the root of the problem.

In Southold Town, gangs are more prevalent than in the past, as changing demographics have brought Latin groups like MS-13 and 18th Street to the East End.  (more…)

08/26/14 6:32pm
08/26/2014 6:32 PM
Shawn McAvoy mug shot (Credit: Riverhead police department)

Shawn McAvoy mug shot (Credit: Riverhead police department)

A Mattituck man was arrested for the third time since April after stealing a blow-dryer and two curling irons from a local convenience story Tuesday morning, Riverhead Town police said.

Police said 30-year-old Shawn McAvoy picked up the items from the CVS Pharmacy on Route 58 about 7:45 a.m. and ran out of the store without paying. Later Tuesday afternoon, police stopped Mr. McAvoy for a traffic violation and recognized him since he was wearing the same clothes as the suspect, according to a police report. He was charged with petit larceny.

Mr. McAvoy was arrested and taken to police headquarters to be arraigned, police said. The two curling irons and the blow dryer were not recovered by police.

Mr. McAvoy was most recently arrested in May for DWI and disorderly conduct, according to previous reports.

07/07/14 10:20am
A Sea Tow helps pull the downed plane from water in Mattituck Inlet Monday afternoon. (Credit: Paul Squire)

A Sea Tow worker helps pull the downed plane from Mattituck Inlet Monday afternoon. (Credit: Paul Squire)

Update (3:15 p.m.): Brookhaven Town officials have confirmed that the pilot killed in Monday morning’s plane crash in the Long Island Sound had taken off from Brookhaven Calabro Airport.

U.S. Coast Guard officials have yet to release his identity, pending notification of next of kin.

Meanwhile, Sea Tow has brought the downed airplane back to shore in Mattituck. A National Transportation Safety Board spokesman said the agency is investigating the crash.

Update (12:15 p.m.): A Southold police marine unit has transported the body of a pilot involved in Monday’s fatal plane crash in the Long Island Sound to the state boat ramp at Mattituck Inlet.

The body was then transferred to a Suffolk County Medical Examiner van that was waiting on the scene.

Southold police Detective Sergeant John Sinning described the amateur built plane as a “single seater,” saying the male pilot was the lone occupant.

He was pronounced dead about noon Monday, U.S. Coast Guard officials said. Mattituck Fire Department divers recovered the body from the aircraft, according to the Coast Guard. The victim’s identity is pending notification of next of kin, Sgt. Sinning said.

The National Transportation Safety Board will be the lead agency investigating the crash, officials said.

Update (11:45 a.m.): The Federal Aviation Administration has identified the plane in Monday morning’s fatal crash in the Long Island Sound as a single-engine, fixed wing Raven — an amateur built aircraft.

(Click here for FAA information on amateur built aircraft.)

The U.S. Coast Guard found the aircraft submerged in water north of Mattituck, an FAA spokesman said.

The plane is registered to an address in lower Manhattan. Its engine was manufactured by Lycoming and the plane is classified as “experimental,” according to registry information.

Update (11 a.m.): Local authorities are saying an aircraft and at least one body have been recovered from Long Island Sound waters off the coast of Mattituck Inlet Monday morning.

Southold Town Police Chief Martin Flatley confirmed at 10:45 a.m. that the pilot had died in the crash.

U.S. Coast Guard officials said they received an 8:50 a.m. notification from another aircraft in the vicinity that a “small, white, experimental aircraft with a parachute deployed” had gone down in the Sound.

The Coast Guard and local police are investigating.

A Southold Police marine unit recovered the aircraft, which was being secured in the water.

Original story: Police, firefighters and the U.S. Coast Guard are investigating a report that an “experimental” aircraft had gone down in the Long Island Sound about seven miles off Iron Pier Beach in Jamesport Monday morning, officials said.

Riverhead police Lt. David Lessard speculated that the aircraft that crashed might have been a drone.

The report came in from a seaplane pilot about 9:30 a.m., who reportedly saw the aircraft go down off the shore, according to an Riverhead ambulance volunteer at the scene.

Jamesport Fire Department and Riverhead police both responded to the Sound beach and launched boats to search the area.

The Coast Guard is currently investigating the report, though a spokesman declined to comment further.

Check back for further updates once more information is available.

cmiller@timesreview.com

Southold Town police sergeants confer with town marine unit officers after they arrived in Mattituck about noon Monday with the crash victim's body on board. (Credit: Paul Squire)

Southold Town police sergeants confer with marine unit officers after they arrived in Mattituck about noon Monday with the crash victim’s body on board. (Credit: Paul Squire)

Jamesport firefighters launch a rescue boat from Iron Pier Beach during Monday morning's search and rescue efforts in the Long Island Sound. (Credit: Carrie Miller)

Jamesport firefighters launch a rescue boat from Iron Pier Beach during Monday morning’s search and rescue efforts in the Long Island Sound. (Credit: Carrie Miller)

06/24/14 4:44pm
06/24/2014 4:44 PM
Laura Courtney with the note and $10 bill left at her house Monday. (Credit: Vera Chinese)

Laura Courtney with the note and $10 bill left at her house Monday. (Credit: Vera Chinese)

A Jamesport homeowner said she was a little surprised to find a note and a $10 bill left at her front door when she returned home from a brief excursion to Greenport Monday afternoon.

But she was downright shocked when she realized that, in exchange for the money, the person took a metal table and three stained glass beads from her backyard.

(more…)

05/05/14 12:24pm
Members of the U.S. Coast Guard boat into the Mattituck Inlet on Monday morning. (Credit: Joseph Pinciaro)

A group of U.S. Coast Guard members in Mattituck Inlet Monday morning with the body of the missing boater. (Credit: Joseph Pinciaro). (Credit: Joseph Pinciaro)

The U.S. Coast Guard recovered the body of a missing boater east of Mattituck Inlet Monday morning, one day after he was reported missing in the Long Island Sound, according to the U.S. Coast Guard.  (more…)

05/04/14 4:01pm
Police return to the shore after they were unable to locate a sailboat that had issued a distress call Sunday afternoon. (Credit: Grant Parpan)

A police boat returns to the shore after officers were unable to locate a sailboat that had issued a distress call Sunday afternoon. The U.S. Coast Guard is continuing the search. (Credit: Grant Parpan)

A missing person report is being filed for the owner of a sailboat that made a distress call from the Long Island Sound Sunday afternoon, according to a Riverhead Town police press release.

Ciro Stellges, 59, of Selden was operating a 26-foot fiberglass sailboat named “MAC” when he called 911 at around 1 p.m. and told police his boat was “taking on water,” officials said. The sailboat was built in 1977 by C&C Yachts and its registration number is NY7059FR, police said.

It’s possible Mr. Stellges made the distress call while his boat was sinking near Wading River beach, police said. He had left from Mattituck earlier in the day and was heading to Port Washington, officials said.

The Riverhead Police Dive Rescue Team and Suffolk County Police Department Aviation and Marine units searched for the sailboat, officials said, and Jamesport and Wading River fire departments were on standby.

The boat was not found after a more than 60-minute police boat search of the water, officials said. The police search was finally called off shortly after 2 p.m., but the Coast Guard confirmed at 3:30 p.m. that it is “in the process of conducting a search.”

An officer from the Coast Guard station in New London, Conn. said its search is focused three miles off the shore between Jamesport and Mattituck. The Coast Guard is using two 45-foot boats and a helicopter to search for the missing sailboat, an officer confirmed at 5:30 p.m.

gparpan@timesreview.com