09/24/14 12:20pm
09/24/2014 12:20 PM
Paul Tromblee mug shot (Credit: Suffolk County police)

Paul Tromblee mug shot (Credit: Suffolk County police)

A Manorville man who pleaded guilty to armed robbery in connection with a string of robberies across Suffolk County — including one in Calverton and Mattituck — was sentenced to five years in prison Monday, according to the Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office. (more…)

06/10/14 1:04pm
06/10/2014 1:04 PM

Phone scammers attempting to swindle victims into giving them cash are getting creative and attempting calls more frequently, according to warnings issued by local police departments.

The recent uptick in attempted phone scams include a number of different scenarios designed to frighten victims into sending money through a Western Union MoneyGram or a prepaid Green Dot Card. (more…)

01/15/14 7:36am
01/15/2014 7:36 AM

The National Weather Service and Suffolk County Police are warning drivers about dense fog and icy road conditions this morning.

Police are advising motorists to use extreme caution when driving on roadways in Suffolk County.

“The roadways are icy and considered hazardous. There is also limited visibility due to dense fog,” police said.

The National Weather Service issued an advisory through 9 a.m. Wednesday morning for southeast Suffolk County, stating:  “The combination of light winds and abundant low level moisture has caused fog to develop across the area. Temperatures in many locations will remain at or below the freezing mark though mid-morning or so. This will result in icy conditions on any untreated surfaces. Anyone traveling should exercise extra caution and leave plenty of space in front of them.”

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01/10/14 11:21am
01/10/2014 11:21 AM

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | A Southold Highway Department turns onto the Main Road heading west from Jockey Creek Drive a little after 1 pm Friday.

Update: The Southold Highway Department has dispatched sanding trucks to several hotspots in town to help with icing roads, including Peconic Bay Boulevard and a section of Route 48 in Mattituck. No roads have been officially closed as of 1 p.m., according to highway superintendent Vincent Orlando.

Original Story: The Suffolk County Police Department is advising motorists to use extreme caution when driving on roadways due to icy conditions.

The advisory was issued shortly after 11 a.m. Friday morning, stating “the roadways are icy and considered hazardous.”

The U.S. National Weather Service reported an hour earlier that rain is moving across Long Island and is “creating some slick and hazardous conditions where temps are currently below freezing.”

“While temperatures will be slowly rising above freezing over the next few hours, give yourself plenty of extra time while traveling and go slow,” the weather report states.

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12/09/13 1:39pm
12/09/2013 1:39 PM

Southold Town police car

Funding from Suffolk County to provide emergency service responses got a boost recently, as county legislators unanimously passed a measure which will give non-county-based response units a percentage share of county revenues in future budget cycles.

Previously negotiated each budget cycle, the amount coming to Riverhead and Southold-based public safety access points (as well as eight others), as the units are called, will now bring in a certain percentage based on the amount of revenue coming in.

“Whenever we can get something in the county charter that guarantees a fair share for the area, that’s a good thing,” said Legislator Jay Schneiderman, I-Montauk, who sponsored the bill. North Fork Legislator Al Krupski, D-Cutchogue, was one of the bill’s four co-sponsors.

“The way county government is set up, with 16 legislators from up west and only two out east, we don’t want to get into constant budget battles. So this is much better moving forward.”

The legislation comes in the wake of an audit by County Comptroller Joseph Sawicki on the county’s revenue sharing program for non-county PSAPs, which includes four on the South Fork, as well as others in Amityville, Smithtown, Babylon and Northport Village. All non-county PSAPs will receive no less than 20 percent of the revenue tied to funding the services.

PSAPs pick up emergency calls and dispatch to the proper emergency responding unit, whether it’s fire, police or ambulance. Throughout most of the county, the duties are handled by Suffolk County Police Department or Fire Rescue and Emergency Services, though having locally-based units is important in vital situations, Mr. Schneiderman said.

“It’s good, because those people know the area well,” he said. “I’d be nervous about someone in Yaphank picking up a 911 call for someone out of Montauk. So it’s good to have these somewhat decentralized. But it’s expensive to maintain them.”

Previously, Mr. Schneiderman said, funding from the county was tied to making equipment upgrades. The new legislation allows local PSAPs to use the funds for personnel as well moving forward.

“The idea is to guarantee faster, more accurate response times,” he said. “To give them adequate personnel and equipment to do their duty as best as possible.”

Riverhead Police Chief David Hegermiller said the legislation likely wouldn’t add too much to his budget and considering the cost for the high-tech equipment, it wouldn’t add “anything major.”

“All this stuff is so expensive, but it gives us a little more wiggle room,” said Mr. Hegermiller. “But it beats [the amount of money coming from the county] going down.”

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11/22/13 2:38pm
11/22/2013 2:38 PM
Paul Tromblee

Paul Tromblee

A 35-year-old Manorville man accused of pulling off 10 armed robberies in Suffolk County, including one in Calverton and one Mattituck, was doing so to support a heroin addiction, according to the Suffolk County District Attorney’s office.

Paul Tromblee pleaded not guilty in county criminal court Friday to nine counts of first-degree armed robbery and one count of third-degree robbery. He was then held on $250,000 cash bail or $500,000 bond by Suffolk County Court Judge John Iliou.

Mr. Tromblee is accused of displaying a firearm and demanding money from clerks in 10 different robberies from Oct. 30 to Nov. 7 to get money to support a heroin addiction, said assistant district attorney Tisha Burrows, the prosecutor assigned to the case.

“He admitted that orally and in writing,” Ms. Burrows told a reporter outside the courtroom following Mr. Tromblee’s arraignment on the indictment, which was handed up by a grand jury on Monday.

Mr. Tromblee, who has been in custody since his Nov. 9 arrest, wore green pants and a green T-shirt in court, exposing a sleeve tattoo on his right arm.

A number of his relatives were present, although none spoke in court or afterward when asked for comment by a reporter.

“After having met with many of his family members, I would say the allegations are out of character for Mr. Tromblee,” said Steve Politi, Mr. Tromblee’s attorney. He said there also are about a dozen character-reference letters supporting Mr. Tromblee from people outside his family.

“He has no criminal convictions,” Mr. Politi said of his client. “He’s a dad. He has an 8-year-old boy and he’s very loved by his family.”

Ms. Burrows said Mr. Tromblee began a pattern of robberies starting last month at small stores in which he would walk up to the counter and pretend to buy something, like a bottle of water or a beverage. When the clerk would open the register to make change, he would display a gun and demand money, often asking the clerk to lift up the register draw to make sure there was no money left under it, she said.

Many of the robberies were caught on surveillance videos, she said.

In an interview outside the courtroom, Ms. Burrows said Mr. Tromblee admitted to using a BB gun in the robberies, although no weapon has been recovered. She said whether he had a BB gun or a real gun would not affect the charge of first-degree robbery because he allegedly said during the robberies that he had a gun.

Judge Iliou said he believed the $250,000 bail demanded by the prosecutor was low, and he said that given the amount of Upstate jail time Mr. Tromblee potentially faces on these charges (25 years), and the allegation that he was doing the robberies to support a heroin addiction, he felt Mr. Tromblee did present a flight risk.

He then approved the $250,000 cash bail and $500,000 bond amounts, and set a return court date of Dec. 18.

Mr. Tromblee also faces a separate charge of possession of a hypodermic instrument, stemming from a Nov. 9 arrest by Suffolk County police in regard to an Oct. 30 incident.

The robberies occurred at gas stations in Calverton, Mastic, North Babylon, St. James, Dix Hills, and Bohemia, as well as Jamba Juice in Stony Brook, Kissed by the Sun Tanning in Islip, CVS Pharmacy in Lake Ronkonkoma, and Game Stop in Mattituck.

The Calverton robbery was at the Hess station by the LIE entrance ramp off Nugent Drive.

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11/11/13 10:42am
11/11/2013 10:42 AM


A Manorville man who police say is responsible for a string of robberies across Suffolk County – including one at a video game store in Mattituck – remains held on $100,000 cash bail and is due back in court on Friday.

Paul Tromblee, 35, was arrested on Saturday and was seen in First District Court in Central Islip on Sunday.

Suffolk County police announced the arrest on Saturday, and Southold Police later said, “additional charges for Tromblee are forthcoming regarding the Game Stop robbery in Southold Town.”

Online court records indicate that Tromblee is being held on $200,000 bond or $100,000 cash bail. Currently, Mr. Tromblee stands charged with eight counts of first-degree robbery and one count of third-degree robbery.

Since Oct. 26, gas stations in Calverton, Mastic, North Babylon, St. James, Dix Hills, and Bohemia as well as Jamba Juice in Stony Brook, Kissed by the Sun Tanning in Islip, and CVS Pharmacy in Lake Ronkonkoma were robbed by an armed suspect who demanded cash after pretending to purchase merchandise, police said. Utilizing video surveillance as well as tips, including information received via Crime Stoppers, Pattern Crime Unit detectives identified the suspect as Mr. Tromblee. He was located by detectives while driving on Sunrise Highway in Brookhaven around 3 p.m. Saturday.

Southold Police announced shortly after the Mattituck GameStop robbery that a link between the incident and the others further west were likely evident.

During the Mattituck robbery, which occurred last Wednesday, a man reportedly entered the store and “displayed what appeared to be a handgun,” getting away with an undisclosed amount of cash, according to a police statement. No one was hurt in the robbery, police at the scene said.

Detectives are continuing to investigate if Mr. Tromblee is responsible for similar incidents that occurred recently. Anyone with information about these incidents is asked to call anonymously to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220-TIPS. Police said all calls will remain confidential.

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05/21/13 6:44am
05/21/2013 6:44 AM

SUFFOLK COUNTY POLICE COURTESY PHOTO | Pictured from left to right are Sixth Precinct Officer Anthony Passarella, Sixth Precinct Officer Frank Ribaudo, Emergency Service Section Officer Lance Prager of Mattituck and Bruno Kaluzinski of Wading River.

An off-duty police officer from Mattituck on his way home from Advanced Life Support training, saved the life of an 86-year-old Wading River man on Friday, police said.

Lance Prager, an Emergency Services section officer with the Suffolk County Police Department, witnessed the man suffering cardiac arrest at the Agway store in Port Jefferson, when police say he sprung to action.

Mr. Prager asked an employee of the store to retrieve his medical bag from his car as he performed CPR on the man, who according to police had no pulse or respiration.

Soon after, Sixth Precinct patrol officers Anthony Passarella and Frank Ribaudo arrived on the scene and started doing compressions and helped administer a shock with a defibrillator, police said.

The victim then started breathing on his own and was taken by Port Jefferson Volunteer Ambulance to John T. Mather Memorial Hospital in Port Jefferson. He is currently in the critical care unit in stable condition, police said.

Read more in Thursday’s issue of The Suffolk Times.

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