Articles by

Paul Squire and Carrie Miller

10/14/14 10:06am
The house on South Harbor Road in Southold, where emergency officials were called following a shooting early Tuesday morning. (Credit: Carrie Miller)

The house on South Harbor Road in Southold, where emergency officials were called following a shooting early Tuesday morning. (Credit: Carrie Miller)

Three subjects have been arrested in connection with the overnight shooting in Southold Tuesday morning, Southold Town police chief Martin Flatley confirmed Tuesday evening.  (more…)

10/07/14 3:56pm
Tom Cutinella's family embrace after the teen's funeral Tuesday morning. The 16-year-old was killed after being injured while playing football last week.

Tom Cutinella’s family embraces after the teen’s funeral Tuesday morning. The 16-year-old was killed after being injured while playing football last week. (Credit: Paul Squire)

Tom Cutinella was a gifted athlete, an exceptional student and a patriotic young man who planted flags at Calverton National Cemetery and had dreams of going to West Point, his father Frank said to hundreds during a eulogy opening his funeral service Tuesday morning.

But while the teen loved his country and competing in sports, to Tom, his family always came first.  (more…)

06/04/13 9:21pm

Tanger II food court

A Mastic man was arrested for making a terroristic threat Tuesday at Tanger Outlets after he told police he had a machete in his backpack and felt like hurting people, Riverhead police said.

Police were called to the Route 58 shopping complex about 12:45 p.m. for reports of a man who was threatening to hurt himself and others, officials said.

Police arrived at the Tanger Outlet II food court and found John Medina, 32, whom police said had a machete in his backpack at the time. Mr. Medina told responding officers he wanted to “hurt others, hurt himself,” police said.

Riverhead Detective Sgt. Joseph Loggia said Mr. Medina voluntarily gave himself up to police and told them he knew what he was feeling was wrong. He never took the machete out of his backpack, Sgt. Loggia said.

“He’s a veteran who has some issues,” the detective said. “He’s definitely struggling.”

He said Mr. Medina, who works at the Levi’s outlet store in the shopping center, contacted an acquaintance and explained he was having disturbed thoughts. The acquaintance then called the police to alert them to Mr. Medina’s condition.

Mr. Medina was arrested and charged with making a terroristic threat, a Class D felony punishable by up to seven years in prison, and a misdemeanor criminal possession of a weapons charge, police said.

He was arraigned in Justice Court and is being held at the county jail.

“We are thankful that no one was hurt,” said Janine Nebons, the Riverhead outlet center’s general manager. “The incident is under police investigation. We appreciate your patience while the police investigation is underway.”

[email protected]

01/23/13 4:52pm
PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | Erek Berntsen cuts wood at a construction site near the Glass Greenhouse in Jamesport.

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | Construction worker Erek Berntsen near the Glass Greenhouse in Jamesport.

For most, even the easiest tasks become a hassle when temperatures start to drop.

But for many workers across the North Fork this week, being out in the cold is just part of the job.

“You can’t take a job outside and not expect to be out in the cold,” said Erek Berntsen, a construction worker at the Glass Greenhouse in Jamesport.

High temperatures reached 20 degrees on the North Fork Wednesday, about 10 to 15 degrees below normal, said Dan Hoffman, a meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Upton.

“The next 36 hours are going to be the coldest,” Mr. Hoffman said. Temperatures will slowly rise into the weekend, reaching the freezing point by Sunday, he said.

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | Herman Salazar trims grape vines at a vineyard in Jamesport Wednesday afternoon.

PAUL SQUIRE PHOTO | Herman Salazar trims grape vines at a vineyard in Jamesport Wednesday afternoon.

Mr. Berntsen had been out in the cold since 7 a.m., cutting pieces of wood to build the rafters of a new farm stand on the property.

A few miles east on Route 25, Bob Boergesson, a Mattituck-Cutchogue School District crossing guard, said wind is the biggest challenge he faces in the cold.

“Layers … [cover] up as much as you can,” he advised. “It’s the wind that gets you.”

On South Harbor Road in Southold, seven LIPA workers were found using a utility trucks to trim trees away from power wires.

“It is extremely cold,” conceded a LIPA foreman, who did not give his name. “Even colder up there.”

Despite the frigid temperatures, the foreman said worker morale is still high.

“We’re always good,” he said. “We complain, but we get the work done.”

At a local vineyard, laborer Emilio Jebier used a pruner to cut away dead vines from the trellis.

“Good vines means good selection [of grapes] for next year,” Mr. Jebier said while working at Jason’s Vineyard in Jamesport. Mr. Jebier has been tending to vines for 13 years, and said he’s used to working in the cold when he needs to.

Nearby, Herman Salazar of Mattituck was also clipping vines, a black ski mask covering his face from the bitter wind.

A group of half a dozen workers had been out at the vineyard  since 7 a.m. and will keep trimming until 4:30 p.m., Mr. Salazar said. The next day, they’ll do it all again. The group works six days a week in the field.

“The snow isn’t bad, the cold [is],” Mr. Salazar said, peeling the ski mask below his face. “Today is very freezing.”

But some workers said this week’s cold weather wasn’t the worse they’ve experienced.

“This is nothing,” said a Suffolk County Water Authority worker on Route 25 in Cutchogue. “When you have a water main break, you’re out there for 24 hours straight in the cold.”

Their advice? Keep busy.

“Working a couple years in this, you get used to it,” said another worker.

[email protected]

01/15/13 3:57pm


North Fork residents went to the polls Tuesday, with voting places reporting steady turnout in a special election between Riverhead Supervisor Sean Water and Southold Town Councilman Al Krupski for Ed Romaine’s vacant Suffolk County Legislature seat.

Poll workers at Pulaski Street School and John Wesley Village in Riverhead reported turnout was high — at least higher than other non-Election Day votes, like political primaries.

“This year is a pretty decent turnout so far,” said elections assistant coordinator John McIntyre, adding that the John Wesley Village polling place had seen 100 voters as of about noon.

Voters interviewed in Riverhead were mixed in their support for either Mr. Walter or Mr. Krupski.

Mike Meyer, a resident of Riverhead for the past 10 years, said he supported Mr. Walter because of his policies in Riverhead.

“I think he’s had some good ideas with what he’s done with … downtown,” Mr. Meyer said.

Peter and Adelaide Ferrero, both of Riverhead, said they voted for Mr. Krupski, saying that they knew his family and that he was an “upstanding citizen.”

Most of those polled at the Mattituck High School voting place said they were voting for Mr. Krupski because of his history of service and his stance on conservation and open space.

Pat DeRidder said she voted for Mr. Krupski because she wanted to see more of the North Fork preserved for future generations.

“I want to see [my grandchildren] … enjoy the beautiful community with all this land,” she said.

Still, a few said they would be voting for Mr. Walter because he shares their conservative values.

“I vote for conservatives only,” said Jack Peters, a 30-year Mattituck resident. “I just think we need a major switch.”

[email protected]