Jose Martinez made an unexpected court appearance today at the Westchester County Court in White Plains, NY to enter a guilty plea as to a course of sexual conduct against a child in the 2nd degree, a class D violent felony. Under the plea agreement, Martinez admitted he had anal and/or oral sexual contact with a then 14-year old male student at the Isaac E. Young Middle School.
Martinez was released on his own recognizance.
In exchange for admitting guilt and avoiding the necessity of the victim having to testify at a trial, Martinez received a "sentence promise" from Criminal Court Judge Susan Cacace that he will receive a six month sentence of "shock probation" which will amount to 119 days in jail or "time served", according to Tracey Everson, spokesperson for the Westchester County District Attorney. Martinez is otherwise facing 7 years in prison.Read more
This is Part IV in a series. To read from the beginning, go back to Part I.
Suzanne Ribando was not sure why but she was in the Westchester County Jail.
Never in trouble before the Hickeys bought the house next door in 2004, her quiet life had fallen to pieces ever since. She did not understand how things could have come to this point. Days earlier, pushed to the breaking point after two years of torment at the hands of her neighbors, Patrick and Tracey Hickey, she had put a knife to her throat and told police officers she wanted to die. She had been taken by the police to Mount Vernon hospital for psychiatric observation and released after it was determined she was not a danger to herself or others. Although the court was aware that she had been confined against her will at Mount Vernon hospital, an appearance date was scheduled during her confinement and an arrest warrant issued for her failing to appear. For reasons not clear to her, Ribando was subsequently arrested and remanded to Valhalla. When her mother, Betty Ribando, came to the jail to visit her, she told her mother that although she thought she had been sent for psychiatric observation no psychiatrists had evaluated her.
In the meantime, Betty Ribando, a frail woman with significant medical problems, had called Michael Galluzzi, a successful Manhattan attorney specializing in civil litigation. Galluzzi, born and raised in Yonkers, was no stranger to the ways of the Westchester old boys network. He grew up knowing Suzanne Ribando as the quiet, shy daughter of his godfather, Jimmy Ribando a big band trumpet player who toured the country as a professional musician.Read more
Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore announced today that Lillian Montilla, 44, of 757 Empire Boulevard, Brooklyn, New York, was sentenced to 1 to 3 years indeterminate in state prison on a guilty plea to one count of Grand Larceny in the Second Degree, a class “C” Felony, relating to the theft of $191,235.05 from her former employer.
Between January 8, 2009 and July 23, 2010, the defendant, who was a payroll assistant for Westchester Community Opportunity Program, Inc., admitted she stole the money by cashing checks made payable to former employees of the private, not-for-profit social service agency based in Greenburgh.
A restitution judgment order in the amount of $191,235.05 was entered by the Court.
The scheme came to light when a former WestCOP employee contacted the organization stating he had received a W-2 statement for 2009 earnings yet he was no longer employed by WestCOP during that time.
Greenburgh Police were contacted and began an investigation in late July 2010 during which two other defendants were also arrested.Read more
New Rochelle, New York (June 29, 2011) – New Rochelle City Council Members Louis Trangucci, Albert Tarantino and Richard St. Paul issued a statement today calling for an independent financial audit of City finances and a criminal referral to the U.S. Attorney in the wake of criminal fraud charges against a supervisor in the Department of Public Works.
On Tuesday, in the Westchester County Court in White Plains, Judge Alberto Lorenzo unsealed a 66 count grand jury indictment against Fevang covering 22 specific instances of fraud involving rigged bids going back to 2006.
“I am deeply saddened to hear that some people were asleep at the wheel while taxpayers’ money was being taken for personal benefit”, said City Council Member Louis Trangucci. “Based on a review of personnel records this is an employee who should have never been hired in the first place.”Read more
(WHITE PLAINS, NY) -- Former New Rochelle DPW Fleet Manager Richard Fevang was led away in handcuffs by Westchester County police officers after Judge Albert Lorenzo unsealed a 66 Count Grand Jury indictment against Fevang. As the indictment was unsealed, Fevang stood before Judge Lorenzo, head slightly bowed, his hands together in front of him, his suit jacket draped over the handcuffs secured to each wrist.
The indictment ends an investigation that began after allegations against Fevang were first published on Talk of the Sound in 2009. New Rochelle City Council Member Louis Trangucci played a critical role in advancing the investigation when he delivered boxes of DPW invoices to Assistant District Attorney Brian Conway Deputy Chief of the Public Integrity Bureaus in early 2010. Conway was on hand as the indictment was unsealed. Assistant District Attorney Shara Abraham of the Investigations Division is working with Conway in prosecuting the case.Read more
Talk of the Sound has been getting a good deal of traffic from a Connecticut web site. A review of our web traffic turned up the cause; a sad story today that related to a story we had run last year.
NEW HAVEN — A former Hillhouse High School basketball star who later played in college was shot to death early today.
Donnell Allick, 31, was shot as many as five times at about 1:45 a.m. at an apartment at 201 Diamond St. in the city's Beaver Hills neighborhood and later died at Yale-New Haven Hospital.
Two quotes jumped out from the New Haven story:
1. “Unfortunately he made a bad decision as a young man and he to spend some time in jail. But he came home and he was attempting to get his life back on track,” Carolina said.Read more
Sources with direct knowledge of a public corruption investigation in New Rochelle by the Westchester County District Attorney tell Talk of the Sound that Fleet Manager Richard Fevang is the sole focus of the pending grand jury indictment.
Several sources have complained that the DA's office appears to be singling out Fevang and ignoring siginificant wrong doing by other municipal employees. Some well-placed sources have speculated that this may be the result of political considerations by Janet DeFiore, a Democrat, who will need to support from New Rochelle Democrats when she runs for re-election. By laying the entire case at the feet of Fevang, the City can then claim they have got rid of the "one rotten apple" when they fire him to create the illusion that Fevang was a rogue employee and that no other municipal employees were involved.Read more
Westchester County District Attorney Janet DiFiore announced that Laurell Smith, 21, of 311 North Avenue, New Rochelle, New York was convicted today after a jury trial of one count of Manslaughter in the First Degree, a class “B” Felony, for a daytime stabbing on September 18th, 2010 on North Avenue in New Rochelle, resulting in the death of Kevin Williams.
The murder was first reported on Talk of the Sound within minutes of the stabbing. Talk of the Sound was first to report that Kevin Williams had died, turning the case into a murder investigation.
Rico Johnson, 20, of 311 North Avenue, New Rochelle, New York had previously pled guilty on March 11th, 2011 to one count of Hindering Prosecution in the Second Degree, a class “E” Felony and one count of Tampering with Physical Evidence, a class “E” Felony. Johnson will be sentenced on June 14th, 2011.
Krista Leggieri,18, of 311 North Avenue, New Rochelle, New York had previously pled guilty on March 11th, 2011 to one count of Hindering Prosecution in the Second Degree, a class “E” Felony and one count of Tampering with Physical Evidence, a class “E” Felony. Leggieri will be sentenced on June 14th, 2011.Read more