The Federal Bureau of Investigation early Thursday morning, arrested a prominent Rockland official on corruption charges. Supervisor Christopher St. Lawrence of the town of Ramapo and his office were the focus of an FBI raid on town offices on May 15, 2013 during which federal agents collected evidence and documents. Since then no arrests had been made, or information released. Until this morning when St. Lawrence was officially accused of violating federal laws which reportedly included the possible movement of money between the town and the Local Development Corporation set up to oversee the baseball stadium that was built in the town, as well as overstating assets when paperwork was filed to get a $25 million bond approved to help get the controversial park built. An audit completed by the New York State Comptroller’s Office showed that the expected $25 million cot of the park was actually closer to more than $60 million, a number which the comptroller’s office stated taxpayers could wind up being responsible for. Patrick Withers, the Deputy Supervisor of Ramapo stated that he will ensure the town’s government will continue to run efficiently, though he is not sure whether or not St. Lawrence will continue to run efficiently, though he is not sure whether St. Lawrence will continue his duties. U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara will be holding a press conference at 11:00 AM, and released a statement early this morning saying that Aaron Troodler was also arrested for signing off on the bond’s paperwork despite it allegedly having untrue information. And both are facing charges of conspiracy in connection to municipal bonds, securities fraud, and wire fraud. Troodler is the former Executive Director of the Ramapo LDC.
According to police a Nanuet man was arrested over the weekend after a car chase that ended in New Jersey. Palisades Interstate Parkway Police stated that 38-year old Michael DePalma allegedly struck a vehicle around 9:00 PM Friday near Exit 7 in Rockland County and drove away from the scene, leading police through Rockland before he was finally stopped at the George Washington Bridge in Fort Lee, New Jersey. Police discovered cocaine and Xanax on Depalma’s person and charged him with driving under the influence as well as possession of narcotics paraphernalia and obstructing law enforcement officials. Depalma is being held on $50,000 bail in Bergen County Jail.
A Westchester County Judge announced a ruling on Tuesday, in the case against Kathleen Dymes of Croton-on-Hudson in the death of her six-year old daughter in April 2015. On Easter Sunday last year Lacey Carr’s father, David Carr, discovered the unconscious bodies of Lacey and Dymes, who officials determined had suffered overdoses of various prescription drugs, including Benadryl, Oxycodone, Valium, and Morphine, as well as traces of alcohol. The incident left Dymes in a coma for two weeks and officials stated she suffered from severe depression throughout the last year, leading to hospitalization. In January of this year Dymes pleaded guilty to being responsible for her young daughter’s death, after she was charged with negligent homicide and on Tuesday was seen in court again where the judge stated, since the evidence in the case showed that Dymes did not purposely giver Lacey the drugs that led to her death and she only attempted to take her own life after realizing her daughter had died , probation was an appropriate sentence.
The convicted killer of young Rockland woman has been denied parole once again. 55-year old Robert McCain was accused in the 1980 murder and sexual assault of 16-year old Paula Bohovesky of Pearl River, and was arrested along with now 63-year old Richard LaBarbera for the crime, for which both are now serving 25-years to life in prison. They have continuously petitioned for release since becoming eligible in 2005. McCain can now attempt to receive early release in 2017, despite the state parole board denying his most recent appeal on Tuesday. Many Rockland residents band together each time either man petitions for parole, neighbors and friends of Bohovesky and her mother Lois, who still lives in Pearl River, show overwhelming support for the family by voicing their opposition to both men’s potential release and passing around petitions against it, accumulating hundreds of signatures. McCain and LaBarbera deny having any part in the crime, which took place on October 28, 1080 when Paula was walking home from the Pearl River Library. According to official reports on investigation the two men had been drinking all day when they came across the young girl. A medical report stated she had been raped as well but the charges were rejected by a jury, which convicted the men of second degree murder.
A lawsuit filed by a group of Rockland County education advocates has been dismissed. According to Laura Barbieri, the lawyer who filed the class action suit on behalf of the law firm Advocates for Justice, the group has plans to file again within a month. The lawsuit was against the East Ramapo School District and several local yeshivas, or private religious institution, claiming that officials were not providing students with proper educations by not teaching secular subjects. Included in the suit was the State Department of Education, which the group claimed helped continue the conditions in the schools. According to the Journal News, which broke the story, the group voluntarily dismissed the suit against the school, the district, and the Education Department which the group voluntarily dismissed the case. Barbieri stated to the newspaper that Advocates for Justice was not prepared to serve the defendants and are currently preparing to refile, adding another plaintiff to the list of former students accusing the education systems of failing them in regards to their curriculums.
The New York State Board of Regents met this week to vote on allowing undocumented immigrants to apply for teacher certifications. According to Education Commissioner Mary Ellen Elia, the board decided to approve the decision, stating that most of those interested in applying have gone to school and worked hard, but are often denied the opportunity to teach due to their immigration status. Officials referenced the federal policy that was enacted in 2012, Deferred Action for Childhood arrivals, which allows children of undocumented immigrants that were raised in America to defer removal from the Country for two years. Those that fit the requirements of DACA act will now be able to become certified to teach in New York State. Governor Andrew Cuomo’s office commented that he must review the controversial policy, but stated that the legality will depend on the way it is written.
Stony Point Police arrested two men this week, after they allegedly installed a skimmer in an ATM at the Sterling Bank on Liberty Drive. 31-year old Roberto Lombardi of Queens were arrested on Saturday after an investigation into a complaint that a card was sticking in the machine proved that they had used fake names and papers to gain access to the bank, where they then placed a skimming device on the ATM. Police charged the two men with Grand Larceny, possession of burglar tools, possession of a forgery device, and identity theft and are being held in Rockland County Jail.
According to CLarkstown Police two people were found dead inside their New City on Tuesday. Police responded to the home on Raven Terrace after they received a call from the couple’s son when he went to check on Joseph and Elizabeth Codi, and discovered their bodies in separate bedrooms. Officials stated on Thursday that an autopsy determined 89-year old Joseph and 85-year old Elizabeth most likely died of natural causes over a week before they were found and toxicology reports will be returned at a later date and will provide further information about the cause, such as if Carbon Monoxide poisoning was a possibility. As investigations continue, police have officially ruled out foul play.
Big news today, the WRCR family is welcoming in a new cohost to the morning show! Meredyth is moving on to the Big Apple to further pursue a career in acting, but fear not, Jordan Baker, a Rockland County local, will be taking over. Hailing from New York City, Jordan now lives with her husband, actor Kevin Kilner in Tappan. Jordan is also an actress with experience in film, television, and theater. Her most recent work includes a film titled “5 Flights Up” starring Diane Keaton and Morgan Freeman. WRCR, which recently moved to a 10,000 watt signal on 1700 AM over the summer of 2015 and reaches more than 12 million people from Rockland County to New York City, is thrilled to welcome Jordan to the team!
According to Clarkstown Police, an 18-year old Ramapo High School graduate has been accused of sexually abusing an underage teenage boy. Marcus Stroud Met the younger teen through a program for which he is a volunteer wrestling coach in Rockland, Westchester, and Bergen counties. According to the parents of the victim, beginning in December Stroud used snapchat and other forms of social media to lure their son. Police arrested Stroud on Monday and he is currently being held on multiple charges, including second-degree criminal sex act, as well as sexual abuse and child endangerment. He is expected to be indicted on Friday