Rockland Community College’s main and Haverstraw campuses will be closing at 1:00 PM today.
Spring Valley fire officials are raising concerns about the state of equipment after three trucks were forced to receive repairs. Much of the department’s equipment is aging and broken down, and volunteers are urging village officials to do something about the lack of equipment. Mayor Demeza Delhomme stated that he will be putting funding for the department into his proposed budget for 2015, which must be approved by April 30, and Trustee Vilair Fonvil stated that he would approve a $2-3 million bond for new equipment and vehicles, and Trustee Asher Grossman agreed that new funding is necessary. The village has a history of disagreements between Mayor Delhomme and the board of trustees, and some residents and volunteer firefighters have claimed that plays a part in their lack of funding. The trustees voted no on the Mayor’s recent proposal for twelve additional building and fire inspectors, stating there was not enough information to pass.
A jury is set to continue deliberations today after sitting in discussion all day on Friday, asking to see evidence and testimonies once more in the case against former Chestnut Ridge mother Lacey Spears who is accused of killing her son with fatal levels of sodium in January 2014. The jury began deliberating the case on Thursday and continued Friday, watching video evidence brought forward by the prosecution, which shows Spears and her five-year old son Garnett head into the bathroom and soon after the young boy getting visibly sick in his hospital room. The jury spent most time with the video, but also referenced charts of sodium, and testimony by a friend of Spears. Jurors also asked the judge for a definition of “reckless and depraved indifference”. Spears is waiting for the jury’s decision on charges of second-degree murder and first-degree manslaughter.
Lawyers completed their closing arguments to the court on Thursday in the case against former Chestnut Ridge mother Lacey Spears who is accused of killing her son Garnett in January of last year. Prosecutors stated at the trial’s final hearing that the 27-year old mother had been poisoning her five-year old son with sodium through his feeding tube to make him sick, before he succumbed to fatal doses during a hospital stay. Prosecutors claim that Spears had time to poison her son during a bathroom break before his health began to decline, and an empty feeding bag tested positive for high levels of sodium. Spears’ attorneys blamed Nyack Hospital for not keeping up with the young boy’s dehydration, before he was transferred to Westchester Medical Center. Defense Attorney Stephen Reibling also argued that there is not enough clear evidence for a jury to find his client guilty, stating that the case is circumstantial. The jury began deliberating the case and will continue to do so today at 10:00 AM.
An Orange County man who was accused of killing a Rockland man suspected of rape in Ramapo, has been indicted by a grand jury. David Carlson of Sparrowbush was accused of shooting Norris Acosta-Sanchez in 2013, while allegedly defending himself when the two struggled for a shotgun on Carlson’s property. Carlson stated that he was attempting to turn Acosta-Sanchez into police after he had learned of the rape charges against the man. The case had been thrown out by a judge in November, who stated that the evidence presented by prosecutors was compromised. On Thursday Carlson was indicted once again on charges of second-degree murder, and first and second-degree manslaughter. He will be arraigned on March 6.
According to recent reports by the Journal News, the former principal of the Hilltop School in Haverstraw, Kimberly Taylor, was moved to a new position as administrator within the Board of Cooperative Educational Services, with responsibilities including reviewing student assessments and organizing summer schools. Taylor and the BOSCES district are defendants in a lawsuit filed by former aid Kenneth Egan, who claims the district fired him when he came forward with accusations of abuse. Egan had recorded audio of what he states is Taylor screaming at children in June 2011 and calling them names such as retarded. Superintendent of BOSCES Mary Jean Marsico stated to the news outlet that Taylor had requested a new position after the lawsuit and the transfer was rushed during the recent news rushed during the recent news stories on the situation. Psychologist Christine Ditrano was appointed as the new principal and will start this coming Monday. Marsico stated that the decision to rush the transfer of positions was to, “get some consistency in the building.”
Police stated that a bus driver for the East Ramapo School District was arrested when he failed to properly check the bus and left a boy sleeping alone after the morning run. West Nyack resident Matthew Murphy faces charges after he completed his morning drop-off two weeks ago at Hempstead Elementary School, during which the 9-year old child fell asleep. Murphy is accused of leaving the student alone for nearly 40 minutes. Bus drivers are required to thoroughly check each vehicle after every run. Murphy will be seen in Ramapo Town Clerk next week.
New York State Lottery officials announced that a winning ticket worth $7 million was sold at a store in New City. According to officials the ticket was a $25 Golden Ticket Game scratch off and was bought from the Just A Dollar on North Main Street. The winner has come forward, but will likely not be announced for a couple of weeks.
According to police a pedestrian was struck and killed by a car in Monsey on Wednesday night. The accident occurred around 7:30 PM, police stating that the Hyundai Elantra was driving north on Robert Pitt Drive before hitting the man near Route 59. The identity of the victim has not been released and police were investigating the scene for several hours Wednesday night. Police stated that they believe the man was crossing the street when he was struck, and the driver of the car did stop. It is unclear if criminal charges will be filed and police are continuing to investigate the accident.
Officials reported a fire early this morning at a home on Park Ave in Airmont. Firefighters from the Monsey, South Spring Valley and Hillcrest departments responded to a call from Ramapo Police around 2:00 Thursday morning that the home was engulfed in flames, and spent several hours into the morning attempting to put them out. Orange and Rockland crews were also on the scene to shut off the gas, which police stated was helping to spread the fire throughout the house. All those in the home were able to get out before the fire spread, but the house was completely destroyed by the blaze.