Three men were arrested and charged with a burglary that took place during what the police said was a home invasion in the Center late Friday night.
According to the Shelter Island Police Department, Kevin E. Calderon, 26, of the Bronx, Livo Josue Melo, 27, of the Bronx, and Sivestro Mazzella, 70, of Yonkers, New York were arrested in Yonkers early Saturday by Shelter Island Police Department officers with assistance from the Yonkers Police Department and brought to Shelter Island for arraignment.
Sources close to the investigation said that nothing learned so far can tie this case to that of the home invasion of Reverend Canon Paul Wancura’s home in Silver Beach in March, which resulted in the death of the 87-year-old minister a month later. Sources said forensic evidence, now being examined by the New York State Police Department, would be a determining factor if any connection was made.
According to police, on Friday night a 911 call was fielded reporting a home invasion in the Center. A female in the residence said she was being held at gunpoint by several male suspects, who then fled.
Police responded and said the victim was “emotionally distraught.”
She was transported by Shelter Island Emergency Medical Services to Eastern Long Island Hospital for evaluation.
Officers collected preliminary evidence that led them to Yonkers, where the three suspects were detained, police said.
The New York State Police Bureau of Criminal investigation and Forensic Investigation Unit are currently working with the Shelter Island Police Department collecting evidence and additional information.
Police Chief Jim Read said that the case is “ongoing,” and additional charges and arrests may be presented to a Grand Jury.
Late Sunday afternoon, the three men were brought in handcuffs to Shelter Island Justice Court and arraigned before Judge Helen Rosenblum. The judge placed a cash bail of $75,000 for each defendant. There will be a “bail source hearing” later in the week, a process that is sometimes used to determine if money provided for bail has been illegally procured.
Island resident and attorney Stanly Birnbaum represented Mr. Calderon and Mr. Melo at the arraignment. Mr. Birnbaum told the Reporter before the proceedings that he was registered with a special program of The New York State Office of Indigent Legal Services, which provides attorneys for defendants at arraignments when legal aid lawyers are not available.
Mr. Mazella was represented by Bronx attorney Francisco Serrano Walker, who said he had never met his attorney, but had been called in on the case.
Both attorneys said their clients were not flight risks, were United States citizens and had no criminal records, except for Mr. Calderon, who his attorney said had been arrested for subway turnstile jumping.
At several points during the arraignment, the attorneys disputed the claim that the incident was a home invasion, with Mr. Birnbaum at one point noting that “anyone going in was let in and let out.”
Jude Rosenblum told both attorneys that the arraignment was not the place to argue that point.
The defendants were remanded to the Suffolk County Jail to await their bail source hearing.