Featured Story

Shelter Island Police Department blotter

Those named in arrest reports or receiving police summonses have not been convicted of a crime. In court, the charges against them may be reduced or withdrawn or the defendants may be found not guilty.


Following an investigation into a domestic dispute, police arrested Joost Van Schijndel, 51, of Ridgewood, N.J. at 3:29 p.m. on June 27 and charged him with harassment in the 2nd degree. He was processed, virtually arraigned and released on his own recognizance. Mr. Schijndel was instructed to return to Justice Court at a later date. An order of protection was issued on behalf of the alleged victim.


A bay constable issued four tickets on June 27 and 28. John Kerge of Massapequa was charged with operating a jet ski without a safety certificate in Dering Harbor; Singh Lovepreet of South Richmond, N.Y. was given a summons for not having a throwable lifesaving device on board at Mashomack Point; Jay Genzer of Livingston, N.J. had no sound producing device at Smith’s Cove; and Martin Marin of Long Island City had undersized porgies off Reel Point.

Police conducted traffic stops and distracted driving and radar enforcement on June 23, 24, 25, 27, 28 and 29 in the Heights, South Ferry, the Center, West Neck, Menantic and Cartwright, resulting in eight warnings.

Thirty-one parking tickets were issued.


Linda L. McCarthy of Shelter Island reported a minor accident on June 25 in the Heights. When she returned to her vehicle, which was parked on Grand Avenue, she noticed the driver’s-side mirror had been damaged by an unknown passing vehicle.

Other reports

An officer on patrol on Ram Island on June 23 saw a vehicle parked on the beach. The occupants were told that vehicles were not permitted to access the beach from that location and were told about other locations where they could park.

A case of identity theft was reported on June 23; a complaint about ongoing harassment involving a cyclist was also logged that day.

Also on the 23rd, an anonymous caller reported a person driving erratically in Hay Beach, making wide turns and swerving. The driver was located and explained being exhausted from a hot day at work and admitted may have swerved a few times on the way home. There was no sign of intoxication.

On that day, another caller reported a man walking around a Tarkettle property and shoreline. The police also assisted the Riverhead Police Department in a search for a suspect, and notified the Highway Department to remove a downed tree blocking a Shorewood road.

An individual came into Police Headquarters on June 24 to pursue criminal charges regarding a prior domestic dispute.

Police received a complaint from a Menantic caller on the 24th about dust and noise from cutting concrete at a construction site. Police referred the caller to the Building Department but the caller also wanted the complaint lodged with the police.

Also on the 24th, police were told a vehicle had been parked for several days in the Center and might have been abandoned. The owner was contacted and his daughter will move the car.

An ongoing dispute over construction at a neighbor’s house was reported by a Menantic caller.

Several days later, the caller inquired about the town’s noise ordinance and noted that noise and debris from the site had been ongoing for six months.

An “unskilled” driver, parked in the Center, who almost hit another car, was reported anonymously in the Center on June 24. The vehicle was gone when police arrived.

Police also received an anonymous call about a woman possibly intoxicated who was having trouble getting into her vehicle in the Heights. She was located in her parked vehicle and no problems were noted.

A brush fire at the Recycling Center was noted on June 25; the Shelter Island Fire Department (SIFD) and Highway Department put it out. A smoldering mulch fire in Menantic was watered down by the SIFD on that day.

A caller told police that a Center neighbor had been using a chainsaw for several days and the noise was disturbing their dinners outside. The caller was advised about the town’s noise ordinance.

The Police Department assisted the U.S. Coast Guard in trying to locate a distress call in the area of Shelter Island Sound on June 26; no boats were located.

On June 26, a West Neck woman told police, for information purposes, that when she turned on the water main after being away, she noticed an unknown person had turned on her outside shower.

Also on the 26th, police were told anonymously about a business possibly operating illegally at Crescent Beach. An officer interviewed the owner who had a town business permit. Responding to a report of a vehicle on a Ram Island beach, an officer interviewed the driver who had a beach driving permit.

On a number of occasions on June 26, 27 and 28, officers conducted camping and beach checks at Hay Beach, Silver Beach, Bootleggers Alley and on Ram Island, noting the number of people, vehicles parked and any signs of camping. They also checked on conformance with Environmental Conservation Laws regarding fishing.

On patrol on June 26, an officer saw a vehicle on a Ram Island beach. The owner had a valid beach vehicle permit but was told that access to public beaches was limited to portions of adjacent town landings that were not otherwise restricted. He was advised to re-enter through the Menhaden Lane town landing.

Also on the 26th, a caller reported that 12 people were aboard a pontoon in Crab Creek; the boat was gone when police arrived. Police were also told that there were open containers in a vehicle on a South Ferry boat.

An officer located the vehicle on West Neck and Shore roads but found no evidence of open or any other containers.

Police were told about firecrackers or gunshots being heard in West Neck; the area was searched with negative results.

On June 27, an officer noticed a boat with an expired validation sticker in Montclair. The operator said she had made several unsuccessful attempts to renew the registration through the DMV’s website.

Police investigated a complaint about possible elder abuse in Hay Beach on June 27. Also on that day, police advised two people — a cyclist and a walker — to avoid each other in the future.

An officer also responded to a call about groups on Crescent Beach not practicing social distancing and observed small groups spread out along the beach and no problems.

Police received a complaint on the 27th about people riding bikes, three abreast, almost daily on New York Avenue. A caller reported a violation of NYS Executive Order 202 – employees at a Heights business who were not wearing face masks. The owner was contacted.

Two suspicious vehicles in Silver Beach were called in on June 27; an officer found they were legally parked.

On June 28, an anonymous caller told police people were skeet shooting on Ram Island opposite an osprey’s nest. Police found no violations but advised them to use caution due to boat traffic in the area.

An officer on patrol on the 28th noticed several illegally anchored boats in West Neck Harbor and Bay and advised the operators to move to appropriate anchorages. Two boats outside designated anchorages were also seen off Mashomack on June 29 and the owners notified.

Police received a complaint about loud noise from a dirt bike in the Center on June 29; the owner said he had taken the muffler off but would re-attach it.

The same day, an officer noticed a vehicle on the beach at Hay Beach. The owner was not aware that a town permit was required and was told that non-resident permits were available at Town Hall.


The SIFD responded to three fire alarms in Dering Harbor, the Heights and Silver Beach on June 24, 25 and 26. There was no smoke at one residence and the owner was notified; in the second; the SIFD was unable to gain entrance but checked the exterior with a thermal camera, finding no sign of fire. The third was activated by dust caused by a worker cutting sheetrock.

A carbon monoxide alarm was set off in Longview on June 25 but a CO detector showed negative results.

An officer responded to a residential alarm in a Silver Beach home under renovation on June 27; the interior was searched with no sign of any criminal activity.

Animal reports

Officers responded to three separate reports of dogs on Wades Beach and advised the owners of the rules regarding dogs on Island beaches from Memorial Day to Labor Day.

A caller told police a dog was chasing deer in the Center; the area was searched with negative results. Two dogs were reported in the Center; an officer contacted the owner who had been looking for them.

A dog at large on Ram Island had been returned to its owner when police arrived. Another dog was reported loose in the Heights but was gone when police arrived.

An officer searched an area on Ram Island unsuccessfully for a dog at large. The owner of a dog loose in West Neck was contacted by police and retrieved it.

Police searched for a missing dog in Tarkettle, which later returned home to its owner.

Two small dogs at large in Cartwright were searched for without results.

Police assisted a Cartwright caller to lift her lame dog into a vehicle that would take the dog to the vet.

Three reports about ospreys were received. One, injured on a roadway in Westmoreland, was taken to a veterinarian; the second, also on a Westmoreland road, was a fledgling in good condition in the road.

The caller brought his bucket truck, lifted the officer and the osprey up to the nest so that the bird could be reunited with its family.

An osprey fledgling in the Heights was rescued by an officer and the caller; they freed the bird from a fishing line wrapped around its talon and wings.

An orphaned turkey chick was reported in the Center and transported by police to the Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Rehabilitation Center. An injured young house finch was taken to an avian vet.

An officer responded to a call about an injured squirrel hit by a vehicle in the Center; the area was searched unsuccessfully. Sick raccoons reported in Hay Beach could not be located.

An officer freed an owl trapped in a soccer net in Hay Beach. An injured diamondback terrapin in Hay Beach with a badly fractured spine was taken by police to a vet for euthanasia.

An injured rabbit in Menantic and an injured fledgling barn swallow in Dering Harbor were transported to the Evelyn Alexander Wildlife Rescue Center.

A caller said a bat was possibly in a Silver Beach house but declined an officer’s offer to remove it.

Aided cases

Shelter Island Emergency Medical Service teams transported six people to Eastern Long Island Hospital on June 23, 24, 25 and 26. Another person was taken by helicopter to Stony Brook University Hospital on June 27.