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Shelter Island Police Department blotter: April 29-May 5

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 In court, the charges against them may be reduced or withdrawn or the defendants may be found not guilty.

Within the past two months, the Shelter Island Police Department has investigated two deaths related to apparent drug overdoses. In the most recent case, on April 27 at about 4:09 p.m., police responded to a report of a Shelter Island man at his Shelter Island home unconscious and not breathing. Officers found him in the bathroom where he had succumbed to an apparent drug overdose of fentanyl.

According to Detective/Sergeant Jack Thilberg, the Shelter Island Police, in conjunction with the Suffolk County Medical Examiner’s Office, are investigating the circumstances of the death; the investigation remains open.


Nelson Hocker of Dix Hills was exiting a South Ferry boat on April 24 when he hit a wooden guardrail on the off-ramp, causing damage estimated at over $1,000 to the passenger-side front of the vehicle. There were no injuries and no property damage.


On May 2 and 3, police conducted four traffic stops in the Center and Cartwright, resulting in one warning.

A caller reported two vehicles driving erratically in Cartwright on April 27. An officer located one driver who said she had difficulty locating an address for a job; a second vehicle was driven by a photographer following her to the job site.

A dog wandering on a Center roadway was reported on April 27; an officer contacted the owner who retrieved the dog.

While on patrol on that day, an officer saw an open door in the Heights. He searched the interior of the residence, found no signs of criminal activity and secured the door.

On April 28, a dog at large was reported in West Neck. An officer responded but was notified by a passerby that the owner had already retrieved the dog. The same day, a caller told police a vehicle was swerving and failing to stay in lane in Hay Beach. The driver was not located.

Four alarms were activated on April 28 in Menantic, April 29 in Westmoreland and two on April 30 in the Heights and the Center. The first was an audible carbon monoxide alarm reported by a neighbor. Police found a CO detector in the basement that was subsequently checked out by the Shelter Island Fire Department with negative results. The second was a residential alarm set off by a real estate agent with an incorrect code. The third was caused by a system malfunction in the Sacristy of Our Lady of the Isle, and also on the 30th, a residential alarm set off at a laundry room door was not an issue; the owner was on the scene.

On April 30, a North Ferry employee informed police that the driver of a vehicle had left the ferry and had failed to pay. An officer canvassed the area with no results. The employee said he didn’t want to pursue charges at this time and believed the driver would be taking the ferry back to Greenport later that day.

A dog at large in Hay Beach was reported on the 30th; the area was searched with negative results.

A caller told police there was an open fire hydrant in Dering Harbor on that date; the Suffolk County Water Authority was testing the water system.

A scam phone call purporting to be from Chase Bank was reported to police on April 30. The caller said he didn’t provide any pertinent information and was advised to register the complaint with the town’s identity theft website and to notify the bank.

An open door was reported at a Silver Beach residence on April 30; in a police search of the home, there was no sign of any criminal activity.

On May 1, a caller complained about a document issue with an employee; an officer explained the problem was not a violation of the law.

A caller told police on May 1 that it was not possible to get a dog inside the house because it was playing with another dog. An officer assisted in bringing the dog inside; the other unknown dog returned home.

A vehicle was reported parked on a public beach in Hay Beach on May 1. The driver was advised to relocate to a parking area and to check the town code regarding permitting for vehicles on the beach.

Police were told about an open burning in a Hay Beach backyard on May 1. A small fire had been extinguished when an officer arrived and the owner was notified that if he planned on burning brush, he would need a town permit.

An injured groundhog was reported in Menantic on May 1; police put the animal down. On the 2nd, police were notified that a large brown turtle was in a Center backyard. The turtle was moved to a safe location without incident. That same day, an officer helped a caller free two wild turkeys that were trapped inside a fenced area in the Center.

An officer spoke to the owner of a dog reported by a caller to be loose in the Center on May 3. The owner explained that the dog had escaped a fenced-in area of the yard and had since returned home; he will take care of the problem.

In other incidents, police conducted DARE (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) classes for the 8th grade; attended training at the Police Department and in Westhampton;, unlocked the door to a residence and to two vehicles with the keys inside; responded to two false 911 calls; assisted with the COVID-19 vaccination program at the school; and performed court duty.


On April 29, a Shelter Island Emergency Medical Services team transported one case to Eastern Long Island Hospital.