In response to concerns by some Village of Massapequa Park residents over a series of arrests in the area, an officer from the Seventh Precinct addressed the community Monday at the Massapequa Park Village Board meeting.
Sgt. David Veverka accepted an invitation from the Village Board to speak at a meeting also attended by several residents of Atlantic Avenue.
Two brothers, Bryan and Thomas Luther, were arrested on heroin possession charges in December after police said a woman passed out in their Atlantic Avenue home.
In March, Bryan Luther was accused of having a stolen police radio.
Sgt. Veverka told those in attendance that he has been deeply involved in the details of this ongoing case.
“I’ve arrested them personally six times, not including the last time,” he said. “They’re going to be away for a while this time, but I hate to say it...we’re going to arrest them again. But we’re going to make it very difficult for them to conduct business.”
Sgt Veverka accused the brothers of dealing drugs to support their own habits, and said their home is a popular place for young people to go to parties.
He said that the best way to keep the situation under control is for the police and the public to work together.
"We need you to be our eyes and ears," he said. "If you ever see something suspicious, call 911, no matter how trivial. If you see 40 suspicious things a day, then call us 40 times day. That's our job."
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Veverka also provided an overall crime report of the Massapequa Park area to residents.
He noted an increase in heroin-related arrests in light of the new-found difficulty of obtaining painkillers due to a recent crackdown.
Veverka also reported a rise in thefts from vehicles. Most often, thieves are plundering cars whose doors have been left unlocked by their careless owners, but Veverka also spoke about a new crime trend in Long Island Rail Road parking lots.
“Catalytic converters are being stolen, mostly from late-model Toyotas...probably about one a week,” he said. “They seem to be worth a lot of money in the scrap business...they cost thousands of dollars to replace.
We’re looking over the train stations, as well as the scrap yards that are taking these things in.”
Veverka also had some good news, reporting that Village residential burglaries were way down, with the last one having occurred back on October 20, 2012.
“That’s very good...probably the lowest in the county,” he said. “So far, so good with that.”