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31 full-time attorneys prosecute criminal cases in the Rockland County District Attorney's Office.

Profiles In Prosecution

Photo of Amanda Doty

Amanda Doty,
Assistant District Attorney
Community Prosecutor for Clarkstown and Wesley Hills

Since joining the Rockland County District Attorney's Office in July, 2008, Amanda Doty has earned a reputation as a tough prosecutor.

A native of Fairfield County, Connecticut, Ms. Doty attended Georgetown University Law Center. Before signing-on with the Zugibe Administration, Doty worked in private practice in Manhattan, specializing in commercial litigation.

As a Community Prosecutor serving Clarkstown and Wesley Hills, Ms. Doty continues to build and strengthen relationships with local residents. By engaging directly with the community, prosecutors work with law enforcement, business leaders, educators and residents to solve unique problems, prevent crime and improve overall safety.

Spotlight On Conviction

On April 13th, the District Attorney's office secured a conviction against Jairo Aguirre of Weehawken, New Jersey for the repeated sexual molestation of a ten-year-old boy in 2008.

Aguirre was sentenced on June 17th to ten years to life in state prison on the top count of Predatory Sexual Assault Against a Child, a class "A-2" Felony. The defendant, a former resident of Orangetown, preyed on the young victim several times during a five-month period. Aguirre is not eligible for parole until 2020. If released at that time, he will be required to register as a sex offender in New York State. The case was prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Gunning and Senior Assistant District Attorney Jennifer Parietti.

For more information about recent convictions, see our Press Releases page.

Major Cases File: "Operation Double Down"

Photo of a male and female suspect

On June 10th, District Attorney Zugibe announced the arrest of three individuals on charges stemming from the operation of an illegal gambling, sports betting and loan sharking enterprise closely controlled by organized crime. The highly-sophisticated operation in Rockland County and elsewhere booked hundreds of thousands of dollars in wagers each month on professional basketball, football, baseball, hockey and other sporting events. Charged in the operation were 70-year-old Frank John Fea of Upper Saddle River, New Jersey, 44-year-old Alfred Joseph Fea of Middletown, and his wife, 40-year-old Tracey Fea, a/k/a Tracey Kosierowski, also of Middletown. The investigation leading to the arrests began in late 2008 with information developed by the Rockland County Intelligence Center.

To learn more about recent prosecutions, see our Press Releases page.

Welcome to the first e-newsletter from Rockland County District Attorney Thomas Zugibe. This newsletter was developed to keep you up-to-date on our efforts to enhance your quality of life through robust law enforcement and successful prosecution.

We hope you find this information useful and invite you to visit our website for more about our office, Community Prosecution efforts, victim services and answers to frequently asked questions.
 
Inaugural issue's highlights:

Special Victims Center Nears Completion

Photo of people standing in front of Special Victims CenterThere is no summer vacation for the volunteer work crews at the site of the "Spirit of Rockland" Special Victims Center in Suffern. The 3,000-square foot facility on the campus of Good Samaritan Hospital will provide proper care and support to persons who, by personal circumstance or the nature of the crime, have "special needs."

With various labor groups working on sheetrock, painting, lighting and electrical details, the SVC is on-schedule to open this fall. The project has used some $2,000 in asset forfeiture money and a $59,000 grant from the American Bar Association for technical equipment.

Once the build-out is complete, the Special Victims Center will serve as a "one stop" facility for the county's most vulnerable population, from the moment they become a victim through the successful prosecution of the offender and beyond.

Adorning exam room walls, waiting areas and corridors of the SVC will be numerous paintings and murals generously donated by DiDiArt Angels of New York City. DiDiArt is a nonprofit group of talented volunteer artists who beautify walls and ceilings with colorful artwork specially crafted for hospitals, pediatric emergency rooms, senior housing, schools and other institutions. A splash of color during an otherwise dark time for our special crime victims will help transform the experience from cold and clinical to comforting and engaging. Susan Langone Incorporated of Piermont and New York City has crafted the overall "look and feel" of the SVC. Susan has graciously donated her interior design expertise to the project. The "Spirit of Rockland" Special Victims Center is being constructed free of charge, at no cost to local taxpayers. In addition, Good Samaritan Hospital is providing rent-free use of space.

District Attorney Zugibe wishes to thank the dozens of companies, professional organizations and tradesmen and women who have donated funds, materials, time and hard work for the project. For more information on the SVC, visit the Special Victims Unit page on our website.

"Lily" To Serve As The Tri-State Area's First District Attorney Therapy Dog, Helping Victims Cope While Enhancing Prosecutions

Photo of Lily the therapy dog, a yellow labrador retrieverThe staff of the Rockland County District Attorney's Office is growing by one this summer with the arrival of "Lily the Therapy Dog."

The twelve-month-old, pure-bred Labrador Retriever will provide a unique kind of support, peace and security to victims of abuse and/or violent crime and others who are involved in the criminal justice system.

Lily's service in Rockland County is another tool in the District Attorney's arsenal to hold criminals accountable. The innovative program will successfully enhance criminal prosecutions by providing a positive, medicinal experience for those struggling as victims. In addition, Lily's comforting presence will lead to a better quality of witnesses and statements given in criminal prosecutions.

YPI Moves To Spring Valley

Photo of 4 teenagersThe Rockland County District Attorney's Youth and Police Initiative (YPI) moves to Spring Valley this fall. The first YPI session of the 2010-11 academic year starts in September and will draw about 15 teenagers from local youth groups in Ramapo. The new class will partner prosecutors from the District Attorney's office, officers from the Spring Valley Police Department and community-based youth organizations.

The Zugibe Administration partnered with the Haverstraw Police Department and the North Rockland Central School District in mid-2009 to implement YPI. Since then, the successful mentoring program has graduated 63 students in the North Rockland and Nyack public school districts. A total of thirty police officers from the Haverstraw and Orangetown police departments have taken part.

YPI is designed to reduce and prevent crime among Rockland County's younger population. During the course of several weeks, teens and police officers meet, share experiences and form long-term bonds. Through structured conversation and trust-building activities, both students and law enforcement officers are able to tear down stereotypes, develop mutual respect and spark long-term relationships.

The program brings together at-risk teens with local police officers in an effort to enhance the officers and prosecutors understanding of the beliefs, values, and experiences of local youth, while ensuring that youth develop a genuine regard for the challenges that cops face on the job.

VATI – A Successful Beginning

The Rockland County District Attorney's new VATI program is off to a solid start. Since its launch in 2009, several returning service members facing nonviolent criminal charges have been identified, screened and linked with veteran-specific substance abuse and mental health treatment programs as alternatives to jail time.

The goal of the VATI program is to reduce criminal behavior and rearrest rates, while helping veterans returning from active duty in Iraq and/or Afghanistan turn their lives around.

Rockland County Veterans Service Agency Director Jerry Donnellan says the VATI initiative is being looked to as a model by other local governments.

Because an existing criminal justice infrastructure already exists, Rockland County's VATI program comes with little or no cost. It will save taxpayers money, because enrolling veterans in treatment programs costs significantly less than housing them in jail and will free up prison beds for more dangerous criminals.

For more information on the Rockland County District Attorney's VATI program, call (845) 638-5683 or visit our VATI page.

Home Improvement Contractors: Choosing The Right One

It's the time of year for adding a screened porch or remodeling the kitchen. With several recent prosecutions of crooked home improvement contractors, the Rockland County District Attorney's Office offers a few tips to help make sure you don't become a victim of your handyman.

  • Make sure the contractor is licensed by contacting the Rockland County Department of Consumer Protection.
  • Never pay a home remodeler for the entire job in advance and avoid paying in cash whenever possible.
  • Ask the contractor for local references and find out if these customers were satisfied with the contractor's work. If possible, visit and inspect their completed projects.
  • Contact the Rockland County Department of Consumer Protection to learn how long a contractor has been in business and if the firm has been responsive to any complaints filed with the agency or the Better Business Bureau.
  • Solicit at least two or three bids from prospective contractors, based upon the same building specifications, materials, labor and time needed to complete the project.
  • Ask the contractor if the company is insured against claims covering worker's compensation, property damage, and personal liability in case of accidents. Then call to verify the contractor's insurance coverage after obtaining the name of the carrier and agency.
  • Make sure you have a written agreement before beginning any home improvement project. (This contract should include precise terms regarding materials to be used, finishing touches, homeowner's right to inspect/approve the work, etc.).
  • Contact the Rockland County District Attorney's Office immediately if criminality is suspected.

In 2010 alone, the Special Investigations Unit of the Office of the District Attorney has prosecuted at least six home improvement contractors accused of swindling nearly $100,000 from customers.