Robert L. Langley Jr.

Sheriff of Putnam County

News Release

PUTNAM SHERIFF’S DEPARTMENT NARCOTICS UNIT ARRESTS – SUMMER 2019

Putnam County Sheriff Robert L. Langley Jr. reports several Narcotics Enforcement Unit (NEU) arrests recorded during this past summer. On July 16, 2019, members of the Sheriff’s Narcotics Enforcement Unit (NEU) were patrolling in the Town of Carmel, when they observed a vehicle commit a traffic violation. The NEU members initiated a traffic stop of the vehicle. A subsequent investigation revealed that the vehicle’s driver, Michael Scauzillo, age 51, of Mahopac, had a suspended driver’s license and was in possession of a quantity of alleged Heroin. Mr. Scauzillo was placed under arrest and charged with one misdemeanor count of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Seventh Degree and one misdemeanor count of Aggravated Unlicensed Operation in the Third Degree. The defendant was processed and released on his own recognizance. The defendant is scheduled to appear in the Town of Carmel Justice Court.

In November of 2018, the Sheriff’s Department Narcotics Enforcement Unit (NEU) developed information that Rafael Veras-Molina, age 28, of Orlando, Florida, who at the time was temporarily residing in Danbury, Ct, was involved in the sale of Crack-Cocaine and Heroin within Putnam County. On at least two occasions, NEU members were able to make contact with Mr. Veras-Molina and arrange for the purchase of Crack-Cocaine and Heroin. In May of 2019, Mr. Veras-Molina returned to Florida and an arrest warrant was signed by the Honorable Justice Gregory Folchetti of the Town of Southeast Justice Court for his arrest.

On July 16, 2019 the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office was contacted by authorities in Florida who advised that Veras-Molina was attempting a firearms transaction in the Orlando, Florida area when his wanted status was discovered. Putnam County NEU members contacted the Orange County (FL) Sheriff’s Office and with their assistance the suspect was apprehended. On August 6, 2019, members of the NEU traveled to Orlando, Florida and took Mr. Veras-Molina into custody, following extradition procedures. Mr. Veras-Molina was brought back to New York, where he was charged with two counts of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree (Class B Felony), and two counts of Criminal Sale of a Controlled Substance in the Third Degree (Class B Felony). Mr. Veras-Molina was arraigned by the Honorable Justice Richard Vercollone of the Town of Southeast Justice Court. Justice Vercollone remanded Mr. Veras-Molina to the Putnam County Correctional Facility in lieu of $5,000.00 cash-bail/ $10,000.00 bail-bond.

On July 19, 2019, NEU members observed a vehicle commit a traffic violation on State Route 9, in the Town of Philipstown. NEU members stopped the vehicle. A subsequent investigation revealed that the vehicle’s driver, Richard Wulfhop, age 33, of Putnam Valley, was in possession of an item used for intravenous drug use, narcotics packaging materials, and three glassine envelopes containing alleged Heroin. Mr. Wulfhop was arrested and charged with one misdemeanor count of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Seventh Degree, one misdemeanor count of Criminal Possession of a Hypodermic Instrument, and one misdemeanor count of Aggravated Unlicensed Operation of a Motor Vehicle in the Second Degree. In addition, Mr. Wulfhop had four outstanding warrants for his arrest: one from the Town of Kent, one from New York State Police Cortlandt, and one from White Plains, each stemming from failure to appear on Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Seventh Degree charges. The fourth warrant was from the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, for Aggravated Unlicensed Operation of a Motor Vehicle in the Second Degree. Mr. Wulfhop was arraigned in the Town of Philipstown Justice Court, before the Honorable Justice C. Linson, who remanded Mr. Wufhop to the Putnam County Correctional Facility in lieu of $5,000.00 cash-bail/$7,500.00 bail-bond.

On July 26, 2019, NEU members were patrolling in the Mahopac area, of the Town of Carmel, when they observed a vehicle commit a traffic violation. The NEU members initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle. A subsequent investigation revealed that the vehicle’s driver, Jay Seton, age 36, of Shrub Oak, had a suspended driver’s license. The investigation also revealed that a passenger of the vehicle, Steven Vukaj, age 32, of Carmel, was in possession of a quantity of alleged Heroin. Mr. Seton was placed under arrest and charged with one misdemeanor count of Aggravated Unlicensed Operation in the Third Degree. Mr. Vukaj was placed under arrest and charged with Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Seventh Degree (Class A Misdemeanor). Both defendants were processed and released on their own recognizance. Both defendants are scheduled to appear in the Town of Carmel Justice Court.

On July 31, 2019, NEU members observed a vehicle commit a traffic violation in the Town of Southeast. NEU members initiated a traffic stop on the vehicle. A subsequent investigation revealed that Donald Mittan, age 44, of Scarsdale, was in possession of a quantity of alleged Heroin. Mr. Mittan was placed under arrest for Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Seventh Degree (Class A Misdemeanor). Mr. Mittan was charged and issued an appearance ticket returnable to the Town of Southeast Justice Court.

On August 1, 2019, NEU members were patrolling a business parking lot, located in the Town of Putnam Valley. NEU members observed suspicious activity occurring in an occupied vehicle parked in the parking lot. NEU members approached the vehicle and observed the occupants snorting a substance through a straw and passing the substance between them. A further investigation revealed that the three occupants of the vehicle were in possession of alleged cocaine. Mohammed Abdelhamid, age 24, and Nicole Eng, age 24, both from New York City, were arrested and charged with Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Seventh Degree ( Class A Misdemeanor). Fady Basta, age 28, also from New York City, was arrested and charged with a felony count of Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Fifth Degree. In addition, Mr. Basta was found to be in possession of alleged marijuana. Mr. Basta was additionally charged with Unlawful Possession of Marijuana. Ms. Eng and Mr. Abdelhamid were processed and released on appearance tickets, after each posted $100.00 bail. Mr. Basta was arraigned in the Town of Carmel Justice Court, by the Honorable Justice Thomas Jacobellis. Justice Jacobellis remanded Mr. Basta to the Putnam County Correctional Facility on $1,000.00 cash-bail/$2,000.00 bail-bond.

On August 13, 2019, NEU members arrested Benlynx Garcia, age 36, of Brewster (Putnam Lake), at the Town of Patterson Justice Court, on an outstanding Bench Warrant, from January 2017, out of the Town of Carmel Justice Court. The warrant stemmed from an arrest in March of 2015, where Garcia was found to be in possession of a quantity of alleged Xanax. Ms. Garcia was arraigned on the Bench Warrant by the Honorable Justice Anthony R. Mole, on behalf of the Town of Carmel Justice Court. Justice Mole remanded Ms. Garcia to the Putnam County Correctional Facility on $500.00 cash-bail/$1,000.00 bail-bond.

On August 29, 2019, NEU members were investigating a fight in progress call, which resulted in damage to another’s vehicle. An investigation revealed that two men were involved in a physical altercation in front of 49 Main Street in the Village of Brewster at approx. 10:40 PM. Henry Castro, age 43 of Brewster, NY was charged with (1) one count of Criminal Mischief in the 4th Degree, after recklessly damaging a vehicle in an amount exceeding $250.00.Castro was processed at the Putnam County Correctional Facility and released with an appearance ticket, after posting $100.00 cash bail. He has a return court date in the Village of Brewster court on September 30, 2019.