Cache of guns, ammo found at Great Neck surgeon’s home

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Westchester County District Attorney Anthony Scarpino Jr., left, with Tuckahoe Police Chief John Costanzo. The weapons gathered had been found after a search warrant on Bonanno's vehicle and homes in Great Neck and Mount Pleasant. (Photo courtesy of Westchester County District Attorney's Office)

A Great Neck resident and plastic surgeon is facing criminal weapon possession charges after a collection of guns and ammunition found in his homes and vehicle was seized by police in Westchester County on Aug. 13. 

The surgeon, Matthew Bonanno, who has an office in Lake Success, had been arrested on Aug. 12, after stumbling out of the Growler’s Beer Bistro in Tuckahoe in Westchester County, according to the Westchester County district attorney’s office. 

An anonymous source had called police after hearing Bonanno make threats against his estranged wife and her family, the district attorney’s office said. Police found him carrying an illegal handgun at the scene, according to the district attorney. 

Tuckahoe police searched his car and found five assault rifles with high-capacity magazines, three handguns, 29 high-capacity loaded magazines, over 1,600 rounds of ammunition, and various other weapons, including four brass knuckles, multiple “military-style” knives, and a stun gun, the district attorney’s office said. Body armor and a ballistic helmet were also found.

Village police later obtained a search warrant for Bonanno’s Great Neck home, where they found what the district attorney’s office referred to as “another large cache of assault rifles, shotgun, handguns, high-capacity magazines, body armor, hundreds of rounds ammunition, smoke grenades and other weapons.” These were turned over to Nassau County police.

Additionally, three illegal handguns were found at Bonanno’s second residence in Mount Pleasant, also in Westchester County, the district attorney’s office said.

Bonanno was remanded without bail at his arraignment Aug. 13 by Village Justice David O. Fuller, and charged with nine counts of second-degree criminal possession of a deadly weapon and 32 total counts of third-degree criminal possession of a deadly weapon.

Upon his second appearance in court on Tuesday, his defense attorney, Paul Gentile, petitioned County Court to make a bail application, insisting that his client is being held  in violation of the law. Gentile referred to a law that there must be a preliminary hearing or grand jury action taken by the district attorney within 120 hours of a suspect’s arrest, or within five days or 144 hours if there is a weekend, as in Bonanno’s case. 

The evidence against Bonanno will be heard by a grand jury, according to Westchester news outlet Lohud.

Bonanno is set to appear in Tuckahoe Village Court for the bail application hearing Wednesday. 

According to U.S. News & World Report, Bonanno is licensed to practice in New York and Florida, with a Connecticut medical license having expired in 2016.  He has admitting privileges to the New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai and Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City. 

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