Police give safety tips to E.W. residents after home burglary in village

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Sgt. Stephen Grasek reminded East Williston residents to keep their doors locked during Wednesday's village board meeting following a home burglary that occurred earlier that day. (Photo by Rebecca Klar)

East Williston residents were briefed by representatives of the Nassau County Police Department during Tuesday’s village board meeting following a burglary at a house on Glenmore Street earlier that day.

The break-in, which occurred at 1:45 p.m., was likely an organized, professional theft, Sgt. Stephen Grasek told residents. An undisclosed amount of cash and jewelry was taken.

Police are looking for three Hispanic male suspects, Grasek said.

The alleged thieves are suspected to be a crew that poses as cleaning workers, Grasek said.  One man was reportedly driving the car, the other rang the doorbell and the third went around to the unlocked back door when nobody answered, Grasek said.

It is thought that there is a man named George who drives a silver minivan soliciting cleaning work, Grasek said.

According to a neighbor, the group drove away in a light blue Toyota RAV4, Grasek said.

The police are investigating.

Grasek said detectives will look at information including photos and videos taken by neighbors, as well as send in black gloves found by the scene for DNA testing.

Grasek also gave residents tips to try to limit burglary and keep themselves safe.

First and foremost, all residents should lock their doors, he said.

In this case, the back door of the house was routinely left unlocked, Grasek said.

Grasek also said residents shouldn’t trust any workers. He said it is important to follow workers around and not leave them alone.

Grasek also addressed a recent incident at the East Williston library during the meeting.

A few weeks ago, a man caused a disturbance, he said, but was  not violent.

The man, from Queens, is thought to have traveled by train or bus to the library.

A letter has been sent to him saying to stay away and if he returns the library staff will call police, Trustee Christopher Siciliano said.

Siciliano added that in addition to the panic button in the office, the library staff now has panic buttons on lanyards they can wear. In case of an emergency or another incident, the button will send an alarm that is passed to the police.

The library board is reviewing policies of other libraries and is  creating a  protocol to follow in the future, village Attorney Jeffrey Blinkoff said.

Mayor David Tanner said it is difficult to prevent an incident since it is a public building, but the board is taking further precautions.

For example, the board is looking to add a rope to block the stairs when Village Hall is closed but the library is open, Blinkoff said. This way, the librarians have a better sense of who is around and not concerned someone is lurking upstairs, Blinkoff said.

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