Farmingdale (WALK) - You have to stoop pretty low to steal from the dead, but that's the charge today against three young people.
The trio was nabbed after someone called 911 to report that bronze vases were begin stolen off graves at Pinelawn Cemetery in Farmingdale yesterday. Officers who answered the call just after 12 noon saw two men in a white Volkswagen Beetle that had been spotted during a previous theft at the same cemetery. Police gave chase but the car evaded them by driving through a locked metal gate, authorities say.
Officers pursued the car to an intersection in Massapequa and arrested the two people inside after the vehicle stopped. The suspects are identified as Nicholas Giambalvo, 27, and Max Schneider, 24, both of Dix Hills.
A third suspect was later arrested as well. Elizabeth Dono of North Babylon owns the Volkswagen, according to police.
Detectives say the bronze vases that were stolen have a combined value of a staggering $53,000. Metal thefts have become increasingly common in recent years, because of the rising value of scrap metal
The three suspects face charges in another case as well. Police believe they stole copper pipes from a vacant home on Kime Avenue in North Babylon back in December.
The trio are scheduled to be arraigned today at First District Court in Central Islip.
Anyone who witnessed the thefts or may have information that can help detectives is asked to contact the First Squad at (631) 854-8152 or call anonymously to Suffolk Crime Stoppers at (800) 220-TIPS.
Photo: Jim Henderson