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Crime Nearby: Nonprofit Scammer Pleads Guilty to 47 Felony Charges

Syosset Patch looks at crime in the Long Island community.

The following crimes topped Patch headlines near Syosset last week:

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Commack

A former Port Jefferson Station resident and employee at the Long Island Head Injury Association, a Commack nonprofit that assists survivors of traumatic brain injuries, pleaded guilty last month to nearly 50 felony charges. According to court records online, Benjamin Achampong pleaded guilty in December after being arrested last April, when he was extradited from Georgia – where he was facing 16 identity theft charges for reportedly using stolen credit cards – to face charges in Suffolk County Court. Achampong stole the identity of individuals who were disabled with brain injuries to file false tax returns, and also cashed checks in their name. Achampong pleaded guilty to 47 charges including: two counts of first degree identity theft; 20 counts of second degree identity theft; 20 counts of first degree offering a false instrument for filing and one count of second-degree grand larceny.

Kings Park

An Islip teen was arrested for threats on a social media site to blow up the Kings Park High School gym, according to police. Steven S. Taggart, 16, was charged with second-degree falsely reporting an incident a misdemeanor, and was arraigned at First District Court in Central Islip on Saturday. According to Newsday, Taggart admitted posting on Twitter that he was preparing to blow up "The Kingdome", a nickname for the Kings Park gym. Taggart entered a plea of not guilty to the felony charge of falsely reporting an incident on school grounds. He is being charged as an adult. Taggart is expected back in court on Feb. 15.

Great Neck

A Great Neck man was charged with attempted kidnapping last week  after an incident in Manorhaven. According to police, Edward Sedaghati was charged with attempted kidnapping in the second degree, menacing in the second degree, possession of a weapon in the fourth degree and unlawful possession of marijuana after and incident in Manorhaven. Wearing a ski mask and dark clothing, Sedaghati allegedly entered a parked vehicle, brandished an imitation handgun before struggling with another man inside the car. A witness passing by assisted in the struggle, helping to hold Sedaghati until police arrived. Police report finding the fake handgun, a gravity knife, duct tape, tie wraps and a bag of marijuana at the scene.

Mineola

The Capital One Bank on Hillside Avenue in Williston Park was robbed Friday afternoon by a man who threatened use of a gun, according to police. Police say the incident occurred at 422 Hillside Ave. at about at 5:25 p.m. After the man approached a teller and presented a robbery demand note, the teller handed over an undetermined amount of cash to the thief who then fled on foot, according to police. There were five employees and three customers present in the bank at the time of the robbery. No injuries were reported. The subject is described as 30 years of age, 5’9” tall, thin build with a light complexion.

Northport

Miguel Velasquez, 20, of Northport was arrested and charged with second degree assault with intent to injure after he allegedly stabbed a man inside NorthSport Athletic Facility following a dispute. Northport Police responded to NorthSport for a report of a fight with a stabbing around 11:18 p.m. In an interview with police, the victim said that he was playing soccer and his shift was over so he went to the recreational area to get a drink where he noticed Velasquez arguing with another person before the stabbing occurred. Velasquez fled the scene and was arrested by police at a different location.

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