Hampton Bays Man Hit With Felony Unlicensed Operation Charge

Plus, man with a loud muffler gets caught with crack cocaine, charged with possession.

The following arrests were reported by the Southampton Town Police Department west of the Shinnecock Canal over the past week. A charge is an accusation. Defendants are presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

Hampton Bays

  • Rogelio Tovar, 33, of Sag Harbor, was arrested on a drunken driving charge on Sept. 30. Police said Tovar was initially stopped at around 2:30 a.m. while driving a 1999 Jeep Cherokee east near Flanders Road in Hampton Bays for failing to maintain a lane and having a broken taillight. When police investigated, they detected an odor of alcohol on his breath, blood shot eyes and was unsteady on his feet. Tovar performed poorly on a field sobriety test and failed a breathalyzer, police said. He was arrested and charged with DWI, a misdemeanor, and failing to maintain a lane, unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle and driving without proper stop lamps, all violations.
  • Joseph Grendzinski, 43, of Hampton Bays, was arrested on a drunken driving and a felony unlicensed operation charge on Sept. 27. According to police, Grendinski was driving a 2001 Dodge pickup truck on Ponquogue Avenue at around 10:30 p.m. when an officer noticed he was weaving in and out of his lane and at one point crossed over into oncoming traffic. When officers stopped Grendzinski, they said he had a strong odor of alcohol on his breath, slurred speech and was unsteady on his feet.  Police said he did poorly on a field sobriety test and blew a .18 on a breathalyzer. After further investigation, police also noted he was driving with a suspended license. Because he was charged with misdemeanor aggravated unlicensed operation in the second degree while simultaneously being charged with DWI, a misdemeanor, Grendzinski was additionally charged with first-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, a felony. Grendzinski was also charged with unsafe lane changing, and failing to keep right, both violations. His vehicle was also impounded.


  • A 20-year-old Flanders man, was arrested on Sept. 29 after allegedly stealing money from a victim — during what was described to police as an attempted drug deal — and then fleeing from police with a juvenile in the back seat. Police said the defendant was involved in a possible drug transaction on County Road 39 at around 3:30 p.m. when he stole $1,000 from a victim before hopping into a 2002 Ford van and speeding off. The defendant allegedly fled into Southampton Village Police jurisdiction and was stopped by village police officers at the intersection of Prospect Street West and Pelham Street. According to police, he had a juvenile in the vehicle with him the whole time. He’s being charged with petty larceny and endangering the welfare of a child, both misdemeanors.


  • A 40-year-old Middle Island man was arrested on Sept. 23 in Riverside, on a drug possession charge. According to police, the man was driving a 1998 Pontiac on County Road 94 at around 9 p.m. when he was stopped for excessive muffler noise. When police investigated they found that he was driving on a suspended license. The man reportedly consented to a search of his car and police said they found crack cocaine in the visor. According to police, an additional quantity of crack cocaine was found in the back seat of the police officer’s patrol vehicle after the man was taken to headquarters. The man was charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance and third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, both misdemeanors, as well as driving with a broken plate lamp and having an improper muffler and exhaust, both violations.


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