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07/30/14 7:15pm
Investigators at the scene of a fatal skydiving accident at Skydive Long Island in Calverton Wednesday evening. (Credit: Grant Parpan)

Investigators at the scene of a fatal skydiving accident at Skydive Long Island in Calverton Wednesday evening. (Credit: Grant Parpan)

Update: The Skydive Long Island instructor critically injured during a tandem jump accident that killed a student Wednesday afternoon is in critical but stable condition, Riverhead Town police said.

The instructor was identified by police as Christopher Scott, 28, of Sound Beach. He was airlifted from Calverton to Stony Brook University Hospital.

According to a LinkdIn online profile, Mr. Scott has been an instructor at SkyDive Long Island since March 2012.

The correction officer killed in the accident, Gary Messina of Medford, who would have been 26 today, died at the scene.

His father, Carl Messina, a former Newsday pressman, told the newspaper Thursday his son went skydiving every year around his birthday for the past seven or eight years.

“He was a man’s man,” the father told Newsday, “an inspiration to all who knew him.”

This is the first fatality reported at Skydive Long Island in Calverton, though a death was reported at the company’s East Moriches location in 1989.

Skydive Long Island was open for business Thursday.

Initial story: A New York City correction officer was killed one day before his birthday and another man was critically injured during a skydiving accident at Skydive Long Island in Calverton Wednesday afternoon, officials said.

Federal authorities said the accident happened at 4:10 p.m.

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Featured Story
07/29/14 8:10pm
07/29/2014 8:10 PM
This car was involved in Tuesday's fatal crash near the Riverside jail. (Credit: Stringer News Service photos)

This car was involved in Tuesday’s fatal crash near the Riverside jail. (Credit: Stringer News Service)

On Wednesday morning, New York State police identified the woman in a Tuesday afternoon fatal car crash as 76-year-old Saundra Highland of Riverside.

According to police, Ms. Highland’s 2010 Ford was traveling southbound on Nugent Drive just west of the Riverside jail when she “drifted into the center median and struck a tree.”

Investigators said on Tuesday that the crash, which occurred shortly before 3:30 p.m., does not appear to be suspicious and no other car was involved in the accident.

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07/28/14 2:33pm
07/28/2014 2:33 PM

SH_CopsA Calverton woman showed up for her probation meeting carrying drugs, and now faces additional charges, according to Southampton Town Police.

Sheila Amodeo, 41, had reported to the Suffolk County Probation Office at the county center for a scheduled visit when a search — as required due to her probation — turned up three bags of white powder, numerous empty wrappers and a small straw that were in her purse, according to police.

Ms. Amodeo admitted to it being heroin, police said.

She was charged with seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance July 22 on Center Drive South in Riverside.

07/27/14 4:48pm
07/27/2014 4:48 PM

A 40-year-old Riverhead woman was arrested Sunday by Southampton Town police on a bench warrant for failure to pay a fine in connection with a prior drug possession charge, according to a press release.

Melody Pampena was arrested at around 1:45 a.m. in Riverside after she was caught on an active bench warrant issued by Southampton Town Justice Court for failing to pay a fine for a seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance charge, police said.

Ms. Pampena was held at police headquarters for arraignment.