04/11/13 1:45pm
04/11/2013 1:45 PM

The Aquebogue man involved in a fatal car crash that killed two men in Nassau County last month was arraigned on a grand jury indictment for aggravated vehicular homicide, manslaughter, and other felony charges Thursday morning, prosecutors said.

ROBERT BEODEKER

ROBERT BEODEKER

Robert Beodeker, 50, who is also well-known in the North Fork’s performing arts community, was driving south on the Meadowbrook Parkway about 12:40 p.m. on March 4 when he hit a disabled Nissan Maxima and two pedestrians who were tending to the sedan in the road’s shoulder, police have said.

The two victims, John Elder, 76, of Freeport and Edward Ross, 65, of North Bellmore died at the scene.

Mr. Beodeker — an associate dean of student services at Suffolk County Community College — was charged with aggravated vehicular homicide, first-degree vehicular manslaughter, several aggravated unlicensed driving counts, unlawful possession of a hypodermic instrument and a slew of other felony and misdemeanor charges, according to the indictment.

Mr. Beodeker was originally only charged with reckless driving after the accident, but the charges were later upgraded after  tests revealed his blood contained .17 percent of methamphetamine and .12 percent of amphetamine at the time of the crash, according to a criminal complaint.

During his initial arraignment Mr. Beodeker told the court that he had taken Ambien and depression medication before the crash, according to a News12 report.

Richard Wool, Mr. Beodeker’s attorney, could not be reached for comment.

In a previous interview with the News-Review, Mr. Wool said his client was “very upset.”

“Based on that fact that, whether there’s a criminal charge or no criminal charges he’s very upset that two people are not alive today,” Mr. Wool said. “But this is all new to him. He’s never been arrested, never mind convicted.”

He is facing up to 25 years in prison if convicted of the top charge.

Mr. Beodeker remains held on $500,000 cash bail or $1 million bond, court officials said.

He is due back in court on April 30.

psquire@timesreview.com

03/15/13 2:25pm
03/15/2013 2:25 PM
Aquebogue man charged in Meadowbrook crash

GOOGLE MAPS | The fatal crash March 4 reportedly happened just south of the Southern State Parkway.

A 5o-year-old Aquebogue man involved in a double fatal crash in Nassau County earlier this month was re-arrested Monday and is facing upgraded charges after blood tests revealed he was impaired by drugs at the time of the crash, authorities said.

ROBERT BEODEKER

ROBERT BEODEKER

Robert Beodeker, who was initially charged with reckless driving and aggravated driving without a license after the March 4 Meadowbrook Parkway crash, had been free on $1,000 bail.

He is now facing aggravated vehicular manslaughter, two counts of second-degree vehicular manslaughter, two counts of criminally negligent homicide and driving while ability impaired by drugs, according to a criminal complaint.

He faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted of the top charge.

He was arraigned Friday in First District Court in Hempstead, where he pleaded not guilty to the new charges and was ordered held on $1 million bond or $500,000 cash bail, said a spokesman for Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice.

The complaint states his blood contained .17 percent of methamphetamine and .12 percent of amphetamine at the time of the crash.

Police said he consented to a blood test.

Mr. Beodeker’s lawyer, N. Richard Wool of Plainview, said prosecutors “had no lab report [at the arraignment] to show that he did anything wrong.”

“He’s a good guy,” Mr. Wool said in an interview. “Obviously, he’s been dean of students at Suffolk Community for 20 years. He’s a nice, respectful man who has never been arrested before in his life.”

Mr. Beodeker, an associate dean for student services at Suffolk County Community College, was heading south on the Meadowbrook about 12:40 p.m. in Roosevelt when he struck a disabled Nissan Maxima and two pedestrians that were tending to the sedan, police said.

The pedestrians, John Elder, 76, of Freeport and Edward Ross, 65, of North Bellmore died at the scene.

The victims were both in the Nissan before it broke down, according to a police report. They had stopped the car in the parkway’s hazard markings, police said.

State police said the car was pulled over on the right shoulder near where three southbound lanes merge to two.

Mr. Beodeker, who was driving a 2012 GMC pickup truck, “either didn’t observe or failed to see that the lanes were merging, and he struck the vehicle that was broken down and was being worked on by the two individuals that were killed,” a state police investigator told Newsday after the crash.

At his March 5 arraignment on the initial charges, he told the court he had taken Ambien and depression medication before the crash, according to a News12 report. He was released on bail after pleading not guilty.

Aside from his work at Suffolk’s Eastern Campus, Mr. Beodeker also teaches at Columbia University’s Teachers College and has been active for years in the North Fork’s performing arts community.

“The authorities continue to investigate this tragedy,” Mary Lou Araneo, a spokeswoman with Suffolk County Comomunity College, said Friday afternoon. “The college is monitoring the details as they emerge and we continue to assess the circumstances as they unfold.”

He is known locally as an actor, director and was a president of the North Fork Community Theatre group in Mattituck. He has also been involved with the Riverhead Faculty and Community Theatre group, which traditionally puts on a fall show at the high school.

He stepped down as North Fork Community Theatre president after the crash, theater officials said

“He’s very upset,” Mr. Wool said when asked about Mr. Beodeker’s state of mind. “Based on that fact that, whether there’s a criminal charge or no criminal charges he’s very upset that two people are not alive today. But this is all new to him. He’s never been arrested, never mind convicted.”

mwhite@timesreview.com

03/12/13 8:00am
03/12/2013 8:00 AM

SCCC

Police are investigating threatening phone calls made against an Aquebogue man charged with reckless driving after a Nassau County car accident that killed two people last week, authorities said.

Officials from Suffolk County Community College’s eastern campus contacted Southampton Town police Thursday about a voice mail regarding the college’s dean of student services, Robert Beodeker, who was involved in the fatal Nassau crash.

According to a police report, one of the school’s secretaries reported a message in which threats were made against Mr. Beodeker and his family.

Mr. Beodeker, who is active in the theater community in Riverhead and Southold towns, was driving a GMC pickup truck when he collided with a disabled vehicle on the side of the Meadowbrook Parkway last Monday, state police said.

The vehicle struck and killed two men who were working on the car, John Elder, 76, of Freeport and 65-year-old Edward Ross of North Bellmore, state police said.

Mr. Beodeker was charged with reckless driving and aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle in Nassau County criminal court last week, court officials said. He told the court that he had taken Ambien and depression medication before the crash, according to a News12 report.

He pleaded not guilty and was released after posting $1,000 cash bail, court officials said. Mr. Beodeker, who is representing himself in the proceedings, is due back in court April 12, according to online court records.

In the meantime, he has stepped down as president of the North Fork Community Theatre in Mattituck, theater officials said. Several calls to Mr. Beodeker seeking comment were not returned.

A Southampton police detective is investigating the threats, according to the police report.

psquire@timesreview.com