Two Brooklyn men and a teenage woman have been charged in connection with a Monday afternoon clothing heist at Tanger Outlets that led to a police chase that ended when the trio crashed a Lincoln Town Car into a Suburu in West Sayville, killing a woman in the Suburu and critically injuring her husband.
Additional charges are pending review with the district attorney’s office, according to a release issued Tuesday by a sheriff’s department spokesman.
The Town Car’s driver, Cordell Tucker, 24, and his two passengers, Rashawn Naquan Smith, 26, and 18-year-old Essence Smith of Troy, N.Y. were arrested at the scene and charged with third-degree criminal possession of stolen property. Ms. Smith was also charged with unlawful possession of marijuana, said Chief Michael Sharkey, who serves as a spokesman for Suffolk County Sheriff Vincent Demarco.
Sheriff’s deputies initiated the pursuit at Exit 64 of the Long Island Expressway after spotting the 2000 Town Car, which had been described by Riverhead Police in a 1 p.m. radio call, officials said. “A registration check revealed switched plates not returning to the vehicle,” according to the sheriff’s press release, which was issued just after noon Tuesday.
“A traffic stop was initiated at Exit 64, Route 112; the subject vehicle fled the scene as officers approached on foot,” it reads.
Chief Sharkey said in the release that Suffolk County Police Department officers were also involved in the ensuing pursuit, which lasted for about eight minutes as the cars traveled south on Route 112 and then west on Sunrise Highway. The trio got off at Lincoln Avenue, where the sedan hit the Suburu driven by Alan Sacher of Holbrook, who was with his wife, Gail. Ms. Sacher later died at Southside Hospital in Bay Shore.
According to Newsday, thousands of dollars worth of merchandise was swiped from the True Religion store — a frequent target of shoplifters at Tanger — before the suspects fled the area via the Long Island Expressway.
Chief Sharkey on Monday told Newsday that he had not yet met with investigators to determine how fast the deputies or suspects were going.
He did say the authorities “backed off” at points during the chase.
“The defendant was obviously operating in a reckless manner,” Sharkey said. “We have to take care.”