Southampton Blotter: Flanders sex offender attacked woman at knifepoint

A registered sex offender from Flanders was arrested after he attempted to force a woman into the woods at knifepoint Sunday night on Flanders Road in Riverside, police said.

Benjamin Griffin, 57, of Cypress Avenue in Flanders was later located in the woods and arrested, police said. He was charged with second-degree attempted assault and third-degree criminal possession of a weapon.

Mr. Griffin is a level-3 sex offender, the level most likely to repeat as an offender, who by law is required to register for life.

He was convicted of felony rape in 1983 after attacking a female victim at knifepoint, according to Parent’s for Megan’s Law. He served just under 20 years in state prison, before being released in March 2003.

• A Riverhead man was arrested for driving under the influence of drugs Saturday after cops found angel dust in his car, Southampton Town police said.

Denzel Faines, 20, of East Main Street in Riverhead was approached by police after coming across Mr. Faines’ car stopped in the travel lanes of Flanders Road near Spinney Road in Flanders, police said. He was in the driver’s seat at the time, with his hazard lights on.

An officer found that Mr. Faines’ speech was difficult to understand and that the 20-year-old was stuttering, but he told the officer that he had just smoked “dust” prior to driving, officials said. Dust is also called angel dust or PCP.

Aside from the drugs, Mr. Faines was at the wheel with an invalid driver’s license and had three outstanding warrants for his arrest out of Suffolk County, police said. His car was also unregistered and uninsured, according to police, who charged him with driving while impaired by drugs, along with traffic violations and failure to appear in court on a warrant.

• An 18-year-old Flanders man was arrested over the weekend for allegedly breaking a glass door at the UA movie theater in Hampton Bays, Southampton Town police said.

Police got a call about 10:45 p.m. Friday reporting someone had broken a glass front door at the Montauk Highway theater, police said.

Officers located potential suspects a short time later and arrested Bryce Danowski of Huntington Lane in Flanders, officials said.
Mr. Danowski was charged with third-degree criminal mischief, a felony, and released on a court appearance ticket. No other arrests were reported by police.

• Moses Walker, 39, of Vail Avenue in Riverside was charged with unlawful possession of marijuana May 2 on Old Quogue Road in Riverside, police said. Mr. Walker was spotted by police about 11:40 p.m. dropping a plastic bag containing a green leafy substance believed to be marijuana on Old Quogue Road, authorities said. No other details were available.

• Luis Sopla, 30, of Bull Pasture Lane in East Hampton was charged with driving while intoxicated just after midnight Sunday in Flanders.

Mr. Sopla was stopped by police at the intersection of Flanders and Spinney roads after an officer saw him back up in an unsafe manner and also fail to stay in a lane, according to police.

In addition to the DWI, he was charged with first-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle and traffic violations for moving from a lane unsafely and unsafe backing, according to police.

• Someone illegally entered a home on Silverbrook Drive in Flanders and wrote graffiti inside the building, according to police.
A neighbor reported seeing the door to the home open on April 14 and called police.

Those who are named in police reports have not been convicted of any crime or violation. The charges against them may later be reduced or withdrawn, or they may be found innocent.