Cops: Riverhead man arrested on felony weapons charge

Anthony Wayne Smith
Anthony Wayne Smith

A Riverhead man who received $350,000 in a settlement with the town nearly two years ago was arrested on a felony weapon possession charge Wednesday following an incident that occurred on Railroad Avenue in April, Riverhead Town police said. 

On April 26, Anthony Wayne Smith, 56, was found in possession of a gravity knife, which he was not permitted to have due to a prior felony conviction, police said.

He was arrested about 12:20 p.m. on Railroad Avenue and held for morning arraignment, according to a release.

In August 2012, the town paid $350,000 in a settlement of a 1996 lawsuit alleging that town police officers falsely arrested Mr. Smith, according to prior news coverage.

The lawsuit, filed in federal court by Mr. Smith, named the town along with two police officers as defendants, seeking $2.4 million in total.

The lawsuit stated that on Feb. 1, 1995, Mr. Smith was arrested at a bus stop on West Main Street and Griffing Avenue for “asserting his right to freedom of speech” and accused the town police of unreasonable search and seizure, false arrest and imprisonment, unreasonable and excessive force and remanding Mr. Smith for psychiatric tests without cause.