Centereach man charged in robbery spree
A Centereach man accused of committing a robbery spree along Middle Country Road has been ordered held on $125,000 cash bail.
Joseph Tusa, 35, allegedly stole a vehicle left running outside the Centereach Mall about 7:30 p.m. Wednesday.
About 30 minutes later, Suffolk County police said, Tusa entered Robie's Cards and Gifts, on Middle Country Road in Centereach, and demanded cash, saying he had a weapon. The employee complied and Tusa fled in the stolen vehicle, police said.
On Friday, he returned to the store, again said he had a weapon and demanded cash, police said, but the employee refused. According to the felony complaint, Tusa punched the employee in the forehead, "causing swelling and pain," and fled in the stolen vehicle.
According to police, six minutes later, Tusa entered OK Petroleum, on Middle Country Road in Centereach, said he had a weapon and demanded cash from an employee.
Two employees refused to give him the money, and Tusa fled the store, police said. A few minutes later, Tusa entered Sue's Cardsmart in Independence Plaza in Selden, off Middle Country Road, and made the same demands, according to police. The employee complied, police said, and Tusa fled in the stolen vehicle.
Later that evening, before 6, Suffolk police saw Tusa in the stolen vehicle on College Road in Farmingville. Officers from the Sixth Precinct stopped the vehicle and Tusa was arrested.
Tusa was charged with two counts of third-degree robbery, third-degree attempted robbery, second-degree attempted robbery and third-degree grand larceny. Court officials said Tusa did not post bail Saturday.