Suspect in fatal Brentwood hit-run arraigned
A 45-year-old man who police said left the scene of a fatal hit-and-run crash in February, only to be arrested last week at the Canadian border, remained in custody after his arraignment yesterday.
Sylvestro Liotta of Central Islip was indicted on one felony count of leaving the scene of an incident without reporting, one felony count of first-degree offering a false instrument for filing, one misdemeanor count of third-degree perjury and one misdemeanor count of aggravated unlicensed operation of a vehicle.
Acting State Supreme Court Justice Fernando Camacho set Liotta's bail at $200,000 cash or $400,000 bond. His attorney, Tad Scharfenberg, entered a plea of not guilty for Liotta. He is being held in Riverhead and returns to court May 22.
Liotta was wanted on an outstanding warrant in the Feb. 18 hit-and-run crash that left Orlando Marquez, 38, of Brentwood, dead.
The charges of offering a false instrument for filing and perjury indicate Liotta provided a false statement on the day of the crash, according to the indictment. Authorities also charged he drove the 2010 Ford Transit without a license.
U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents arrested Liotta April 17 as he sat on a Trailways bus at the checkpoint on the Peace Bridge, which connects Buffalo to Fort Erie, Ontario, Canada. Agents found he had an outstanding Suffolk warrant.
A state police spokesman, Investigator Gary Colon, last week said that the federal agents handed Liotta over to them, and they handed him over to U.S. marshals to be transportedback to Suffolk County. It was not immediately clear when the warrant for Liotta was issued -- nor was it clear what led investigators to tie Liotta to the hit-and-run that killed Marquez.
With John Valenti