A Long Beach man pleaded not guilty Saturday to stalking charges, accusing him of calling and harassing an Amity Harbor woman and collecting information on at least five underage girls on Facebook.
Suffolk County District Court Judge Patricia Grant Flynn set bail at $100,000 bond or $50,000 cash for Mark Lichtner, 60, who was charged with two misdemeanor counts of stalking.
The judge also issued six restraining orders for the Amity Harbor woman, 22, and five girls police said he contacted on Facebook. Lichtner is due back in court Wednesday.
Prosecutors said Lichtner began calling the woman earlier this year and made sexual comments about the woman’s appearance and daily activities, according to court records.
The woman told police she believed Lichtner was following her and conducting surveillance.
Authorities said Lichtner confessed to making phone calls and following girls online.
When contacted by police, Lichtner apologized and asked for help, according to court records.
“I know what this is about. This is about all the girls and the phone calls,” Lichtner told police. “I do strange things when I’m depressed.”
Lichtner told police he didn’t actually follow the girls and offered to let police check his phone. He said he commented on Facebook about what the girls were doing or wearing and said “creepy” things to them.
“Over the years, I have done this a lot to a lot of different girls. In the last two years, I’ve probably called about 100 or 200 girls that I found in Facebook,” Lichtner said. “I can’t believe they post their numbers. It’s dangerous.”
A Legal Aid attorney, who refused to give her name, told the judge it was “one of the most ridiculous stalking cases I’ve ever seen.”
The defense attorney told the judge that the victim could not identify Lichtner or his voice and only identified him through a Google search of his number. She said the victim waited more than two years to report the calls to police.
The defense attorney said none of the girls on Facebook gave statements to police and questioned if they even existed or “were names pulled out of a hat by police.”
In his court-documented confession to police, Lichtner said, “Look, I’m not proud of this and I need help . . . I want to get help for this.”
Suffolk County police arrested Lichtner on Friday morning in Lynbrook.
During an investigation, police said Friday, they found that Lichtner was also the subject of an NYPD investigation for a stalking incident in Manhattan. Authorities said Lichtner used a blocked phone number to make sexually explicit phone calls to women in Massachusetts and Wisconsin.
Officers believe there may be more victims and are asking anyone with additional information to call 631-854-8150.