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Long IslandCrime

NUMC patient signs out, steals police ambulance, cops say

A hospital patient upset with his care signed himself out and stole a police ambulance early Tuesday, Nassau police said.

Donald Winkler, 83, of Merrick, was found at the 7-Eleven on Jerusalem Avenue in North Merrick after officers responded to a 911 call to check on him, police said.

Winkler had left Nassau University Medical Center in East Meadow, police said, and when he walked from the emergency room to the parking lot about 1 a.m., he saw a Nassau police ambulance with keys in the ignition and hopped in.

A short time later at the 7-Eleven, he admitted to officers that he took the ambulance, which he had found in the store’s parking lot, authorities said.

Winkler, of Potter Avenue, was arrested and taken back to the same hospital for evaluation and treatment, police said.

He was arraigned at his hospital bedside on charges of second-degree grand larceny.

It was not known late Tuesday night whether he had an attorney.


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