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Long IslandCrime

Cops: Watch photo may lead to suspect in fatal home invasion

Detectives are hoping this picture of the Lucien

Detectives are hoping this picture of the Lucien Piccard Seashark watch will help lead them to the burglar suspected of causing the death of a retired minister on Shelter Island. Credit: SCPD

Detectives are hoping the picture of a watch will help lead them to the burglar who is suspected of causing the death of a retired minister on Shelter Island.

The Rev. Paul Wancura, 87, died Monday from injuries sustained after he was tied up for at least three days by the burglar who invaded his home on Oak Tree Lane last month, police said.

He was found March 19 when a minister from his local Episcopal church went to check on him because he failed to show up the previous day to preach at a Central Islip church, police said.

Detectives released a photo Thursday of a Lucien Piccard Seashark watch, the type that was stolen in the burglary and asked anyone with leads on the case to call Crime Stoppers at 800-220-8477.

Crime Stoppers has already offered a $10,000 reward for information leading to an arrest.

Wancura was hospitalized and had a hand amputated after he was found. He seemed to rebound, but police said he died Monday of sepsis caused by his injuries.

Wancura was a Queens native and former IBM employee, friends said.

He preached for 26 years at Caroline Church of Brookhaven in Setauket before officially retiring. Wancura had been feted recently for 50 years of leading services on and off at St. Andrew’s Dune Church in Southampton.

He met his late wife, Helena Rommel, at a Shelter Island church. She died not long after Wancura retired 17 years ago and they moved into her family’s Shelter Island home.

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