One year after Oheka Castle owner Gary Melius was wounded in the head outside the historic Huntington catering hall, he released a video statement Tuesday saying he was confident police will eventually catch the shooter.
The police "give me great confidence that they'll find out who did this," Melius said in the video. The political power broker said, "Suffolk County police have been terrific."
He said "the district attorney, everybody, but especially the police, have been in constant contact with myself, my family, my staff."
Melius was in his Mercedes-Benz in a parking lot at the castle when a light-colored Jeep Grand Cherokee pulled up. A masked assailant got out and shot at Melius through the closed side window.
Melius suffered head and facial wounds in the attack, which was caught on video by a surveillance camera.
Since then, police have received "a handful of tips" and "investigated several persons of interest in the case," Suffolk police said in an emailed statement Tuesday night.
Sources said the surveillance video shows Melius stumbling out of his car after being shot. The assailant, who had started to flee, tried to shoot Melius again but the gun jammed, the sources said.
Criminal experts have said Suffolk police should release the video because someone might recognize the shooter. In the statement, the Suffolk police said it "is a key piece of evidence . . . At some point, portions of it may be released when deemed appropriate."
Friends and family of Melius have offered a $100,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the shooter. Suffolk police have issued a reward of "up to $5,000" through Crime Stoppers, the statement said.
Melius said in the video that the shooting "changed my life."
Getting shot, Melius said, made him realize "in a nanosecond, everything can change -- and you're dead."
With Tania Lopez