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Wounded Melius is doing 'great,' says Rep. King

Congressman Peter King leaves North Shore University Hospital

Congressman Peter King leaves North Shore University Hospital on Friday, Feb. 28, 2014 in Manhasset. Credit: Howard Schnapp

Gary Melius, the Oheka Castle owner who was shot Monday, remained in the hospital with a patch over his left eye Friday as police continued to probe the attack.

Surveillance video shows Melius was wounded when someone apparently stepped out of one of two cars that had pulled into the Castle's grounds, walked up to the facility's owner as he sat in his car, and fired through the window, striking Melius on the head, law enforcement sources have said.

Friday, Melius, who is recovering at North Shore University Hospital in Manhasset, was visited by Rep. Peter King (R-Seaford).

"He's great," King said after his brief visit. "If you saw him, you'd thought he got hit in the eye playing handball or tennis."

Melius' left eye was covered by a bandage, King said.

When King walked into Melius' room, Melius was laughing and joking, telling King he could have some of his French fries but warning him not to "steal" his hamburger.

King, who said he's known Melius for more than a decade, said he considers him a supporter and a loyal friend.

"If you're involved at all in Nassau County politics and government, you know Gary Melius," King said. "He's very active."

According to the surveillance video, the shooter appears to get out of a Jeep Cherokee in the Huntington castle's parking area and shoot Melius once before the gun apparently jams, sources said.

Investigators think the second vehicle, a black sedan seen on the video accompanying the shooter's SUV, appears to be an Infiniti, law enforcement sources said.

On Thursday, Nassau Det. Sgt. Patrick Ryder, commanding officer of Asset Forfeiture and Intelligence, said there's a red-light camera on South Oyster Bay Road near Oheka Castle and that "Suffolk is now running it to see if we caught the car."

Police have yet to make an arrest.

At the time of the shooting, King was at the nearby Crest Hollow Country Club with Jeb Bush, Florida's former governor, who was speaking to business leaders. "It was something like out of the 'House of Cards,' " King said. "You have a political heavyweight, Gary Melius; possible candidate for president Jeb Bush, brother of the [former] president, all of us there, and the guy was shot less than a mile away."

With Nicole Fuller

and Tania Lopez

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