A victim of a home invasion intended to steal a comic book collection in Medina New York, Homer Marciniak, ultimately died from a heart attack shortly after the crime. This resulted in a guilty plea yesterday by Albert Parsons, a 46-year-old Rochester man, who was a co-conspirator in the commission of the violent crime. The plea, in essence to a felony murder, arose out of an organized shoplifting ring.

A press release issued by the United States Attorney’s Office, Western District of New York, stated:

“Assistant U.S. Attorney’s Anthony M. Bruce and Scott S. Allen, Jr., who are handling the case, said that in the early morning hours of July 5, 2010 the defendant and co-defendants Donald Griffin and Juan Javier burglarized the Medina, NY home of 78 year old Homer Marciniak. The three men were hired by Rico Vendetti and Arlene Combs to steal Marciniak’s valuable comic book collection. During the course of the burglary, Marciniak, who had a serious heart condition, awoke and confronted the burglars. Griffin struck Marciniak and then, along with Javier, tied him up. Marciniak was also repeatedly threatened by Javier.  Parsons, Griffin and Javier ultimately located the comic book collection along with several strong boxes containing cash, coins and other valuables.

After Parsons, Griffin and Javier fled the scene, Marciniak freed himself and was taken to Medina Memorial Hospital for treatment of the facial injuries he suffered when struck by Griffin. However, after Marciniak was treated and released, he suffered a heart attack and died shortly after being re-admitted to the hospital. Medical evidence that the Government was prepared to offer at trial demonstrated that the blow Griffin struck, as well as the emotional trauma caused by the burglary, directly contributed to Marciniak’s cardiac arrest and resulting death.

Parsons, Griffin and Javier gave the comic books to Combs who, along with another co-defendant, Terry Stewart, took the comic books to Vendetti later in the day on July 5. However, once Vendetti learned that the burglary resulted in Marciniak’s death, Vendetti disposed of the comic books.”

This led to Parsons guilty plea to committing a violent crime, and an assault resulting in serious bodily injury, in aid of a racketeering enterprise. Parsons is the final of seven co-conspirators to be convicted in the matter. Rico Vendetti, one of the principal conspirators, was a fence in the ring, who was earlier convicted of racketeering. The broader part of the scheme was the theft of millions of dollars of merchandise from large retailers such as Home Depot, Sears, and Walmart. The items would then be sold to Vendetti for about one-quarter of their value. Vendetti thereafter would sell the stolen merchandise on eBay for about 50% of its value.

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