Thursday, April 18, 2013


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Driver involved in fatal crash arraigned

HAUPPAUGE – The driver charged with causing the death of a young bicyclist as a result of a motor vehicle collision which occurred on September 11, 2012, was arraigned in Suffolk County Court on Wednesday.

Dennis Grabhorn, Jr., 34, of West Islip, was arrested Tuesday,  April 16th after a seven month investigation by the Third Squad detectives.  Grabhorn was at the traffic light at Udall Rd and the Sunrise Highway service road when a vehicle which had been in the turn lane preparing to turn left moved from the turn lane back into the southbound lane of travel in front of the defendant.   

The defendant allegedly was angry and began tailgating the vehicle.  The driver of that vehicle was doing the speed limit.  The investigation established the defendant passed the other vehicle in the turning lane and cut back in front of it near the intersection of Pine Avenue.  As he did so he struck Thomas Labetti, 15, who was riding his bike on the southbound side of Udall Road.  Thomas died of his injuries 17 days later.

Grabhorn was arraigned by Acting Supreme Court Justice Camacho on a grand jury indictment containing one count of Criminally Negligent Homicide, Reckless Driving, Criminal Possession of a Controlled Substance in the Seventh degree, and various violations of the Vehicle and Traffic Law.  The court set bail at $25,000 cash with a $50,000 bond alternative.

“Today’s arraignment brings a defendant before the courts who as a result of his reckless driving, caused the tragic death of a 15 year old boy while he was riding his bike.” District Attorney Thomas Spota said.  “The defendant was also found to be in unlawful possession of a controlled substance.”