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Freeport Man Pleads Guilty to Burglarizing Homes Damaged by Superstorm Sandy

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Defendant left cigarette butts with crucial DNA evidence behind at crime scenes.

Mineola, NY - May 16, 2014 – Nassau County District Attorney Kathleen Rice announced that a man pleaded guilty today to breaking into three Freeport homes that had suffered damage from Superstorm Sandy, stealing TVs and other valuables, and ruining repairs that had been done.
 
Keith Shippey, 24, of Freeport, pleaded guilty before Nassau County Court Judge Anthony Paradiso to three counts of Burglary in the 2nd Degree (a C felony) and Grand Larceny in the 4th Degree (an E felony). Shippey received a sentencing commitment of 7 years in prison and 3 years post-release supervision. He is due back in court for sentencing on June 26.
 
“These homeowners were victimized twice – first by a powerful and destructive storm, and second by the heartless actions of a man who stole and tore down what they had just rebuilt,” DA Rice said. “Leaving cigarette butts behind in these battered homes turned out to be not only disrespectful, but instrumental to bringing this defendant to justice.”
 
Between April 27 and 29, 2013, Shippey broke into two homes in Freeport that were undergoing repairs due to Sandy damage. He stole TVs and cut and removed copper pipe from both homes that had been newly installed, ruining the repairs that had been done.
 
Shippey smoked cigarettes in both houses and left the cigarette butts behind, leaving DNA to be used in the case against him.
 
On Aug. 27, 2013, the Nassau County Police Department located Shippey and placed him under arrest.  When they arrested him they found numerous items of stolen property in his car. Shippey was also wearing a pair of pants with sheetrock dust found to be from a third Freeport home he burglarized hours earlier. Shippey had broken into that home and stole a laptop, Louis Vuitton bags, prescription medication, and jewelry.
 
Shippey was also found in possession of a wallet that had been stolen from another victim’s car on Aug. 11, 2013 in Freeport. 
 
Assistant District Attorney Jesse Aviram of DA Rice’s County Court Trial Bureau is prosecuting the case. Shippey is represented by Cornell Bouse, Esq.
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