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Ramapo rape suspect killed; Orange County man charged with murder

10-11-2013 New York:

A 35-year-old New Hempstead man accused of raping an underage female acquaintance was shot dead in Orange County on Friday. A neighbor has been charged with murder.

Norris Acosta-Sanchez, who had been on the run from Ramapo police since July when a warrant was issued for his arrest, was killed at 115 Old Plank Road, Sparrowbush. David Carlson, 42, who told police he was confronted on his property by Acosta-Sanchez, is accused of killing him, police said.

Carlson, who carried a 12-gauge shotgun, told Acosta-Sanchez that he was going to escort him to a neighbor’s house, where police would be called, officials said.

But at some point, Carlson fired two shots that missed Acosta-Sanchez and then two additional shots that proved fatal, police said.

Carlson, a union carpenter who lived at 99 Old Plank Road, notified authorities of the shooting about 9:30 a.m., Ramapo police said.

Police questioned Carlson after the shooting and charged him Friday with second-degree murder, a felony.

Carlson was to be arraigned Friday night.

His father-in-law, Peter Clark, said Carlson and his daughter live on 22 acres of land resplendent with woods.

Carlson, who was waiting for a carpenter job to come through in New York City, spent much of his time on the property chopping wood and working on a new addition to his house, including on Thursday when the Clarks were celebrating a birthday for a family member and Carlson stayed behind while his wife attended.

Clark, who lives in New Jersey, said he had not heard about the shooting and had no details about the incident.

Acosta-Sanchez, who was unemployed, was suspected of having sexual contact with a girl he knew under the age of 15 in late June, Ramapo Detective Sgt. John Lynch said.

The alleged victim’s family reported the incident to police a few weeks later.

Acosta-Sanchez was recently indicted by a Rockland County grand jury on felony counts of second-degree rape and second-degree criminal sexual act, and a misdemeanor count of endangering the welfare of a child.

“We were looking to arrest him for these charges,” Lynch said. “We had tried several means to locate him. We were not successful.”

Lynch said Deerpark police on Wednesday found Acosta-Sanchez living in a cabin in the woods on Old Plank Road, about 70 miles from Rockland, but he gave them a false name.

After further investigation, officers determined Acosta-Sanchez’s true identity and called authorities in Ramapo, Lynch said. Acosta-Sanchez had changed his appearance and had not been using any electronic devices, he said.

“They called us to verify he was wanted by us and we went up and met them,” Lynch said.

On Thursday, Deerpark and Orange County authorities began an extensive search for Acosta-Sanchez, eventually confronting him near the Rio Reservoir. He swam across the reservoir, evading capture.

The search was called off Thursday night due to darkness, but had resumed Friday morning before authorities were notified of the shooting, officials said.

It was not known if Carlson had obtained an attorney Friday night. A message left at his home was not immediately returned. His brother, Erik, said the family had no comment. ..Source.. by Khurram Saeed and Hoa Nguyen

Questions after rape suspect's death

Friends defend neighbor charged with murder following manhunt

PARROWBUSH — Why fugitive rape suspect Norris Acosta-Sanchez returned to Old Plank Road a day after swimming across the Rio Reservoir to escape arrest is still a mystery.

And now, residents of the Sparrowbush community where Acosta-Sanchez had been a squatter in a vacant cabin are grappling with what they consider another mystery: Why David Carlson — the neighbor who shot and killed Acosta-Sanchez — is charged with second-degree murder.

To them, Carlson, 42, is a kindhearted and generous father of three who alerted police to Acosta-Sanchez' whereabouts, maybe as early as Tuesday, and then was forced to confront him Friday morning after Acosta-Sanchez eluded capture on Thursday.

Hired as a handyman

"You have a good man protecting his family, and he's in jail charged with murder for protecting his family," neighbor Dean Alf Fippinger said.

"The only people I can count on are my neighbors — and what are you doing, locking them up?"

A short walk down a leaf-covered path off Old Plank Road leads to the cabin where Acosta-Sanchez, 35, somehow landed after fleeing several charges, including second-degree rape, in Ramapo.

The cabin is on property adjoining Carlson's.

Unaware of Acosta-Sanchez's past, Carlson had invited him to do odd jobs on his property and, according to one neighbor, sometimes to dinner.

During one of those gatherings, Acosta-Sanchez reportedly admitted to being wanted by the law, and Carlson's family alerted police.

Orange County sheriff's deputies came to arrest Acosta-Sanchez on Thursday afternoon, but he ran into the woods and swam across the Rio Reservoir to Lumberland, police said.

Four shots reportedly fired

The escape triggered a manhunt involving law-enforcement personnel, boats and helicopters. The search was called off Thursday because of darkness.

Acosta-Sanchez was killed Friday morning when he returned to the area.

Police said he was shot as Carlson marched him at gunpoint down Old Plank Road to a neighbor's house, where authorities would be called.

Carlson fired four shots from a 12-gauge shotgun, with two striking Acosta-Sanchez, police said.

"Knowing the backstory to the situation "» with David trying to notify the police, it's just horrifying that it ended this way," said Anna Li, who shares a house with her husband next door to the Carlsons and calls David a "really good man."

Suspect indicted by grand jury

Bruce Mann stood on his porch overlooking Old Plank Road and began naming some of the favors — lending tools; delivering firewood — he received from Carlson, who he described as "salt of the earth."

Carlson's wife stayed at his house Wednesday for safety reasons after finding out Acosta-Sanchez was wanted, Mann said.

"I'm still in shock," he said of the charges against Carlson. "He's one of the best people I've ever met."

Ramapo Detective Sgt. John Lynch was quoted by The Journal News on its website as saying that the family of a girl under the age of 15 reported to police that Acosta-Sanchez had sexual contact with her.

The incident is said to have occurred in late June, and the family made the report a few weeks later.

A Rockland County grand jury indicted Acosta-Sanchez on felony charges of rape and criminal sexual act, and a misdemeanor count of endangering the welfare of a child.

"We were looking to arrest him for these charges," Lynch said, according to the newspaper. "We had tried several means to locate him. We were not successful." ..Source.. by Leonard Sparks

Cops: Sparrowbush man, 42, killed rape suspect wanted in manhunt

SPARROWBUSH — A man who state police said shot and killed a suspected rapist Friday morning was facing a murder charge Friday night.

David I. Carlson, 42, of Sparrowbush, was charged with second-degree murder, a felony, in the shooting death of Norris Acosta-Sanchez, 35, who had been the subject of a manhunt since Thursday.

Acosta-Sanchez, who was wanted on rape charges in Rockland County, was shot and killed on Old Plank Road, apparently after returning to the area he had fled the day before, police said.

Acosta-Sanchez, 35, of Ramapo, had been staying at a property on the rural road, near the Sullivan-Orange county line.

The shooting was reported to police at 9:30 a.m.

Police said their investigation found that when Carlson was confronted by Acosta-Sanchez, he armed himself with a 12-gauge shotgun and told Acosta-Sanchez he was going to bring him to a neighbor's house and have them call police.

Police said that at some point on the way to that house, Carlson fired two rounds that missed Acosta-Sanchez, then fired two more shots, which struck and killed him.

Police said the Orange County Medical Examiner's Office pronounced Acosta-Sanchez dead at the scene.

Carlson was processed at the state police barracks in Greenville and was being held pending arraignment.

The case began to unfold Wednesday when Town of Deerpark police learned that Acosta-Sanchez was staying at a property on Old Plank Road, and that there was an active arrest warrant, charging him with multiple sexual offenses in Rockland County against an underaged victim or victims, police said.

When Orange County sheriff's deputies came to arrest him Thursday afternoon, he was reportedly camping in a makeshift shelter on the property.

Police said he ran off into the woods, swimming the quarter-mile or so across the Rio Reservoir to Lumberland.

Multiple law-enforcement agencies searched for him Thursday; local fire departments helped out with boats and off-road vehicles, and state police scoured the woods in helicopters, but the search was called off Thursday night when it got dark.

On Friday morning, Acosta-Sanchez returned, and was shot at about 9:20 a.m.

Police shut off a section of the road near the county line as they interviewed people behind the police tape and searched for evidence. State police investigators interviewed residents of the road, and later, prosecutors came to hand out grand jury subpoenas to some of them.

Judy Metzroth, who lives near the scene, said she was frightened that something like this had occurred on the normally quiet road she has called home for 16 years.

"Nothing ever happens here," she said.

On Thursday night, as the search was going on, she locked her windows. She had applied for a pistol permit already, but was told it would take about six months to be approved.

After hanging around the scene for a while, she left, saying she was off to buy a shotgun. ..Source.. by Nathan Brown, and by Michael Randall

Man who killed rape suspect is indicted for murder

GOSHEN – The Sparrowbush man, who shot and killed a rape suspect who was hiding in the woods in the Town of Deerpark, has been indicted on five counts including second-degree murder.

David Carlson, 42, of 99 Old Plank Road, was also charged with two counts of manslaughter, and one count each of criminally negligent homicide and criminal possession of a weapon, in the shotgun killing of Norris Acosta Sanchez, 35, of Ramapo on October 11.

Sanchez was wanted in Rockland County on a rape charge.

Carlson shot Sanchez twice with a shotgun, killing him when he said Sanchez approached him.

District Attorney Frank Phillips said the indictment alleges different culpable mental states in the shooting.

If convicted on the murder charge, Carlson could be sentenced to 25 years to life in prison. ..Source..

Charges Dismissed Against Area Man Who Shot Man Wanted For Statutory Rape


Orange County Court Judge Robert Freehill has dismissed the murder and manslaughter indictment against David Carlson. Carlson fatally shot Norris Acosta-Sanchez on October 11, 2013 in an attempt to get Sanchez into police custody. Sanchez was wanted in Rockland County police on charges of statutory rape. According to the Times Herald Record…
Carlson, who had become acquainted with Sanchez, had been enlisted by Deerpark police to help get him into custody. The plan succeeded, but Sanchez got away and showed up at Carlson’s house the morning on Oct. 11, 2013, suspecting Carlson had set him up. Carlson grabbed a shotgun and marched Sanchez toward neighbors’ homes to call police.

Carlson told police that Acosta-Sanchez had lunged at him from a distance of three to five feet away, and he fired the gun. He fired a second time when Sanchez kept coming at him. At least two neighbors witnessed the incident.
The prosecutor who was under then-Orange County District Attorney Frank Phillips, didn’t play the statements for the grand jury. State police Investigator Will Young testified that Carlson never said Sanchez had lunged at him. Investigator Young said Carlson reported that Sanchez never made any aggressive actions.

Carlson’s lawyer, Benjamin Ostrer (speaking on behalf of Carlson and Ostrer’s fellow lawyer David Wallace) said they weren’t out of the woods just yet. According to the Times Herald Record The Westchester County District Attorney’s Office, which is acting as special prosecutor, has 30 days to appeal the dismissal and may present the case to a new grand jury. Judge Freehill found that most of Ostrer’s arguments were backed by a review of David Carlson’s statements, as well as grand jury testimony by both civilian and police witnesses and the pre-trial hearings. Read more HERE ..Source..

Man indicted again for killing Ramapo rape suspect


David Carlson of Orange County was indicted for the second time in the 2013 shooting death of Ramapo rape suspect Norris Acosta-Sanchez.

David Carlson has been indicted again in the shooting death of Rockland fugitive Norris Acosta-Sanchez, who was wanted for statutory rape in Ramapo.

The Orange County man faces charges of second-degree murder, first-degree manslaughter and second-degree manslaughter after a grand jury indicted him Thursday, according to Orange County Court officials. He will be arraigned March 6 before Judge Robert Freehill.

Carlson, 43, killed Acosta-Sanchez on Oct. 11, 2013 after shooting him in the head and arm with a shotgun. He has said the killing was in self defense.

Carlson was originally indicted less than a week after the shooting. His trial began in August, but in November the charges were dropped by Freehill, who said the grand jury presentation was compromised by an Orange County prosecutor who withheld Carlson's claims about feeling threatened by Acosta-Sanchez.

The Westchester County District Attorney's Office will handle the case, spokesman Lucian Chalfen said. The Westchester office took over the prosecution in early 2014 when Orange County district attorney David Hoovler recused himself because he had been law partners with Ben Ostrer, Carlson's attorney.

Ostrer's office declined to comment Thursday.

Acosta-Sanchez, 35, had been wanted by police since July 2013 on a charge of raping a teenage girl. Carlson learned of the charge while Acosta-Sanchez was staying in a cabin on his property.

Carlson tipped off police, who took Acosta-Sanchez into custody. Police allowed Acosta-Sanchez to get his identification back at the cabin, where he escaped.

Acosta-Sanchez confronted Carlson at his house in Sparrowbush (Orange County). Carlson got his shotgun and escorted Acosta-Sanchez down the road to a neighbor's house so he could call police, he has said, but then fired after Acosta-Sanchez lunged at him.

Carlson was originally charged with second-degree murder, first-degree manslaughter, second-degree manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide. ..Source.. by Matthew R Spillane

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