Little Neck manhunt yields 4 arrests

Police take one man, who they believe robbed a Miracle Mile jewelry store, into custody at the Lake Success Park Golf Course. Photo by Ellis Kaplan
TimesLedger Newspapers
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Four Brooklyn men with prior arrests, including one who was convicted of murder, were nabbed after fleeing to a Nassau County golf course following a robbery at a Miracle Mile jewelry store Friday afternoon that set off a massive search in Little Neck and on Long Island, Nassau County police said.

A fifth man was still at large as of Monday afternoon after the men allegedly robbed London Jewelers, at 2046 Northern Blvd. in Manhasset, L.I., Friday afternoon, Nassau police said.

The men entered the jewelry store wearing blue jumpsuits, black bandanas on their faces and gloves before announcing the robbery, police said.

Two of the men brandished handguns while a third used a hammer to smash the glass of several display cases inside the store, police said.

A third man then took a number of Rolex and Breitling watches from the cases before they went to the parking lot to catch up with their getaway driver.

As the men were pursued by police , an NYPD helicopter buzzed overhead in Little Neck and the search was aided by Emergency Services Unit vehicles, K-9 units and squad cars.

A police officer was observed telling residents near 58th Avenue and 264th Street to seek shelter as the NYPD deployed sniffing dogs in the area

The suspects ditched the car they were riding in and ran to the Lake Success Country Club, where they were arrested “without incident,” authorities said.

A handgun believed to be used in the robbery was recovered from the country club’s grounds.

Three of the Brooklyn men — Leroy Nelson, 27, of 831 Monroe Ave.; Javon Gamble, 31, of 960 Bushwick Ave.; and Reggie Fowler, 23, of 455 Carlton Ave.— and a fourth who was identified as a getaway driver, Samuel Cephas, 30, of 5223 Snyder Ave., were charged with robbery and criminal use of a firearm, Nassau police said.

Cephas was also charged with reckless endangerment and unlawful fleeing of a police officer, authorities said.

All four men either have criminal records or have been arrested before, according to the Brooklyn district attorney’s office.

Gamble was convicted of homicide in 1995, the DA’s office said.

Nelson pleaded guilty to six counts of weapons possession in 1998 and received a conditional discharge for another weapons offense in 2001.

Fowler was arrested in May on a criminal possession of marijuana count and was issued a bench warrant, while Cephas pleaded guilty to disorderly conduct and possession of narcotics in 1998, the DA’s office said.


Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e-mail at or by phone at 718-260-4573.

Updated 4:59 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reader feedback

alanwolinsky from little neck says:
They should have not been let go from jail
Oct. 23, 2011, 4:04 pm

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