BY BILL DEMAREST
CENTRAL NYACK – A 48-year-old Central Nyack man has been arrested in connection with a robbery at a West Nyack convenience store and the theft of a van used by a Nyack animal rescue program, according to Clarkstown Police.
The incident led to damage to the van, making it unusable, according to the owners at Dapper Dog pet grooming shop who also operate the non-profit Hopeful Tails animal rescue program from the shop at 37 Route 59, in the Nyack Knolls Shopping Center.
Darren Nigro of Central Nyack was arrested Tuesday on charges of third-degree robbery, first-degree unauthorized use of a motor vehicle, both felonies, criminal mischief and petty larceny, both misdemeanors. Nigro was arraigned in Clarkstown Town Court in New City and ordered held on $25,000 bail pending a hearing on Friday.
The van was stolen from in front of Dapper Dog in the early morning hours of May 20. Police said the van was driven to the Mobil On the Run convenience store/gas station just a few minutes away at 116 N. Route 303, West Nyack – opposite Palisades Center mall.
As the convenience store’s clerk was in a rear area of the store, he heard a noise at the cash register area. When the clerk went out front he spotted a man at the cash box for the store’s lottery machine. The clerk confronted the man, there was a brief clash and the man ran from the store with about $60 cash.
The clerk was not injured and was able to get a look at the van the man used as he drove off, police said. Clarkstown police said the van was the one taken from Dapper Dog, with the van found a short time later abandoned at Nyack High School in Upper Nyack.
Gerry Tartaglione, owner of Dapper Dog, who has also long been involved with local, regional and national pet rescue efforts, said the damage to her old van made it unusable. Without the van, she said pet rescue efforts would be made more difficult because small personal cars would have to be used.
Tartaglione and her husband, Nick, said a recent example of why they need a van was an animal rescue that involved picking up 13 dogs at one time. The Tartagliones are hoping someone who knows the work of their Hopeful Tails program can donate a used van that can take the place of the one that was wrecked.
Gerry Tartaglione said the donation would be tax-deductible. Anyone interested in making a donation can contact the Tartagliones at 845-353-3599.
Republished with permission