Jewel Heist Murder Suspects Arraigned

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Mother and Son Store Murder

Jewel-Heist-Murder Suspects Arraigned

By Keiko Morris Newsday Staff Writer


Christopher DiMeo and his mother, Maryann Taylor, were arraigned yesterday in the robbery and shooting death of a Glen Head jeweler December 21. Prosecutors and police said DiMeo, 23, Taylor, 40, and DiMeo’s girlfriend, Nicole Pearce, 23 planned the Glen Head heist.

Both Taylor and Pearce cased J&J Jewels before the robbery, prosecutors said. Pearce will be arraigned at a later date. Taylor and Pearce waited in a car while DiMeo entered the store and shot Thomas Remson, 48, of Glen Cove , while stealing jewels, police have said. Prosecutors said Taylor drove the getaway car. All three, prosecutors said, cashed in on the stolen items to fund their drug habits.

DiMeo is accused of committing at least four robberies between early December and February, including his last on Feb. 2, when Timothy Donnelly, 52, of Bridgeport, and his wife, Kimberly, 52, were shot to death in their Fairfield, Conn., jewelry store. Police believe Pearce was involved in at least three of those robberies. Taylor has been charged with participating only in the Glen Head killing. Mother and son were brought into the Nassau County courtroom separately yesterday, both appearing calm.

Taylor ‘s attorney, William Petrillo of Rockville Centre, entered a not guilty plea on her behalf and then requested that prosecutors turn over all tips and calls received by police that could exonerate Taylor . “It’s our position that there is no credible evidence that Miss Taylor is involved,” Petrillo said after the hearing. Nassau Assistant District Attorney Robert Biancavilla disagreed.

“Not only did she case the jewelry store, she drove the getaway car,” he said, adding that she also helped pawn some of the stolen items. DiMeo’s attorney, Mitch Dinnerstein of Manhattan , entered a not guilty plea. DiMeo also has been charged with the armed robbery of a Westbury jewelry store that occurred before the Glen Head shooting. Taylor and DiMeo were ordered held without bail.

3 Indicted in jeweler slaying

By Keiko Morris Newsday Staff Writer

The trio accused of killing and robbing a Glen Head jeweler in December to fund their heroin addictions has been indicted on murder and robbery charges by a Nassau grand jury, prosecutors said yesterday.

The indictment accuses Christopher DiMeo, 23, his girlfriend Nicole Pearce, also 23, and his mother, Maryann Taylor, 40, of working together to pull off the Dec. 21 heist of J&J Jewels in Glen Head, said Nassau District Attorney Denis Dillon.

During the robbery, DiMeo shot and killed Thomas Renison, 48, of Glen Cove , who had worked at the family store for years, police and prosecutors have said. DiMeo and Taylor will be arraigned on the indictment this morning. Taylor, of Hicksville, and Pearce, of San Marcos, California, scoped out J&J Jewels and described the store to DiMeo before he committed the robbery, according to the indictment.

DiMeo walked into J&J Jewels on Dec. 21 pretending to shop for an engagement ring, then pulled out a .40 caliber semi-automatic handgun, demanded money and took an assortment of jewelry, prosecutors said. He shot and killed Renison, prosecutors said. Police said DiMeo and Pearce went on a robbery spree between early December and February, committing at least four jewelry store robberies, including ones in Westbury and Nanuet in Rockland County .

Police said their last robbery was Feb. 2, when Kimberly and Timothy Donnelly, both 52, were killed in their jewelry store in Fairfield, Conn. Dimeo was indicted on count of first-degree murder, and two counts of first-degree robbery. He faces a maximum of life in prison without parole.

Pearce was indicted on one count of second-degree murder and two counts of first-degree robbery, while Taylor was indicted on one count of second degree murder and one count of first-degree robbery. They face as much as 25 years to life in prison.

Dimeo and Pearce also face charges in Rockland County and Fairfield, Conn. Prosecutors have agreed to allow Nassau to try the pair first, followed by Rockland County and then Fairfield, where both are charged with murder.

Taylor’s attorney, William Petrillo, of Rockville Centre, declined to discuss the indictment, which he had not seen yet, but said he intends to enter a not guilty plea today. Dimeo’s and Pearce’s lawyers declined to comment.

* Case resolved with client, who gave detailed written confession and was facing 25 years to life in prison, receiving reduced plea to first degree robbery. The plea deal guarantees she will serve no more than 12 1/2 years in prison.