Home Police and Fire News Breaking News Police charge parolee in knifepoint robbery outside Walmart March 2

Police charge parolee in knifepoint robbery outside Walmart March 2

Riverhead Police handout

Riverhead Police detectives have arrested a man in connection with the March 2 knifepoint robbery of an elderly couple in the Walmart parking lot.

Christopher M. Laterza, 26, no address provided by police, was arrested on Riverside Drive yesterday afternoon just before 2 p.m., police said in a press release issued last night.

Laterza is currently on parole for two 2012 felony convictions. Laterza pleaded guilty to robbery in the third degree and attempted burglary in the second degree in June 2012 and served two years and seven months in a state penitentiary, according to online records. He was released on parole in February 2015.

Riverhead Police said in a March 2 press release the victims were sitting in their car at about 5:15 p.m. that day when they were approached by a unknown male who displayed “a box-cutter type knife” and demanded money. The suspect removed the woman’s pocketbook and fled the area in an eastbound direction, according to the report.

Laterza was charged yesterday with robbery in the first degree and held for arraignment, police said.

Editor’s note: A criminal charge is an accusation. By law, a person charged with a crime is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.