Graffiti Vandals to Perform Community Service

Resolution of Whistling Willie’s assault case again delayed

By Michael Turton

Resolution of charges against the operator of Whistling Willie’s American Grill continues to drag on. In Cold Spring Justice Court on Wednesday (Dec. 10), Judge Thomas Costello granted Putnam County Assistant District Attorney David Bishop’s request for an adjournment until Jan. 14, the latest in a series of procedural delays. Ray DiFrancesco is charged with two counts of assault and giving a false statement, class A misdemeanors, related to an incident in Cold Spring in the early morning hours of Jan. 1 of this year.

Mayor's Park was vandalized on Monday night (Aug. 11). Photo by M. Turton

Mayor’s Park was vandalized on Aug. 11. (file photo by M. Turton)

Two of the three youths involved in painting graffiti in several locations in Cold Spring last August also appeared in court on Wednesday. Two males, ages 16 and 17, will each pay one-third of the $700 in restitution as ordered by Costello. In addition, the 17-year-old will be required to perform 75 hours of community service.

The 16-year-old, who defaced only one sign, will do 15 hours of community service. The defendants will propose the type service they will provide, to be approved by Bishop. Once the community service has been completed, the court will consider adjournment in contemplation of dismissal of the charges against the two. The third youth charged as a result of the graffiti spree will appear in court in January.

Costello addressed the two teens: “You’ve been given an opportunity — don’t botch it up. Say thank you to Mr. Bishop,” he added. The two turned to Bishop and thanked him.

A 17-year-old male will be required to perform 50 hours of community service after pleading guilty to charges of trespass at Mayor’s Park and at Haldane School last August. No damage or theft occurred as a result of the incident. The youth will appear in court again in January, after completion of the community service, at which time the court will consider dismissal of the charges against him.

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