David Laffer Indicted In Haven Drugs Pharmacy Massacre; Lawyer Describes Him As ‘Overwhelmed’

CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – The Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office has indicted David Laffer in connection with the massacre at Haven Drugs Pharmacy in Medford.

Laffer’s Attorney, Mary Beth Abbate, said she expected that four counts of first-degree murder would be added to the charges. She also offered the very first glimpses into Laffer’s psyche.

“He’s overwhelmed. He’s never been arrested before. He’s never been in any trouble. He’s a veteran,” she told reporters.

Laffer did not appear in court Tuesday. He is being held without bail on first-degree murder and resisting arrest charges.

Abbate said she believes Brady is cooperating with the district attorney and may be cutting a deal with prosecutors to avoid a murder charge.

PHOTOS: Haven Pharmacy Massacre

“Somebody under the influence of drugs would say anything,” Abbate said.

Abbate said her client is not suicidal but she wants him kept in protective custody.

“There’s a lot of strong emotion running around and again, the jail is not immune to that,” Abbate said. “I am concerned about his safety.”

Laffer’s wife, 29-year-old Melinda Brady, is accused of robbery and obstruction. A grand jury, however, is considering upgrading charges against her. Prosecutors claim Brady confessed it was her idea to steal the prescription painkillers. She also allegedly admitted to driving the getaway car.

1010 WINS’ Mona Rivera reports: No Action Taken Against Melinda Brady

Brady was due in court Tuesday, however her appearance was postponed to July 15. She has not yet been indicted.

Laffer’s lawyer said her client’s fingerprints in the pharmacy were left on a previous occasion. She also claims the surveillance photos do not look like Laffer and that she knows nothing of a police lineup.

“You all saw his face; I think that the police did not get a confession that they wanted from him,” Abbate said.

When asked by CBS 2’s Jennifer McLogan is she felt Laffer’s face showed remorse, Abbate answered, “I think the bruises show that he was very seriously injured.”

WCBS 880’s Sophia Hall: David Laffer Didn’t Appear In Court

The execution-style killings of four people during the robbery stunned the Tri-State Area.

LINK: Read The Felony Complaint Against Melinda Brady

An uncle of victim Jaime Taccetta said many want the case to become a federal case — a capital crime.

“Mr. Laffer and his wife should be…they should consider themselves very fortunate that they will be tried in a court of law versus the court of public opinion, where they most assuredly would have been stoned to death upon their apprehension,” Ray Malone said.

On Tuesday, detectives paid another visit to Laffer’s home. This time, they sifted through a specific storm drain for possible weapons and evidence.

At a makeshift shrine at the Medford pharmacy, anger and sadness was still very much present within the community.

“It’s just so heartbreaking what happened to everybody. I can’t believe it,” Charlotte Devivo said.

If convicted, what is the appropriate punishment in this case? Sound off in our comments section.

More from Sophia Hall
  • DanTe

    Awww… Poor man. He’s “overwhelmed”. Let’s put him out of his misery with a good electric fricassee or two.

    • Lew

      I’d prefer LEAD poisoning..

  • starviego

    The prosecution is losing steam fast. They don’t have the missing pills nor fake beard, their ballistics match doesn’t match, there was no positive ID in a lineup, the video doesn’t look like him, and the wife has not named him as her accomplice. What else do they got?

  • Up and coming Defense Attorney


    David Laffer did not kill 4 people, the Heroin he took did. “Your honor, I ask that Mr. Laffer be deemed unfit to stand trial due to mental defect.”

  • yuri rochenko

    okay, okay, how about this …

    sit him down, tie him to a chair and sew his eyelids open. then make him watch Jersey Shore 24/7 for the next 70 years.

    • Steve

      inappropriate comment……but I see where your coming from

  • No mercy

    Suicide watch? Leave them unattended for some time. The police would do everyone a favor.

    • Tom

      I think it is just standard procedure to keep them on suicide watch. Truth is, they are both Sociopath’s and the last thing iether of them will do is kill themselve’s. Sociopath’s have no understanding of the hurt they cause other people and even in the rare case they do, they don’t care at all. They should have shot them both upon arrest. Our only next hope is a prisoner kills them. Which likley will be the case.

      • sam uddin

        if you are without sin, please be the first to cast the stone… I love the way you idiots love to judge and convict people without so much as a trial… what happened to innocent until proven guilty? what if it was one of your family members suspected of the crime?

      • Lew

        I TOTALLY AGREE. The headlines should have read: “COUPLE SHOT AND KILLED WHILE RESISTING ARREST” End of story.

  • JMS

    wow. the cops really tuned him up good. i understand their feelings but in a case like this they were prolly better off leaving him alone as you don’t want any unneccesary complications in the criminal trial. If he had confessed to the crime after a beating like that there isn’t a judge out there who would led that confession stand.

    • IgnoranteElephante

      Au contraire Au contraire, you’d be hard pressed to find judge who would throw such a confession out even in liberal New York. With four innocent people dead, any judge would go out of his way to find the confession voluntarily obtained rather than face the political upheaval and repercussions if they would suppress it. Besides with the pills, the camera footage, the positive identification, and his finger prints on the scene, there is a pretty solid case even without him or his crack head wife testifying.
      Ask yourself this, however. Everyone, including him and his lawyers, know that he is looking at multiple life sentences if convicted. He does not care whether he gets one or two such sentences. Given that, what incentive does he have to plead guilty? This is where the death penalty comes in handy. Having the threat of death hanging over his head would give him an incentive to plead guilty and get a life sentence and avoid the financial and emotional costs of a trial. This is where those statistics that claim life in prison is less costly than the death penalty are skewered. They don’t take into account the astronomical cost of a homicide trial and the utility of leverage.

      • IgnoranteElephante

        skew•er   /ˈskyuər/ Show Spelled[skyoo-er] Show IPA
        1. a long pin of wood or metal for inserting through meat or other food to hold or bind it in cooking.
        2. any similar pin for fastening or holding an item in place.
        verb (used with object)
        3. to fasten with or as if with a skewer.
        4. (colloquial) slanted, crooked, or splintered.

        Nice try. Genius.

      • Five T

        skew·er ed (skyr)
        1. A long metal or wooden pin used to secure or suspend food during cooking; a spit.
        2. Any of various picks or rods having a function or shape similar to a skewer.


        Distorted or biased in meaning or effect

  • bronson

    That low life piece of human garbage not only took the lives of four beautiful people, he also cost me my Pharmacy. Haven Drugs was my go to store for the past 18 years. The owner and his staff were the very best. I have lost many friends.

  • Onslow

    I love seeing that mugshot of that busted up face.

    What goes thru the mind of someone who mercilessly takes four lives and now must face the prospect of spending the remainder of his life in prison?

    24 hour suicide watch makes sense … he must be trying to figure a way of ending his life rather than face justice … he knows he will suffer hell on earth … and then hell in the afterlife.

    What a waste … humanity at its worst :(

    • Steve

      You are so right……sometimes forgiveness is not an option, unless your the almighty. What a waste…and a veteran too? I get sick when i hear cases like this. My condolences to the victims families who perished. RIP

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