ROCKVILLE CENTRE, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – A Long Island teenager now charged in the slaying of a young woman in Rockville Centre spoke to CBS 2 just one day before he was arrested.
As CBS 2’s Amy Dardashtian reported, police said when Maxwell Sherman, 18, was keeping a gruesome secret when he commented on the death of Lauren Daverin, 18.
On Friday, Sherman raised his eyebrows while talking with CBS 2’s Carolyn Gusoff in front of the Rockville Centre footbridge where Daverin was found slain the night before. On Saturday, Sherman, of Long Beach, was arrested and charged in Daverin’s death.
At the time of the interview, Sherman was not a suspect. But he told Gusoff he was present the night Daverin was found.
Sherman: I met her for like five minutes.
Gusoff: So you were here with this group that was just hanging out?
Sherman: Around 7 o’clock, yeah.
Gusoff: What was everyone doing?
Gusoff: What was everybody doing? Just hanging?
Sherman: They were chilling by the soccer post or whatever. I just rode by and saw my friend Steve, and got a cigarette from him.
Some of the teens told CBS 2 they left Daverin drunk on the footbridge. According to the criminal complaint released Sunday, Lauren Daverin, 18, died of strangulation, and Sherman has been acused of committing the act.
In Sherman’s mug shot, there are scratches on his face. He is wearing the very same shirt as he was when he talked to CBS 2.
Gusoff: And what’s your reaction to this now?
Sherman: Amazed; kind of. It’s right in the middle of town; surprised.
Gusoff: And there was nothing going on in the group last night that would suggest somebody was getting hurt?
Sherman: Nah, everybody was just chilling; hanging out.
Daverin’s body was found on a fenced walkway near a soccer field on Thursday night. Her body was naked except for a pair of boots.
The footpath where her body was discovered, naked and beaten, has become a memorial to Daverin.
On Sunday, dozens of Daverin’s friends and family members showed up to see Sherman arraigned in Nassau County Court in Mineola. Daverin’s husband, who arrived in his U.S. Army fatigues, led her fragile mother into court.
The family declined to comment, but a representative said family members “just wish for justice.”
Sherman hung his head in court, denying that he killed Daverin. Prosecutors said Sherman is unemployed and lives in a home on Louisiana Street in Long Beach with his parents.
“I guess you never really know who your neighbors are,” a nearby resident said.
Following Sherman’s arraignment, Daverin’s family went back to the footbridge to mourn at the memorial that had been set up, penning memories of the teen they had called an angel.
Family members asked those who knew Daverin to come to the footbridge where she was found and write their memories on the memorial so they can share those memories at her funeral.
As CBS 2’s Janelle Burrell reported, friends said Daverin had a zest for life.
“She was a little rough around the edges, but all around a great presence. Great to be around, always positive energy when you’re around her,” Aaron Holod said.
“Lauren, she’s a wild girl, she’s real fun, she’s loud,” said another friend.
David Paiz and his brother, Eric, found the body and recognized it as Daverin’s.
“I left her to hang out with other people and I came back to see if she was still here. I came back and I saw her dead body so I called 911,” David Paiz said.
Young people in the area say the park where Sunrise Highway and Merrick Road share a pedestrian overpass called the Mill Pond footbridge is a popular hangout for teens.
Sherman is being held without bail pending his next court appearance on Wednesday. If convicted, he faces up to 25 years in prison.
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