HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) – A 70-year-old man who parked his small plane in his driveway, upsetting his neighbors and sparking a dispute with town officials, has been arrested.
As CBS2’s Hazel Sanchez reported, he’s been accused of making violent threats with an unusual weapon.
Harold Guretzky of Oceanside called the Town of Hempstead Supervisor’s Office on the phone and verbally threatened two employees with a crossbow, Nassau County Police said.
Guretzky faces two charges of aggravated harassment.
Guretzky had been having an ongoing dispute with the Town of Hempstead over keeping his plane in his driveway. The town ticketed him $2,500 for illegal storage of a plane.
Guretzky had said he was keeping the plane in his driveway because he didn’t want to pay the $150 storage fee for the plane at Republic Airport.
Last week, the town dismantled his plane and removed it.
Now, he could end up paying a heftier price that includes jail time for some of the disputes that he’s had about parking the plane in his driveway.
His lawyer argues his client was just angry about the plane, CBS2’s Raegan Medgie reported.
“Is he an angry man? Yes. Is he ever going to hurt anybody? Absolutely not,” attorney Mark Ialenti said.
Guretzky was in court on Wednesday after making the alleged threats.
Police said Guretzky called the Town Supervisor’s officer on Monday and threatened to hurt two employees with a crossbow.
He was arrested on Tuesday, but Ialenti insists that his client is harmless.
“He’s an angry old man. He called up. He made a threat. He’s not going to carry it out,” Ialenti said. “If I had a nickel for every time somebody threatened me, I’d be a millionaire too.”
Guretzky’s battle with town officials has been going on since last summer.
“Why they’re picking on me, I don’t understand,” he said at the time.
His attorney would not tell reporters if his client even owns a crossbow.
Guretzky is free on $2,500 bail.