LI suspects arrested in theft of Purple Heart

November 7, 2011 5:00:43 AM PST
Police say they've arrested two suspects who stole the Purple Heart of a Long Island man wounded in the Normandy invasion.

Suffolk County police arrested 33-year-old Ryan O'Malley and 29-year-old Nicole Oliva on burglary charges.

Police have linked them to a series of burglaries in the last two weeks.

The Purple Heart, which was recovered, belonged to 86-year-old Thomas Barden.

His son, Scott, told Newsday ( ) that his father received the medal after he was shot in the head during the 1944 invasion.

He said someone broke into his parents' West Babylon home on Friday and removed a safe containing the medal.

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