NYPD detective accused of burglarizing Lindenhurst home

Long Island news from Eyewitness News

June 26, 2012 3:30:37 PM PDT
Anastasios Matheos described how a group of four men broke into his house in Lindenhurst through a back door earlier this month.

The men made off with more than two thousand dollars in jewelry, but not before police arrived and arrested them all red-handed right in Matheo's front yard.

Eyewitness News has learned that one of the alleged robbers is a detective in the NYPD Special Victims Unit. Detective Rafael Astacio has been with the department for nearly 19 years. He is now being charged with burglary.

"It's sad, what can I say? You pay somebody to protect you and then they go against you," said Matheos.

According to the criminal complaint, Astacio knowingly and unlawfully entered in a building with intent to commit a crime.

Police Commissioner Ray Kelly says the department is cooperating with investigators, which include the FBI.

At Astacio's home in Copiague, a steady group of visitors went in and out on Tuesday. Astacio himself, though never appeared. Neighbors say he's a married father of two and always seems to work hard.

"I always see him work; he takes care of his family seems like the average Joe," said neighbor Peter Crooker.

Astacio has been suspended without pay.

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