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2nd Long Island camp counselor accused of sex crimes, child porn possession

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Kristin Thorne reports on the arrest of a counselor at a Long Island day camp.

A Long Island camp counselor is under arrest after authorities say he inappropriately touched several children last summer.

Authorities say 25-year-old Jay Marcello has been employed at Kenwal Day Camp in Melville for the past seven years and currently works as a substitute teaching assistant at Nassau County BOCES Rosemary Kennedy Center in Wantagh.

Following an investigation by Computer Crimes Unit detectives, the FBI Long Island Crimes Against Children Task Force and the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office, Marcello was arrested on his way to work Monday morning.

Authorities say he had inappropriate verbal conversations with campers of various ages and inappropriately touched 14-year-old campers between July and August of 2016.

Sot. John Cortez/Suffolk County District Attorney's Office

"The allegations are that in some of these communications, he would discuss sexual activity with these minors and discuss making arrangements to meet with these minors to actually carry out what he had discussed," said John Cortez, of the Suffolk County District Attorney's Office.

The investigation was launched after the October 2016 indictment of Keith Meyn, another Kenwal employee who is currently facing 112 sex crime charges. They include first-degree criminal sexual act, use of a child in a sexual performance as a sexually-motivated felony, first-degree sexual abuse, endangering the welfare of a child, and 100 counts of possessing a sexual performance by a child.

Marcello is charged with eight counts of endangering the welfare of a child, two counts of third-degree sex abuse and one count of disseminating indecent material to minors. He pleaded not guilty and is being held on $180,000 bond.

His attorney insists he is innocent, but prosecutors say he's given a number of written statements to investigators admitting he had sexual conversations with eight boys under the age of 16 on social media and that he would brush up against them in a sexual manner while at camp. They say he also has a boy take a naked picture and send it to him.

"These are just allegations at this point," attorney Victor Mevorah said. "We have a defense. We have a side of the story that will come out."

Kenwal Day Camp issued the following statement:

"Police have informed us Jay Marcello, a former counselor at Kenwal Day Camp, has been arrested on charges related to sexual abuse and endangering the welfare of children, all charges related to the 2016 camp season. As we come to grips with this shocking and distressing news, we are working closely with local law enforcement to find out additional details and aid their
efforts in any way possible. We also will be conducting our own internal investigation to discover more details of what happened, and offering any support we can to the victims and their families. We had no reason to believe, nor were we made aware of any problem with the person in question, and all our staff are carefully screened by every acceptable method available to us. The health and safety of our campers are our top priority. As such, in the days and weeks ahead we'll work with law enforcement to learn all we can about how this happened and work to ensure it never happens again."


The investigation is continuing, and detectives believe there may be additional victims. Anyone who may be a victim or have information about this case is asked to call the Computer Crimes Unit at 631-852-6279. All calls will be kept confidential.

Related Topics:
child sex assaultchild pornographyMelville
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