Car slams into condo building in Nassau County, driver allegedly tries to flee

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Thursday, August 25, 2022
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A car crashed into the side of a condominium building in Farmingdale overnight. Chantee Lans has the story.

FARMINGDALE, Nassau County (WABC) -- A car slammed into the side of a condo on Long Island early Thursday, leaving a massive hole in the home but missing the homeowners who miraculously managed to escape injury.

Police say the 2019 Volkswagen Golf came flying off Fulton Street in Farmingdale, went through a fence and onto Stratford Green at 2:45 a.m.

The car ended up on its side, parked in Steve Laiosa's living room, all while he and his wife were asleep upstairs.

"My wife started screaming like crazy," Laiosa told Eyewitness News. "At that point, we really didn't know. It's not the first time someone has crashed here, so we thought it was out on the property somewhere. I mean, who could imagine that car could have come this far?"

Video from the scene showed extensive damage to the condo, with a front wall ripped away and the vehicle embedded in a kitchen area.

Remarkably, the driver survived. Laiosa said he tried to flee but didn't get far.

"He climbed out the windshield," he said. "I caught him on the side of the house, but he pulled away from me. But luckily I was able to give the police a description, and they found him."

The driver, 20-year-old Calogero Messina, was taken to an area hospital for evaluation.

He is now charged with criminal mischief and leaving the scene of a crash.

The cleanup unfolded on live television Thursday morning as crews pulled the wrecked vehicle from the home just after 5:30 a.m.

Neighbors said nothing quite like this has happened before, but there have been close calls in this area.

"The traffic pattern out on Hempstead Turnpike and Conklin is just terrible," area resident Kristyne Dorian said. "(Route) 109 meets Conklin, and it's dangerous, and we have accidents on a pretty regular basis. This one just happened to be the most severe and hit someone's home."

Another major issue is that the crash literally knocked the home off its foundation.

Video showed the structure buckling out on the side.

It is not clear when -- or if -- the homeowners are going to be allowed back inside.

The investigation is ongoing.

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