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Feds: Former Westchester County cop executed four men in cocaine deal gone bad

December 21, 2016  |  Posted by: Francesca Falzarano
Feds: Former Westchester County cop executed four men in cocaine deal gone bad

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Former Westchester County cop charged with the drug-related murders of four men.

Federal prosecutors have accused a former police officer in Westchester County, New York of killing four men in a cocaine deal gone awry after investigators discovered evidence on his sprawling farm upstate — which included a quartet of bodies.

According to the New York Daily News, 49-year-old Nicholas Tartaglione executed the four victims at an Orange County bar in April when a drug deal for 5 kilos of cocaine went amiss.

He then purportedly took a 30-minute car ride from the Likquid Lounge in Chester to his home, where he buried the bodies.

Authorities used a backhoe to dig up the bodies on Tuesday on the 178-acre Otisville property, where residents have noticed a putrid smell in recent days.

“I go to my chicken coop, and I see the backhoe digging, and it scares me because now I know what they’re digging for,” neighbor Kerri-Ann Lynch said. “I’d have never suspected this.

Nicholas Tartaglione was charged with killing Hector Gutierrez, Martin Luna, Urbano Santiago and Miguel Luna. (HANDOUT)

One local acquaintance of Tartaglione repeated Lynch’s tale of a bad stench coming from the farm.

“It smelled of death, but then it disappeared after a couple of days,” the neighbor, who asked to remain anonymous, said.

The ex-police officer was arraigned in Manhattan Federal Court for murdering 41-year-old Martin Luna; 25-year-old Miguel Luna; 32-year-old Urbano Santiago; and 43-year-old Hector Gutierrez.

“When the perpetrator of a gangland-style, quadruple homicide is a former police officer, that strikes at the heart of civilized society,” Preet Bharara, Manhattan U.S. Attorney, said in a statement.

The two Lunas and Santiago, all related, and Gutierrez, a friend of the family, were last seen alive on April 11th at a diner in Chester, ABC7 reported.

At the time of the victims’ disappearance, Chester police said the missing individuals often went to a farm in Wallkill and worked in farming or construction.

Former police officer Nick Tartaglione is charged with killing four men and burying their bodies at his farm in New York. Picture: Briarcliff Manor Police Department

“These brutal murders are prime examples of the dangerous crimes that are associated with drug distribution,” New York State Police Superintendent, George Beach, stated. “Narcotics destroy communities and put lives at risk.”

Tartaglione has been charged with drug conspiracy, murder, along with a host of other crimes.

He could face like behind bars without the possibility of parole, and could even face the death penalty.

Tartaglione retired from the department in 2008 with an annual pension of $65,176. Nicholas Tartaglione Sr., his father, told The Daily News that his son is innocent.

“It’s not true — absolutely not,” he insisted. “He’s the best kid in the world. It’s a serious thing. They just said that they found four bodies.”

Tartaglione bought the Eleazer Harding Farm in Otisville for over $500,000 and moved in with his girlfriend last year.

The couple suddenly broke up about two months ago, even after he purchased 20 horses at an auction and decorated the farm with large wooden sculptures of a deer and a bear.

“He was here and all of a sudden he was gone,” a source said. “Now this is going on, and it all makes sense.”

The muscular Tartaglione retired from the Briarcliff Manor Police force in Westchester County after a relatively sketchy career. He was charged with lying under oath to protect a woman who was busted for drunk driving in 1999 — and was placed on indefinite suspension despite an acquittal the following year. He was awarded $320,000 in back pay and was reinstated after filing a 2002 lawsuit.

He had also worked as an officer for police departments in Pawling, Dutchess County, and Mount Vernon before he went to Briarcliff Manor.

Tartaglione was the center of an FBI civil rights investigation for the physical abuse of several people, including public access TV host Clay Tiffany.

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