One Brother Jailed, Another Left Carless

    “This is not your first time in front of a court,” East Hampton Town Justice Lisa R. Rana told Cesar A. Martinez, 54, of Springs at his arraignment Sunday morning.

    Mr. Martinez nodded, shrugged, and looked down at the floor.

    “You are charged with felony unlicensed operation and two misdemeanor D.W.I. charges,” Justice Rana said. “I fully anticipate these deewee charges are going to be upgraded to the felony level,” indicating that the accused has been convicted of drunken driving within the past 10 years.

    Additionally, said the justice, Mr. Martinez faced two moving violations, “doing 45 in a 30, and driving an uninsured vehicle.”

    “Who represented you on the D.W.I. charge in 2006? You pled guilty to a felony D.W.I. in county court,” she said. “You had a second felony D.W.I. charge in 2002. You had a D.W.I. charge in 2001. You had two D.W.A.I. charges, 2001 and 1987.”

    “My records indicate two felony D.W.I. convictions, one D.W.I. misdemeanor, two ability-impaireds. Based on your two felony convictions, I cannot set bail for you.”

    “Can I speak,” a man said from his seat in the courtroom. “Can I say something, your honor?” 

    “I don’t want you to say anything,” the justice answered.

    The man began to speak. “I’m his brother. He drove my car. My car has insurance.”

    Justice Rana was silent for a moment.    “Honestly, right now, that is not the biggest issue,” she answered.

    The defendant whispered to Tania Valverde, who translates for the court on Sundays.

    “What he wants to know is, when is he going to get out,” the translator asked. “He wants to get out of this today.”

    “If he is going to be released at all, it is going to be Friday,” Justice Rana answered. (A prisoner arrested on a weekend on a felony charge must be indicted by a grand jury or released from custody within 144 hours under state law.)

    Mr. Martinez had been charged with speeding on Saturday at about 10:30 a.m. on Fort Pond Boulevard in Springs. “I had a lot to drink last night, but I didn’t drink today,” he reportedly told the East Hampton Town police officer who arrested him. His blood-alcohol content, however, was recorded an hour later at police headquarters at .16, twice the legal limit.

    Police impounded the 1997 Ford belonging to Mr. Martinez’s brother under a county law aimed at repeat offenders. The car will eventually be returned to its rightful owner, but it is a long process, as an officer was trying to explain to the now carless brother at headquarters the next morning.

    Also charged recently with felony drunken driving was Frederick Chacon, 28, who was taken into custody in the early hours of Tuesday. At his arraignment later that morning, he told Justice Rana he splits his time between the East End and Myrtle Beach, S.C.

    “I was informed by Southampton that there is a warrant for you for your failure to pay for your previous D.W.I. conviction,” she told him, citing his conviction for misdemeanor drunken driving in 2011. “The [assistant district attorney] Maggie Bopp has asked bail to be set at $30,000.”

    She continued to review his record. “He also has an open warrant out of New York City,” she said to Trevor Darrell, a local attorney who handles criminal law and was in the courthouse on another matter. Mr. Darrell had agreed to stand in for Mr. Chacon’s proceedings.

    “He has two prior alcohol-related convictions. He also has something out of Pittsburgh, disorderly conduct. Given his limited ties to the community and his criminal history, I’m setting bail at $10,000.”

    Mr. Chacon indicated that he would probably not be able to make bail. He is due back in Justice Court today.

    Two men charged with aggravated drunken driving who were seated next to each other on the prisoners’ bench Sunday morning found that their families knew each other. Seated in the courtroom were four relatives of Manuel C. Pena-Tacuri, 25, of East Hampton, who had been pulled over for erratic driving on Stephen Hand’s Path in East Hampton the evening before.            Mr. Pena-Tacuri’s blood-alcohol count was .21, it was reported.

    Noting that Mr. Pena-Tacuri also faces four moving violations and that he had “pleaded guilty to driving with ability impaired in August 2011, not too long ago,” Justice Rana set his bail at $1,000.

    Geovanny E. Plaza-Moyan, 33, of Springs was next to be arraigned. Mr. Plaza-Moyan had been arrested at about 9 p.m. on Saturday after reportedly making an erratic turn from Abraham’s Path in East Hampton onto Three Mile Harbor Road. His blood-alcohol content was said to be .19.

    As she tried to determine bail, Justice Rana asked Mr. Plaza-Moyan if anyone knew he had been arrested. One of the men related to Mr. Pena-Tacuri stood up.    

    “Are you here for the defendant?” the justice asked.

    The man spoke to Ms. Valverde, the translator.

    “They know his family,” she told the court. “They will call them.”

    Both families are from Cuenca, Ecuador, whose citizens form a tight-knit community in East Hampton.

    Bail was set for Mr. Plaza-Moyan, who has never been arrested before, at $350.

    A 41-year-old Brooklyn man was also arraigned on a charge of driving while intoxicated Sunday morning. Matthew P. Opalack, who told Justice Rana he was here for the weekend to attend a wedding, refused to take the breath test at headquarters, according to police, meaning his license was automatically suspended and is likely to be revoked for one year. With no previous arrest record, but with tenuous ties to the community, his bail was set at $350.

    Two East End seasonal workers, Erin E. Stewart, 29, who makes her winter home in Ocala, Fla., and Laert Rapo, 34, who spends his off season in Waltham, Mass., were arrested early Saturday morning. Ms. Stewart consented to take the stationhouse breath test, with a result of .14, while Mr. Rapo refused. Bail was set for her at $500, and for him at $750.

    Benton Savage, 41, of Montauk was arrested early Tuesday on drunken-driving charges and released without bail,