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Jun 6, 2019 1:03 PMPublication: The Southampton Press

UPDATE: No Arrest Made Yet After Violent Death In Montauk; GoFundMe Page Created For Funeral Expenses

Police are investigating an incident in Kirk Park in Montauk after an unconscious man was found on Thursday morning. ELIZABETH VESPE
Jun 11, 2019 9:07 AM

UPDATE: Monday, 2 p.m.

Suffolk County Police Detective Lt. Kevin Beyrer said on Monday afternoon that no suspects have been taken into custody, and the county's homicide squad is still investigating the murder that happened on Thursday morning in Kirk Park.

On Friday, members of the East Hampton Town Police Department Dive Team were searching Fort Pond for a murder weapon, but according to Lt. Beyrer, a weapon has not been recovered. Robert Casado was still alive when the ambulance arrived at Kirk Park at 7:30 a.m. on Thursday morning, but Lt. Beyrer said Mr. Casado was unresponsive and unable to speak. Lt. Beyrer said police had not yet discovered a motive for the atttack and said the investigation was ongoing.

A GoFundMe page has been created to cover funeral costs. According to the GoFundMe page, Benny Garces, Mr. Casado's father, and family are making plans for a memorial service. They will then send Mr. Casado's body back to the Dominican Republic for a funeral this weekend.

Mr. Casado, who was known as Panda, worked on weekends and nights as a cook at Bliss, the restaurant's owner, Jennifer Meadows, confirmed. The morning he was killed, however, he was on his way to another job, she said. Several people who knew Mr. Casado said he worked as a landscaper for Mickey's Lawnscapes, although the company would not immediately confirm that.

UPDATE: Friday, 1:15 p.m.

The man police believe was fatally assaulted in Montauk on Thursday has been identified as Robert Casado, 38, of Montauk.

UPDATE: Thursday, 5 p.m.

Suffolk County Police Detective Lt. Kevin Beyrer, chief of the county’s homicide squad, confirmed the victim as a Montauk resident on Thursday afternoon, and said that based on the man’s injuries, homicide detectives are investigating the crime as a murder. Lt. Beyrer said police have a “strong tentative ID” and will release the name of the 38-year-old man once the family is notified.

Police said the man was found alive and with labored breathing by two people walking on the Kirk Park trail. It is believed that the incident involving blunt force trauma occurred between 7 and 7:30 a.m., Lt. Beyrer said. He was transported to Stony Brook Southampton Hospital and pronounced dead at the hospital.

Police have not recovered a weapon, or made any arrests. The incident was said not to be gang related or a bias crime to dispel rumors going around Montauk, Lt. Beyrer said.

UPDATE: Thursday, 3:30 p.m.

A 38-year-old man found unconscious in Montauk this morning has been confirmed dead by Suffolk County Police Homicide Squad detectives, and detectives believe the cause of death to be criminal in nature, according to a press release sent out by the Suffolk County Police Department on Thursday afternoon.

East Hampton Town Police responded to the park at approximately 7:30 a.m. after a person visiting the park reported finding an unconscious man, police said. The man, who has yet to be positively identified, suffered head injuries and was transported to Stony Brook Southampton Hospital, where he was pronounced dead, police said.

East Hampton Town Police Chief Michael D. Sarlo said the victim “suffered from what appears to be blunt force trauma to the head.”

The incident, Chief Sarlo said, does not appear to be gang related or a bias crime.

Officials from the Office of the Suffolk County Medical Examiner will determine the man’s cause of death. The Suffolk County Police Department homicide detectives are conducting the investigation.

Detectives are asking anyone with information on this incident to call the Homicide Squad at 631-852-6392 or Crime Stoppers at 1-800-220 TIPS. All calls will be kept confidential.

Montauk Fire Department Chief David J. Ryan confirmed that the fire department received a call regarding an “unresponsive male on the Kirk Park trail” at 7:24 a.m. Thursday morning. Ambulance volunteers immediately responded to the scene, he said, and the man was taken to Stony Brook Southampton Hospital.

At around 3 p.m. on Thursday, Mr. Ryan said that the detectives investigating the incident had been interviewing paramedics who responded to the scene, and police officers and the Suffolk County command post were still present at Kirk Park.

Mr. Ryan said he couldn’t confirm the man’s condition, and couldn’t comment on rumors circulating around Montauk that the man may have been beaten to death in Kirk Park.


A man was found unconscious in Kirk Park in Montauk, East Hampton Town Police said at the scene on Thursday. The park, and part of Second House Road, were blocked off with yellow crime scene tape Thursday morning.

At noon, about a dozen police cars and unmarked vehicles were on the premises of Second House, including a Suffolk County command post vehicle.

Officers at the scene said they were unable to release information about the man’s condition, but said there was an investigation underway. According to a dispatcher at the East Hampton Town Police headquarters, the man was transported by ambulance to Stony Brook Southampton Hospital.

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"The incident, Chief Sarlo said, does not appear to be gang related or a bias crime."

That's an odd thing to say, why would he specifically eliminate the motivations of gang violence or bias? In fact, with no arrests, and barely any time for an investigation, why would he eliminate any possibilities?

Very strange. I certainly hope he didn't make those statements because the victim is a Latino or black.
By MoronEliminator (215), Montauk on Jun 6, 19 4:12 PM
1 member liked this comment
Does seem an odd thing to say without any context. Are there even any gangs in Montauk?
By juliacmead (11), East Hampton on Jun 6, 19 4:46 PM
Because they already know who did it.....prior history of bad blood over a senorita!
By mtkfishman (76), montauk on Jun 7, 19 8:21 AM
Not strange at all. How many residents typically die on trails in Montauk? It was a homicide, and family- or relationship-oriented motives are most common. This location implies it was not either category, and so Gang-related is a logical possibility - especially considering the heavy drug trafficking we have nowadays.
By Funbeer (273), Southampton on Jun 11, 19 8:50 PM
Besides tickets what do local cops do? Anytime there's a real crime the state or county are called. Bunch of buffoons
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Jun 6, 19 9:12 PM
1 member liked this comment
Why so much snark? Someone has been murdered! Our local cops are our kids and our neighbors - at least in East Hampton - and I have every confidence they are working through this professionally. I really don't understand the instinct to call people names in this sort of situation. It feels like our community needs to come together rather than calling names; now more than ever.
By Slightmadness (19), East hampton on Jun 7, 19 10:19 AM
Wow, even the Chief doesn't know what the cops do.
By Pacman (273), Southampton on Jun 7, 19 10:32 AM
Because we're not as as lucky as you. Southampton Village/Town cops are not always professional. One beaten, twice shy.
By deepchanel (89), Hampton Bays on Jun 7, 19 1:54 PM
Not maintaining specialized squads with the equipment, training and personnel necessary to investigate rare occurrences such as homicides saves local departments a huge amount of money.

How much more are you willing to pay to support such an infrequently used contingent? Yeah, I didn't think so, "Chief."
By VOS (1241), WHB on Jun 7, 19 5:45 PM
1 member liked this comment
Did you read the article? The East Hampton cops arent investigating Suffolk County PD is.
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Jun 7, 19 2:59 PM
The county homicide squad always leads
By Draggerman (955), Southampton on Jun 7, 19 11:33 PM
This comment has been removed because it is a duplicate, off-topic or contains inappropriate content.
By DiseaseDiocese (668), Riverhead on Jun 10, 19 6:45 AM
You dont need 6 differant police bureaus on the east end it's ridiculous. If you take traffic tickets out of the equation there isnt much happening.
By chief1 (2800), southampton on Jun 10, 19 9:50 PM
Tou are going to get yelled out b/c so many locals have someone on the local teat but you are 100% correct. WHB maintains a police force for a town that has 3300 residents for the 10 month off-season. You could cover that 3300 with a few high school hall monitors. Total waste of money on so many levels.
By Hambone (514), New York on Jun 11, 19 3:56 PM
Maybe has something to do with the last Montauk drug ring bust?
By Lets go mets (377), Southampton on Jun 11, 19 3:57 PM