Former New York Police Officer Sentenced To Four Consecutive Life Sentences For 2016 Quadruple Murder

By DOJ

Photos: YouTube Screenshots

Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced that Nicholas Tartaglione was sentenced today to four consecutive life sentences for his leadership role in the 2016 murders of Martin Luna, Urbano Santiago, Miguel Luna, and Hector Gutierrez.  Tartaglione who is a former police officer, orchestrated the kidnapping and murders of all four victims on April 11, 2016. 

Tartaglione was sentenced Monday by U.S. District Judge Kenneth M. Karas.

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said: “Nicholas Tartaglione brutally and senselessly murdered Martin Luna over money, and then ruthlessly executed Urbano Santiago, Miguel Luna, and Hector Gutierrez simply because they were in the wrong place at the wrong time.  He tried to cover up his crimes by burying all four victims in a shallow grave on his property.  Thanks to the tireless efforts of countless law enforcement officers at the federal, state, and local level, and the relentless pursuit of justice by the career prosecutors in my Office, Tartaglione has now been held accountable for his reprehensible crimes.  Today’s sentence of four consecutive life terms justly reflects the pain and suffering each victim underwent at Tartaglione’s hands.  I hope that this outcome brings some measure of closure to the victims’ families and to their community.”

According to the allegations contained in the Indictment, the evidence offered at trial, statements made in open court, and matters included in public filings:

On April 11, 2016, Nicholas Tartaglione, a former police officer, orchestrated the kidnapping and murders of Martin Luna, Urbano Santiago, Miguel Luna, and Hector Gutierrez.  Martin was 41 years old when he died.  Urbano was Martin’s nephew by marriage and was 35 years old when he died.  Miguel was Martin’s nephew and was 25 years old when he died.  Hector was a close family friend of all three and was 43 years old when he died.  All four victims left behind a loving family, and many of their family members attended the trial in this case.

Martin was killed because Tartaglione believed Martin had stolen approximately $250,000 meant for the purchase of cocaine. Tartaglione tortured Martin by restraining him and beating him for over an hour, but when Martin did not provide the location of the missing money,Tartaglione strangled Martin to death with a zip-tie.  Urbano, Miguel, and Hector were killed — each with a single gunshot to the back of the head, execution style — because they witnessed Martin’s murder and were in the wrong place at the wrong time. Tartaglione buried all four victims in a mass grave on his remote property in Otisville, New York.  The four victims remained in the ground until the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s (“FBI”) Hudson Valley Safe Streets Task Force located the grave in December 2016.

At Monday’s sentencing, Judge Karas described Tartaglione as a “monster” who has shown no remorse for his conduct.

Tartaglione, 56, of Otisville, New York, was found guilty of 11 counts of murder, four counts of kidnapping resulting in death, one count of kidnapping conspiracy, and one count of narcotics conspiracy.

Mr. Williams praised the outstanding investigative work of the FBI, the New York State Police, and the Village of Chester Police Department.  Mr. Williams also thanked the City of Middletown Police Department and the Houston, Texas Police Department for their assistance in the case.

This prosecution is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (“OCDETF”) operation.  OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles criminal organizations using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach.  Additional information about the OCDETF program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

 

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