A 49-year-old Long Island Judge was arrested on burglary charges and is facing up to 15 years in prison, CBS New York reported. Suffolk County District Judge Robert Cicale is being accused of breaking into the home of a 23-year-old woman, who lives across the street from him, at around 9 a.m. on Thursday when she was alone to steal her underwear.
The woman, a recent college graduate, apparently lives with her parents and knew of the judge from when she interned at the Islip Town Attorney’s Office, where Cicale used to work.
Acting Suffolk County Police Commissioner Stuart Cameron stated that the woman called 911 after she heard a noise and saw the judge standing near the doorway. He went on to say that she gave police a description of Cicale, who was found two blocks away pretending he was about to knock on someone’s door.
Officials say the Long Island judge was found with several pairs of used women’s underwear, which belonged to the victim. They may have been stolen from an alleged burglary that happened either that morning or on a previous day.
Cicale is married with three young children and has a “stellar reputation throughout the court,” said defense attorney William Wexler.
The Suffolk County judge made his first court appearance on Friday and reputedly confessed to breaking into his neighbor’s home after feeling the “urge” to do so, which he followed up with a written letter of apology to his victim. He added that he snuck into the woman’s home on several occasions, opening her hamper, and stealing underwear, according to ABC 7 NY.
Neighbors were stunned after finding out about the Suffolk County District judge’s arrest and called the incident “perverted.”
One neighbor, Jay Moceri, stated that the judge is “a family man, [and] he’s always outside playing basketball with his kids. He’s always jogging. He’s always friendly to everybody in the neighborhood.”
Cicale was booked into the county jail and released after posting a $50,000 bail bond and pleading not guilty in court. He will be required to wear a GPS monitor, which is a condition of his bail.
A Nassau judge issued an order of protection that prohibits Cicale from contacting the victim. He must stay at least 100 feet away from her.