By Mara Certic and Stephen J. Kotz
Springs resident Valon Shoshi was arrested on four charges following a manhunt by East Hampton Town Police on Friday, October 3, and was released on $25,000 bail after appearing in East Hampton Town Justice Court on Saturday.
Mr. Shoshi, 28, was charged with felony reckless endangerment as well as illegal discharge of a weapon, assault and possession of a loaded gun in a motor vehicle, three misdemeanors.
On Friday morning, Mr. Shoshi reportedly fired a shotgun several times in his bedroom at 85 Gardiner Avenue in the Springs section of East Hampton. According to the police, his mother suffered minor injuries as a result and was sent to Southampton Hospital for treatment. Mr. Shoshi then allegedly fled the house with the gun in tow in a new Cadillac sedan.
According to Captain Chris Anderson of the East Hampton Town Police, a family member contacted the police following the incident.
The police initially had information that indicated Mr. Shoshi had fled the scene and gone to a secondary residence. After police determined he was not at that location, they managed to establish communication with Mr. Shoshi and he was stopped in his vehicle on Springs Fireplace Road near One Stop Market and put into custody without incident.
During the manhunt, nearby schools and some facilities in the immediate area were asked to go into lock-down as a precaution. Sag Harbor, Springs, East Hampton and Wainscott school districts all were in what the police call “locked-in status” on Friday morning.
Capt. Anderson said it was of “paramount importance” to the police department to protect the schools until they determined what the threat was.
“It’s a big sigh of relief,” said Sag Harbor Superintendent Katy Graves in describing how she felt when police called to say the lockdown could be lifted.
She said that school officials were still in the middle of implementing the lockdown when they were informed they could go back to normal business. Ms. Graces said the district immediately sent an automated telephone and text message to the school community informing it of what had occurred.
“I’m very proud of my staff,” she said. “They were all so child-centered and proactive.”
Capt. Anderson added “the school districts as a whole did a tremendous job.”
Mr. Shoshi, moved to East Hampton from Kosovo with his family in 1999. He attended East Hampton High School and is an accomplished boxer. He volunteered in the Springs Fire Department, was assistant chief of the East Hampton Village Ambulance Association, and also worked as an aide in the East Hampton School District.
According to Edward Burke Jr., Mr. Shoshi’s attorney, his client’s family and many other community members were at court on Saturday in his support.
“His entire family, including his mom, fully support Valon,” Mr. Burke said. “They are entirely behind him in this journey through the criminal justice system.”
Justice Lisa R. Rana, who heard Mr. Shoshi’s case on Saturday, released him on $25,000 bail under the condition that Mr. Shoshi undergoes an immediate psychological evaluation.
Mr. Burke said on Wednesday that his client is cooperating fully and has been in counseling. He and his client will report to the court today, October 9 to inform the court he has been seeking counseling, as ordered by Justice Rana.
Mr. Shoshi will appear before court on Thursday, October 30.