A Bayside man faces murder charges for allegedly suffocating his father a little more than a year after drowning his mother, according to the district attorney.
Gregory Cucchiara, 36, has been named in an indictment charging him with two counts of second-degree murder for beating his mother over the head before submerging her in water and smothering his father to death, District Attorney Richard A. Brown said.
Giusepina “Josephine” Cucchiara’s homicide took place May 24, 2011, the district attorney said, and father Carmelo Cucchiara was killed 15 months in August 2012.
“This is a horrifying case of a young man throwing his life away and betraying the trust of his family,” Brown said. “The defendant’s actions, if true, are incomprehensible in a civilized society and must be severely punished.”
Neighbors described the Cucchiaras as “the nicest people” but said they had their own troubles with the deceased couple’s “problematic” son.
“The parents were sweethearts, but the son was a little weird. Unfortunately, he had problems,” said neighbor Rossana F., who did not want to give her last name.
Rossana said her family has a two-year restraining order filed against Gregory Cucchiara after they provided video proof to police that the neighbor was vandalizing her family’s cars and home.
She said the community was not shocked when news broke of Cucchiara’s alleged connection to his parents’ murders.
“We knew immediately when it happened to Josephine. We all said we thought it was the son,” Rossana said. “We knew someday something would happen to the father. We knew it, and he knew it.”
Neighbor Craig Guzzone said Cucchiara was “definitely a significant danger to everybody here,” but Guzzone said he did not think his longtime neighbor had murder in his heart.
“I really didn’t know he was capable of that,” he said.
Cucchiara is charged in a separate indictment, with various degrees of assault and obstructing governmental administration, for allegedly attacking two police officers last month, when they questioned him about the murders.
He is expected to be arraigned on both indictments on December 12 in Queens Supreme Court and faces up to 50 years to life in prison if convicted, the district attorney said.