A Texas fugitive who police said fabricated a Flanders robbery and sparked a K-9 search was apprended last week.
According to Southampton Town police, authorities reported to a reported robbery in Flanders at 7:51 p.m., during which complaintant "Jose G. Lerma" reported that he was robbed at knifepoint by a white female who stole $350 in cash from him, smashed his cell phone to prevent him from calling the police, and then fled the area.
Several hours of searching the area by officer and a sheriff's K-9 unit for the alleged perpetrator proved fruitless, police said.
On March 3, at 1:24 am, the Southampton Town Police Department arrested Jose G. Lerma, 19, whose real name is Caris Valentin Hernandez, 24, of Flanders.
He was transported to Southampton Town police headquarters, where police said he attacked the processing officers by punching and kicking them. The officers suffered minor injuries.
Hernandez was charged with criminal possession of a forged instrument in the second degree, a felony, falsely reporting an incident in the third degree, a misdemeanor, and harassment in the second degree, a violation.
A lengthy investigation by police and detectives, with the assistance of a police interpreter, revealed that Hernandez allegedly fabricated the entire story, used a false name, and provided a forged Texas driver's license, police said.
Police said police also falsely identified himself as a member of the United States Armed Forces.
Hernandez was processed and arraigned in Southampton Town Justice Court where he was remanded to the Suffolk County Jail in leiu of $10,000 bail. He is also being held on a federal warrant, out of Texas.