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May 28, 2005

Snapshot: Jerry Steuerman

Img_0269Seymour Tankleff's business partner in Strathmore Bagels. Owed Seymour half a million dollars and was the last to leave a poker game at the Tankleff residence in the early morning of the murders. One week after the attacks, as Seymour lay in a coma, withdrew $15,000 from a joint bank account he shared with Seymour, named his girlfriend the beneficiary of his life insurance policy, faked his own death, shaved his beard, changed his hair weave, assumed an alias and fled to California, where he stayed for a time at the Big Sur resort. Alleged to have attempted to hire Joseph Creedon to cut out Marty Tankleff's tongue. Weeks before the murders, is alleged to have pulled Seymour Tankleff across a counter and threatened to cut his throat. While he has always publicly denied involvement in the Tankleff murders, is said to have recently told people privately, "So what, I slit their throats, what are they going to do, give me 50 years at my age?" The year following the Tankleff murders, a cabinet maker overheard Steuerman threaten a man, screaming that he'd already killed two people and it wouldn't matter if he killed another. In early 80's, son Todd Steuerman pled guilty to selling cocaine out of the bagel store, an operation in which, according to a confidential defense witness, cops were paid off not to interfere. Contradicting Detective James McCready's testimony at Marty's original trial that he never knew Jerry Steuerman, at court hearings in 2004 a baking supplies wholesaler testified he was 100% certain he repeatedly saw Detective McCready with Jerry in the bagel store in the late 70's and early 80's, well before the Tankleff murders. In the late 80's, Jerry Steuerman was represented by the current or former law partner of current Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota. For selling cocaine out of the bagel store, son Todd Steuerman was represented by Spota's law firm. To this day, Suffolk County law enforcement has never considered Jerry Steuerman a suspect in the Tankleff murders.

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