Parolee arrested and released in New York for alleged strange overnight grocery store crimes is in Pennsylvania jail on $100K bail

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Simon Reznichenko is the 35-year-old man accused of spending hours inside the Tops in Spencerport on April 26, acting like an employee and walking out with $7,000. He was charged and released.

News10NBC learned he was arrested for doing something similar at Wegmans in Greece less than a week later. On May 2, a Greece Police report says he spent overnight hours inside the West Ridge Road Wegmans in Greece and he left by stealing an employee’s car. He was charged and released.

Now, he’s in a jail in Pennsylvania accused of being in a stolen car with illegal drugs. And his bail is $100,000.

Gina Lopez is a parole officer and a leader in the union. News10NBC asked her about Reznichenko.

Berkeley Brean, News10NBC: “There was no time in between early May and early June that parole could have gone and done something with him?”
Gina Lopez, NYS parole officer and union rep: “Yes, we could have done a violation. However, again, based on Less is More with it being a new arrest and solely being released on an appearance ticket, we cannot hold him solely on the criminal behavior based on a recognizance hearing. So a judge can’t just consider the criminal behavior. They’d have to only consider is he a flight risk to return back to court?”

Less is More was part of criminal justice reform in New York designed to keep parolees out of prison. Prior to Less is More, Lopez says they could have detained a parolee who got arrested for up to 90 days.

Brean: “Even after the second arrest in Greece, you weren’t allowed to do (take him into custody)?
Lopez: “No because he was given an appearance ticket and because he was already back in the community now because Less is More, we must give him that 48-hour respond time frame to respond to us. Even if we wrote up a violation, there’s a 48-hour notice.”

There’s a court-issued warrant in Greece. The New York State Department of Corrections says they issued an absconder warrant on May 11. No one knows if Reznichenko was already in Pennsylvania.

The Warminster police chief told News10NBC they got a report of a suspicious person trying to sell pre-workout drinks outside a mall gym in Warminster. The chief says Reznichenko left in a car that police determined was stolen. The chief says they found him in the stolen car with illegal drugs. The chief also says Reznichenko initially gave them a fake name.

Here is the statement from the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision:

As previously stated, a new arrest alone can’t be the sole basis for a DOCCS warrant to be issued. The Department must gather additional clear and convincing evidence before it can be determined if there is probable cause to issue a parole warrant. Once a parole officer has completed an investigation, a supervisor will determine; if there is sufficient evidence (witness testimony, victim availability, other physical evidence, etc.) to pursue a violation of parole; whether issuing a warrant is consistent with the requirements in the law; whether a judge would consider remanding the parole violator despite the release on the criminal charge; and whether DOCCS can meet its burden of proof at a subsequent preliminary hearing within five days, as required under the law.