Stark’s charred body was found in a dumpster outside of the Long Island Hebrew Academy on January 3, the day after he was seen on surveillance video being assaulted and dragged into a white minivan, though identification of the remains took police investigators several days.
Felix, a construction worker who had worked for a contractor hired by Stark in the past, admitted to police that he and his family members planned to rob Stark because he was known for carrying large amounts of cash.
But the robbery went awry when one of Felix’s relatives sat on Stark to subdue him and accidentally suffocated the struggling landlord.
Panicked, the group quickly came up with a plan to dispose of the body, choosing to set his corpse on fire in hopes to destroy any evidence connecting them to the crime. But after four months of searching, police were able to make that connection using evidence recovered from the van they suspected to be used by the assailants.
Shortly after charges were raised against Felix, Assemblyman Joe Lentol, who introduced legislation in the Assembly in March to expedite victim ID processes in response to Stark’s murder, released a statement lauding the NYPD for its months-long effort to bring Stark’s murderers to justice.
“I want to commend the 90th Precinct and the rest of the NYPD for their relentless effort in finding the suspect of this heinous act,” he said. “Hopefully the family of Menachem Stark will be able to find some sort of closure once the perpetrator is brought to justice.”
No other charges have been brought up yet in the case, though police are questioning two other suspects connected to the case through evidence found in the van police believed to be used to carry out the botched robbery.