Hamptons Police Blotter: Plank-Off Brawl, Derby Rant, McGumbus Bridge

A local media company's office plank-off ended in violence
A local media company's office plank-off ended in violence, Photo: Oliver Peterson / @oliversees

Planking Gets Out Of Control
A friendly planking competition at a local media company led to incidents of violence last week. A small group of employees were engaged in a “plank-off,” designed to see who could hold the plank pose the longest, when a disagreement broke out about what constitutes proper planking form. From there things escalated quickly, with members of the staff who were not involved in the “plank-off” taking sides and eventually engaging in an all-out brawl. Numerous injuries were reported, and officers who attended the scene described the company’s offices as “trashed.” Charges are pending.

Anti-Derby Rant Leads To Ban
Local financier and racehorse owner Sheldon Pferd-Reiter III was identified by officials as the speaker on a surreptitious recording disclosed last week. On the recording, Pferd-Reiter is heard shouting about his distaste for mint juleps, calling them “a shameful waste of perfectly good bourbon.” He then goes on to disparage wide-brimmed straw hats, wondering why anybody would wear something so absurd, and ordering his unidentified interlocutor not to dare appearing in public in such a hat. A few remarks on the recording suggest that Pferd-Reiter holds a low opinion of the “short people who ride around on horses,” and make clear his feelings for burgoo—“I’ll be damned if I’m gonna eat that rancid hell-brew this year” were his precise words. Officials in charge of the Kentucky Derby reportedly expressed outrage over Pferd-Reiter’s rant and have summarily banned him for life from all Churchill Downs events.

Bridge Work At Issue
Shelter Island residents are up in arms and have asked for a cease and desist order against Old Man McGumbus, who has formed a group calling itself “Bridging the Gap” and announced the planned construction of a bridge connecting Shelter Island to the North Fork. This announcement included the release of completed designs that foresee a massive, double-decker suspension span crossing Gardiner’s Bay between Ram’s Head and Orient Beach State Park. Unbeknownst to anyone, McGumbus and his group had already obtained state and federal funding, as well as underwriting from several as yet undisclosed banks, banks that he would only characterize as “international.” The bridge is apparently planned as a joint public/private enterprise, and proceeds from tolls charged on the bridge will flow to McGumbus and his investors as well as the state. Shelter Islanders, who have long resisted efforts to build bridges to the rest of Long Island, regardless of the fork in question, went into opposition overdrive, and the police are considering whether to issue a stop work order against McGumbus.

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