East Hampton Duo Facing 15 to 25 Years

Two East Hampton residents accused by Sag Harbor Village police of possessing large amounts of narcotics after a traffic stop December 30 on Suffolk Street Extension remain in jail this week, ineligible for bail due to the serious nature of the top charge they are facing: felony narcotics possession in the first degree.

Veronica Zill, 23, and Bernard Kulick, 28, would automatically be sentenced to 15 to 25 years each in state prison if convicted of that single top charge. They are each facing four additional felony possession charges, three of those for different drugs police said they found in significant quantities after a search of the 2004 GMC Yukon the two were in at the time of the stop. The search was made after police reported the strong smell of marijuana in the Yukon. Police reported finding in the vehicle over 14 ounces of marijuana, 19 grams of heroin, and over 16 ounces of an opioid, hydrocodone. In addition to the felony possession charges each are facing, they are also charged with another felony, possession with intent to sell, as well as several misdemeanor possession charges, for various controlled drugs found in lesser amounts, according to police.

Zill’s home address was listed by police as Carriage Lane in East Hampton. While police listed Kulick as having a San Diego address, he has longtime roots in East Hampton, with family members living at the same address as the one given for Zill.

It is not the first time Kulick has been arrested in East Hampton on felony drug possession charges. On New Year’s Eve, 2007, at 17 years old, Kulik was charged with two counts of felony possession of narcotics. He was ultimately granted youthful offender status, so the final disposition of that case was sealed by the court.

In August 2017, Kulick was charged by town police with misdemeanor drug possession, which he ultimately pleaded guilty to, and was fined $1000.

Zill does not appear to have a record, at least on the local level.

After their arrests, both were taken to the hospital, but for different reasons: Police said Kulick appeared to be suffering from withdrawal symptoms, while Zill allegedly had concealed a packet of marijuana in her vagina. The packet was removed at the hospital, while Kulick was treated for his symptoms, and both were ultimately released back to the police.

For their arraignments, Zill was represented by Wendy Russo, an attorney from the Legal Aid Society, while Kulick was represented by an attorney appointed by the court, Carl Irace. Both attorneys chose to waive the clients’ right to be released if not indicted by January 4. This will allow both attorneys the opportunity to negotiate a deal for their clients, without the threat of an indictment hanging over them, while the two remain in jail. The case would almost certainly have been presented to a grand jury for an indictment if the two attorneys had not entered their waivers.

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