Hazlet man held in connection with Middletown bank heist
A Hazlet man risks up to 20 years in prison without parole if convicted of Saturday's bank holdup in Middletown.
Justin Rafalko, 25, was charged with a first-degree robbery count for the heist at the TD Bank branch at about 3 PM on August 20. He was remanded to the Monmouth County Correctional Institution in Freehold, with bail set at a full $200,000.
If convicted, Rafalko would be required to serve 85 percent of any sentence meted out without parole consideration, under terms of New Jersey's No Early Release Act, according to the office of Monmouth County Prosecutor Chris Gramiccioni. He would be required to serve five years of parole supervision after release.
Investigators said that Rafalko, with no disguies, slipped a note to a teller which indicated that he was armed, and that he made his getaway on a bicycle.
Middletown and Monmouth County investigators identified Rafalko through surveillance images. Agents of the FBI's Red Bank field office were called in.
Later the same day, Keansburg police apprehended Rafalko on the section of Henry Hudson Trail in the borough, authorities said.
Criminal charges are accusations. Defendants are presumed innocent unless, and until, found guilty in a court of law.