A legal loophole is keeping Lucali pizzeria owner Mark Iacono out of jail.
Appearing in court Thursday for an arraignment stemming from a with longtime neighborhood acquaintance, Benny Geritano, Iacono entered the courtroom using a walker, which he needed because he's still recovering from his battle wounds.
Iacono was released because of a criminal procedure law that says if a person is arrested for a felony and no indictment is brought against that person within five days, they must be let go, according to a spokesman from the Brooklyn DA's Office.
Dressed in a white v-neck t-shirt, black pants and sneakers, Iacono said nothing during the arraignment, and was surrounded by family and friends as soon as it was over. They crowded around him protecting him from photographers as he slowly made his way out of the courthouse.
"I can't say anything, thank you," said Iacono as he pushed his walker toward the door.
Iacono returns to court to potentially face a grand jury indictment on June 21.
after not being able to post $250,000 bail. Iacono was also under police custody, but at Lutheran Hospital where he was being treated.
Indictments can’t be brought against defendants unless a grand jury has been presented with the case. Neither Geritano or Iacono’s cases have been presented yet, and therefore no indictments can be brought against them.
But Geritano can’t go home yet.
Because Geritano was released from prison within the last year and then was arrested again, he has violated a federal “supervised release” order and has a federal hold on him, explained Geritano’s attorney Steven R. Kartagener in a separate court appearance today.
Geritano will now have to appear before a federal judge.
“I’m hopeful in the end a Federal District Court will recognize as the police and the DA have the possibility that Mr. Geritano was the first victim, not the initial aggressor,” said Kartagener.
Geritano is scheduled to return to Brooklyn criminal court on June 28 court to potentially face a grand jury indictment.
Iacono’s attorney is James Frocarro, and Jeffrey Levidd from the Brooklyn District Attorney's Office is the prosecutor for the case against Iacono.
Judge Linda Lopez did, however, issue an order of protection for Geritano.
"Stay away from where he works, lives...you cannot contact him in anyway," she told Iacono.
An order of protection for Iacono is also in effect.