Woman Charged In Christmas Eve Church Theft

Suffolk Police charged Michael Cuozzo and Tara Costello with multiple credit card thefts. Police additionally believe Costello was involved in the theft of a purse from St. Francis church on Christmas Eve.  Photos/SCPD

Suffolk Police charged Michael Cuozzo and Tara Costello with multiple credit card thefts. Police additionally believe Costello was involved in the theft of a purse from St. Francis church on Christmas Eve. Photos/SCPD

By Connor Beach
cbeach@longislandergroup.com

Suffolk police arrested a Greenlawn woman Tuesday who they say stole a purse during Christmas Eve mass at St. Francis of Assisi Roman Catholic Church.

Tara Costello, 45, and her partner Michael Cuozzo, 51, also of Greenlawn, have been charged with stealing multiple credit cards during a three-day span last week, according to Suffolk police.

Police arrested Costello and Cuozzo, who was not charged in connection with the theft from the church, at their home on Broadway in Greenlawn at around noon on New Year’s Day, police said.

The couple was charged with fourth-degree grand larceny for allegedly stealing purses or wallets containing credit cards from Blackstone Steakhouse in Melville and McKeown’s Pub in Huntington on Dec. 23, and from Jenny Craig in Huntington Station on Dec. 26, according to police.

Police additionally charged Costello for allegedly stealing the purse of a parishioner at St. Francis in Greenlawn during mass on Dec. 24. She was also charged with four counts of fourth-degree criminal procession of stolen property for using the stolen credit cards, police said.

Security footage from the church shows a pair of women stealing a purse from a pew as parishioners left their seats to receive Communion at the alter.

Suffolk police said no other suspects were arrested in connection with the church theft.

Suffolk police said Costello and Cuozzo were released on bail and will be arraigned at a later date.