By Jano Tantongco
A convicted rapist from Huntington Station has been arrested in connection with the 2013 murder of Sarah Strobel, a Walt Whitman High School graduate, Suffolk police said Wednesday.
Suffolk County Homicide Squad detectives charged 28-year-old Fernando Romualdo with second-degree murder, and arraigned him on Wednesday. Romualdo pled not guilty, according to court records.
Romualdo is serving time upstate at Mohawk Correctional Facility for a second degree rape conviction. According to the state’s Department of Corrections and Community Supervision database, Romualdo is serving a maximum sentence of three years at Mohawk.
As of Wednesday night, he was being held without bail at the Suffolk County Correctional Facility in Riverhead.
Strobel was 23 years old when she was found dead at the Froehlich Farm Nature Preserve in Huntington on Oct. 3, 2013.
In response to the arrest, Huntington Supervisor Frank Petrone issued a statement Wednesday.
“Sarah Strobel’s murder deeply affected the Huntington Station community, but if there is any solace in her tragic death, it is that she helped crystallize the community into banding together and working with the town on measures to improve the quality of life in the Station,” Petrone said. “Those improvements will be her lasting legacy."