Stepson of Oheka Castle Owner Questioned in Shooting: Sources

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    Police have questioned the stepson of the Long Island mansion owner who was shot in the face earlier this year about what he might know about the attempt on his stepfather’s life, NBC 4 New York has learned. Jonathan Dienst reports. (Published Friday, Aug 29, 2014)

    Police have questioned the stepson of the Long Island mansion owner who was shot in the face earlier this year about what he might know about the attempt on his stepfather’s life, NBC 4 New York has learned.

    The owner of Oheka Castle, Gary Melius, told NBC 4 New York that his stepson Tommy has been “put through the ringer” by police for the last four months in connection with the Feb. 24 shooting outside the posh Huntington venue. Several sources close to the investigation say police are continuing to interview the victim's stepson.

    “Since the beginning there has been a concern about my son because of people he hung out with,” Melius said. “I don’t have any feeling or belief he’s involved. He’s been home and clean and good.”

    Gary Melius was sitting in his car Feb. 24 outside the sprawling, 109,000 square-foot chateau when a masked gunman appeared and shot him through the window. The mansion owner was hit in the eye, and his daughters took him to the hospital for surgery.

    The shooter fled in an older model, light four-door Jeep Grand Cherokee.

    After the shooting, police said they were questioning business, political and personal connections. They refused to comment on the case Thursday.

    At the time his stepfather was shot, Tommy Melius was in rehab after having served prison time for a 2012 fight with police following a DWI and cocaine possession arrest on the Southern State Parkway. The man's lawyer says his client denies involvement in the shooting and is cooperating with investigators.

    Gary Melius said Thursday that there was no evidence implicating his stepson in the shooting.

    He said he thinks that his political enemies might be to blame. Earlier this year, Melius' family criticized Nassau County Democratic Party Chairman Jay Jacobs, who criticized the 70-year-old's work with the Independence Party. 

    During last year’s county executive race in Nassau, Melius’ support of an Independence party candidate led in part to the influence-peddling scandal that led to the resignation of Nassau’s police commissioner.

    Melius has owned the 100-year-old castle since 1984. It served as the wedding venue for both Anthony Weiner and the oldest Jonas brother and is also a hotel that offers $1,095-a-night suites. 

    --  Greg Cergol and Tom Winter contributed to this report

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