HEMPSTEAD, N.Y. — A man accused of bludgeoning his mother, sister and another woman in a deadly hammer attack on New York’s Long Island has pleaded not guilty to murder.

Bobby Vanderhall is being held without bail after his arraignment Sunday.

The 34-year-old Vanderhall was arrested Saturday on murder charges in the deaths of his mother, Lynn Reichenbach-Vanderhall; his sister, Melissa Vanderhall; and visitor Janel Simpson.

Officials said a fourth woman managed to escape and summon help.

Nassau County police say Vanderhall had a history of emotional problems, and his mother had gotten a protective order against him and had thrown him out of their Hempstead home. Police say Vanderhall used a large hammer to break through the basement door, then attacked the women.


This story has been corrected to show that the case is being handled by Nassau County police, not Suffolk County police.

SHARE
Author photo
The AP is one of the largest and most trusted sources of independent newsgathering. AP is neither privately owned nor government-funded; instead, as a not-for-profit news cooperative owned by its American newspaper and broadcast members, it can maintain its single-minded focus on newsgathering and its commitment to the highest standards of objective, accurate journalism.