NYPD officer among 4 dead in Deer Park nail salon crash; driver charged with DWI

Authorities say three women and one man died after 64-year-old Steven Schwally drove through Hawaii Nail & Spa on Grand Boulevard.

Liz Burke and News 12 Staff

Jun 29, 2024, 10:19 AM

Updated 16 days ago


A man who crashed his SUV into a Deer Park nail salon and killed four people Friday has been charged with driving while intoxicated, police say.
Authorities say three women and one man died after 64-year-old Steven Schwally, of Dix Hills, drove through Hawaii Nail & Spa.
Deer Park resident Emilia Rennhack, 30, an NYPD officer out of the 102nd Precinct, was among the four killed.
Suffolk police identified on Saturday the other three who were killed as 37-year-old Jiancai Chen, of Bayside, Queens, 41-year-old Yan Xu and 50-year-old Meizi Zhang, both from Flushing, Queens.
Suffolk police also identified the nine people who were injured – 54-year-old Nicole Miele, of Dix Hills, 53-year-old Ana Garcia, of Bay Shore, 35-year-old Wen Jun Cheng, of Bayside, Queens, and 58-year-old Michael Mehale, of Deer Park. They are all being treated at area hospitals for serious but not life-threatening injuries.
Others who were all treated at hospitals for injuries include 23-year-old Carol Garcia, of Bay Shore, 32-year-old Toni Saccente, of West Islip, 37-year-old Krystal Rodriguez, of Bay Shore, 55-year-old Nicole Saccente, from Cape Coral, Florida, and a 12-year-old girl whose identity was being withheld as of Saturday evening.
Police say Schwally was driving at a high rate of speed through a Commack Road parking lot, crossed over Grand Boulevard and then plowed through the salon.
“He speeded right past me,” one witness told News 12.“I think he went up on the curb... It just happened so fast. I’ll never forget that image of him going through that glass,” said Michael McClorey, a longtime customer at the nail salon was shocked by the incident.
First responders had to rescue several victims who were trapped at the scene, according to officials.
“It's horrible. It's going to be tough for the community, tough for the volunteer fire department,” said Deer Park Fire Department Assistant Chief Dominic Albanese.
Five of the victims were taken to Good Samaritan Hospital in West Islip. Three were taken to South Shore University Hospital in Bay Shore and one was airlifted to Stony Brook University Hospital.
Dr. Christopher Raio, the chair of emergency medicine at Good Samaritan University Hospital, told News 12 that the facility was “well-equipped” to treat the injured.
Authorities say Schwally survived the crash and was taken to Good Samaritan Hospital with injuries that are not considered life-threatening. He will be arraigned in court at a later date.
“He took... four people’s innocent lives. They were alive one minute and the next minute, they’re gone,” McClorey said.

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