Utica Man Arrested

According to Oneida County Sheriff Robert Maciol, a Utica Man was arrested after he entered Oneida County owned property and turned off the power to Communication Towers. Local Police agencies and the Oneida County Sheriff’s Office was notified of someone turning off power to two County owned Communication Towers that are used by Emergency services, one in the City of Utica and one in the Town of New Hartford. These power outages happened at about noon on October 16, 2021. Through investigation and with the assistance of many other agencies it was determined that this was an intentional act by someone entering the fenced in areas of the towers to access the power source.

The investigation also discovered that Nathaniel C. Sergio, 39, of Utica was at both locations of the power outage at the same time as the power outage was discovered. Sergio was previously placed on “House Arrest” overseen by Herkimer County Probation that required him to wear a GPS Ankle Bracelet to monitor his location and movements. With the assistance of Herkimer County Probation, the Bracelet Monitor System provided GPS location at the towers when the power was turned off. The Bracelet was also utilized to determine the location of Sergio as he was driving on Oriskany Boulevard, and was taken into custody after a vehicle stop near the intersection of Clinton Street by the Oneida County Sheriff’s Patrol at about 3PM.

Sergio was charged with two counts of Criminal Tampering in the first degree, a class D felony. Sergio was taken to centralized arraignment at CAP Court, where he was committed to Oneida County Jail in lieu of $6,000 cash bail. Three other Cell Phone towers in the area also suffered similar power outages during the same time period, and those charges are currently pending.

The Oneida County Sheriff’s Office conducted this investigation with the assistance of the Utica Police Department, The New York State Police, The New Hartford Police Department, Whitesboro Police Department, and the Herkimer County Probation Department.

In December of 2020, Sergio was charged with similar counts as he was damaging cell phone towers in both Oneida and Herkimer Counties, those cases are still pending.