Medford Woman Pleads Not Guilty to Manslaughter, Held Without Bail

Cynthia Dean could face life in prison if sentenced as a "persistent felony offender" stemming from fatal stabbing.

A Medford woman admitted to police that she fatally her boyfriend during a fight at their home early Sunday morning, prosecutors said during an arraignment for 32-year-old Cynthia Dean Monday afternoon. 

Dean pleaded not guilty to first degree manslaugher at the hearing at First District Court in Central Islip.

Officials said Dean stabbed Melvin Garcia, 48, in the chest during an argument in the couple's Granny Road home around 2:30 a.m. on Sunday.

Dean, who wore a blue jacket and jeans at the arraignment, faces between 8-25 years in prison if convicted.

Dean has prior felony convictions, including being sentenced to two years in prison for possession of a controlled substance in Queens in 2006, prosecutors said. If Dean is classified as a "persistent felony offender," she could be sentenced to 25 years-life if convicted on the manslaughter charge.

There did not appear to be relatives of either Dean or Garcia in the courtroom Monday, although one woman, who identified herself as an ex-girlfriend of Garcia shouted, "She's a murderer" as Dean was led before the judge. 

An attorney with the Legal Aid Society, appointed to represent Dean, called the prosecutors' version of what took place Sunday morning "somewhat inaccurate."

Dean was ordered held without bail. 

Garcia's sister, Sonia Garcia, emailed Patch after the arraignment.

"I don't know what went wrong in their relationship, but my brother should not have died in such a horrible manner," wrote Sonia Garcia, who said her brother had 15 children. "It was a senseless death and now his kids will be without a father."



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