Police probe woman’s beheading, son’s death by train in Farmingdale

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FARMINGDALE, N.Y. (PIX11/AP) -- The investigation continued Wednesday into a possible murder-suicide involving a man who was struck by a Long Island Rail Road train and a woman who may have been beheaded.

A woman identified by police as 66-year-old Patricia Ward was found dead just before 8 p.m. Tuesday outside an apartment building on Secatogue Avenue in Farmingdale, near the LIRR station, officials said.

About 1,000 feet away, her son, 35-year-old Derek Ward was found dead on the train tracks, according to Nassau County police. His death appeared to be a suicide, but police could not immediately confirm the cause.

Patricia Ward was an assistant professor at Farmingdale State College.

Patricia Ward was an assistant professor at Farmingdale State College.

A police spokeswoman would not say how Patricia Ward was killed but witnesses said she appeared to be the victim of a beheading. They told PIX11 News they originally thought the gruesome scene was a Halloween prank.

Ward was a popular assistant professor at Farmingdale State College, according to officials.  Her son had a history of psychiatric issues over the past decade, police said, and has been arrested for gun possession and criminal mischief.



    • SandyLester

      There are those who WILL NOT understand……God knows what He is doing…be confident
      islamics the agent of satan will get what they deserve….we may not see it in the worldly but we will in the spiritual .

  • Joey

    It’s in Nassau County now.

    The police can’t posibly. Protect everyone. Protect yourself and your loved ones.

    • Ronnie Gavarian

      That’s why we should not give up our second amendment rights. These politicians are so quick to take our right to defend ourselves away, from people like this. If this woman had a gun, she would be alive today and this dirtbag would have gotten what was coming to him and our world would have been that much better for it with one less psychopath in it.

  • Orkojoker

    Witness posting on another site says guy hit by train was not the killer. He was chased by the killer after trying to intervene and ran in front of the train. Killer got away. Many witnesses at the scene. Posted on godlikeproductions.com.

  • Islam Sucks

    So two attacks from the Religion-of-Peace in New York… Expect a stern memo from D-Dag de Blasio regarding Work-Place Violence.

  • Norbit Peters

    There’s a MOSQUE less than 1/2 mile from the scene!
    Keep voting DEMOCRAT – and THIS is what America will look like!
    Remember, it’s the DEMOCRATS that are bringing these “voters” in – BY DESIGN!

    Now let’s watch how all the DEMOCRATS – following the lead of their SABOTEUR in the White House – start falling over themselves telling us it has nothing to do with Islam!

    Keep voting DEMOCRAT – and THIS is what America will look like!

    • Jack T

      Nothing to do with Muslims or Islam. Her name was Patricia Ward. Her son, not a Muslim, was a drug addict.

      You’re an idiot.

  • Jessie

    My text keeps coming back .77944. How do I resend answer lease to qualify for free rent for a year please help

  • chipgriffin777


  • Vladamir Untruksur

    “it may be a possible suicide”? Not unless this 60 year old woman had a guillotine in her home. And who has been on a murder spree lately cutting off the heads of people? Yeah, no big leap there.

  • Jack T

    Her name was Patricia Ward. She was a professor at Farmingdale State College. Her son did this. Police say he had drug and mental health issues.

    This had nothing to do with Islam or Muslims. Those of you who jumped the gun to talk about that are mentally ill and should check yourselves into an institution. You are a danger to yourself and society.

  • Appalled

    First, I find it hard to believe that there were no incidents of domestic violence reported by this mother. What certain precincts are doing is failing to take a report when domestic violence is involved or altering the report to reflect the type of incident that is not considered considered domestic violence. (An act of domestic violence warrants an immediate arrest or institutionalization. Suspects of domestic violence are arrested solely on the affidavit of the victim; no corroborating evidence is required.) Although I was not acquainted with this mother, who tragically lost her life, when the police are called to the home of a victim, some police officers demean and demoralize the victim, and frequently empower the abuser. Oftentimes, all it would take to prevent the escalation of a volatile situation is to have the police say is “You cannot do this. Next time we come we will arrest you”. However, very frequently, police do not want to come to the house to prevent the intensification of an unstable circumstance for fear of being sued for not doing their jobs properly. What the police customarily do when frequent calls are made to “911” is tell the victim of violence not to call the police anymore or to obtain an Order of Protection and have the abuser removed from the house. Thus, the mother’s choice is to abandon the child to whom she gave birth or persevere, hope the situation improves, and suffer in silence. Professor Ward was a professor for students, most of whom lead normal lives, and, fortunately are not seriously afflicted by any handicapping conditions. Imagine the embarrassment, suffering, and heartache, Professor Ward felt because her son had a problem and she could not help him. This had to hurt her immensely. When her son killed Professor Ward, he was probably out of his mind with anger, not realizing the consequences of what he was doing. Once he came to his senses and understood what he had done, he was probably filled with remorse and killed himself. Although domestic abusers appear to be bullies, they are in reality, very weak individuals, and usually they cannot live without the victim. Although I am not familiar with this mother, I am sure this mother attempted to help her son medically by communicating with her son’s doctors. Perhaps, what she said to them was neither heard nor understood. This is a sad commentary on the police department, mental health professionals and our society. Was there no one that could help Professor Ward with her problems? Let us allow Professor Ward to rest in peace with her son. It is probably the only peace that the family has experienced in a very long time. This was a tragic loss, and many of the comments posted reflect the lack of compassion, lack of understanding, and unwillingness to help those in need of financial, spiritual, or emotional support. Unfortunately, this type of insensitivity is prevalent in our society. Many people only help others in order to achieve glory in society and praise from others.

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