VALLEY STREAM, N.Y. - Welcome, says Richard Tinyes, to "Hell on Horton Road." It does not look like Hell. With its neatly kept homes, Horton Road is indistinguishable from Haig Road or Roland Place or any other street in this Long Island town.
But 20 years ago, Tinyes' 13-year-old daughter Kelly Ann was killed here. Robert Golub, a bodybuilder who lived just four doors away, lured her to his home and repeatedly stabbed and sexually mutilated her. It was the stuff of tabloid headlines.
As the headlines faded, memories of the case faded, as well. But not on Horton Road.
Because the Tinyeses still live here - and so do the Golubs.
Since 1989, a state of war has existed on Horton Road. There have been disputes, skirmishes, police calls, catcalls and lawsuits. And still both families remain.
"Neither family chose to move, as if to spite each other," says author Ronald J. Watkins, who chronicled the case in a 1995 paperback, "Against Her Will."
"I'm a father. If I had a son who murdered someone in my basement, I couldn't stay in the house," he said. "In reverse, if I had a daughter who had been murdered down the street and the family remained, I don't think I could stay either."
Police frequent visitors to Horton Road
In the months and years after the murder, police were frequent visitors to Horton Road.
There was the time Victoria Tinyes was charged with driving her Cadillac at Elizabeth Golub. And then John Golub was arrested, accused of driving his car into Richie Tinyes's pickup truck. No one was ever convicted, but in all there were dozens of calls to police to mediate one dispute or another; claims of vandalism and criminal mischief were among the chief complaints.
A police spokesman said calls to Horton Road have fallen to a trickle in recent years; the last was a 2007 complaint by the Golubs that their cars had been vandalized.
The Tinyes family also filed a $600 million lawsuit against the Golubs, alleging they were negligent in failing to watch over the actions of both Robert Golub and his younger brother, John. The lawsuit went nowhere.
In the early '90s, the relatively short street of 19 Cape Cod and Tudor homes was changed from a one-way thoroughfare to allow traffic in both directions. Valley Stream Village Clerk Vincent Ang said the goal was to allow either family to enter or exit the block without having to pass by the other's home.
"As I recall, that request came from both families at the time," Ang said.
The Tinyeses say they remained in their home mostly for the sake of Kelly's brother, who was 8 at the time of the murder.
"We did look at houses, but Vickie says listen, 'I want to stay here. I feel closer to Kelly and I don't want to disturb Richie,"' the father said.
The Tinyes family held fundraisers to buy the Golub house, where Kelly Ann's nude body was found stuffed in a basement closet. "We were just going to level it." said Victoria.
No sale, said the Golubs.
The house's value then was $200,000, said Richie Tinyes, "but John Golub Sr. turns around and says 'I wouldn't sell the house for 200, 400 or a million dollars to the Tinyes family."'
And so the stalemate continued.
"We were sentenced to prison in our hearts for the rest of our lives with no chance of parole, no chance of anything," he said. "Any decent family would have moved out. They would have said, 'I'm gone."'
The Golubs did not respond to repeated requests for an interview. No one came to the door at the Golub home on a recent day. An SUV and passenger car were parked in the driveway, and shades covered every window of the two-story, Tudor home.
A Web site reported the house is currently for sale, asking price $399,000. A real estate agent advertising the sale refused to comment when contacted by a reporter.
Big news on 20th anniversary
On the 20th anniversary of Kelly's death, a first-term Long Island prosecutor reported that investigators have quietly reopened their murder investigation. The Tinyes family has always suspected that Robert Golub's brother John made the phone call that lured Kelly to the home.
Police and prosecutors at the time never accused the younger Golub of any involvement. But Richard Tinyes Jr. insists that moments before his big sister was last seen alive, he took a call from someone named "John" asking to speak with Kelly. She scampered off to the Golub house after the call, never to be seen alive again.
Now 28, Tinyes cannot say for certain that the caller was John Golub, but investigators are hoping the publicity jogs someone's memory about what happened. Without providing details, District Attorney Kathleen Rice said "there's legitimate information that we have uncovered that really has added to the mystery."
John Golub, who lives in another state, has always denied any involvement in the killing, said his lawyer, John Lewis. The attorney said he was confident the latest investigation would be another dead-end for prosecutors.
Robert Golub was convicted of murder. Now 41, he is serving 25 years to life at Green Haven Prison; he still denies that he had anything to do with his neighbor's death. He no longer speaks with his brother because of differences over the Tinyes case - differences he declined to explain in an interview with the Long Island newspaper Newsday.
He did, however, say that he was willing to talk with Richard Tinyes and express his sorrow over Kelly Ann Tinyes' death.
"She's tragedy No. 1," he said. "I'm tragedy No. 2."
Not always tragedy and sorrow
Horton Road wasn't always a constant reminder of tragedy and sorrow.
Nearly two dozen children lived on the block when Kelly was killed, recalls Pamela DeLuca, who sees the Tinyes home to her right and the Golub home to her left when she looks out her front door.
In the summertime, there were block parties, she recalls. "Everybody got together in the middle of the block. And we had Easter egg hunts. Come Halloween, we would put out hot chocolate; we would have a little party for the kids on the block. There was 23 children on this block and everybody watched out for each other and everybody was very close with each other."
Then came March 3, 1989.
"It rocked our world and changed our life," DeLuca recalls. "It could have been so different if they (the Golubs) handled themselves differently."
DeLuca's daughter, Laura, was 9 at the time and remembers Kelly baby-sitting for her family.
"We were all friendly neighbors and once this happened it ruined a part of all of us," she recalled at a recent 34th birthday celebration for Kelly, where dozens of pink and purple balloons were released skyward in tribute. "It took innocence away from all the children and it put a division between the block. You still feel that to this day.
"Kelly was such a presence that anywhere you look, you have fond memories of her and growing up with her. And then walking halfway down the street to their house, you're reminded of nothing but horror."
Tom Callahan, whose house is next to the Golubs, said except for the annual birthday celebration, most people want to put the ordeal in the past. "Nobody bothers with anybody," he said. "Except for three or four families, everybody's very quiet. They just want to get on with their lives. It's happened, it's over with, you have to move on.
"Twenty years is a long time ago."