Police Sgt. Timothy Brovakos and Officer Mark Shackel of the 106th Precinct were honored with the Cop of the Month award at the community council meeting last week in Ozone Park for arresting two individuals allegedly riding around in a stolen car, with a loaded gun while smoking marijuana.
Brovakos and Shackel spotted the individuals driving in a black Hyundai at 10:30 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 25, according to Deputy Inspector Thomas Pascale, commanding officer of the 106th Precinct. The vehicle was being sought by police in connection with recent burglaries in Richmond Hill and South Ozone Park.
Giving some background on the arrest, the inspector said that on Monday, Nov. 12 precinct officers responded to a home burglary in the vicinity of Lefferts Boulevard and Sutter Avenue in South Ozone Park, in which a firearm in addition to two Lexus automobiles and other valuables were stolen.
Pascale said that a witness to the burglary told police that he saw a black Hyundai or Camry at the scene.
The next morning, around the corner from where the burglary took place, two individuals were ringing door bells on the block to look for empty homes.
Pascale said that at one of the homes the bell woke the owner, who had been sleeping in the basement, but he did not answer the door bell thinking that it was a salesman.
The alleged perpetrators, believing that no one was home, climbed in a window, confronted the homeowner with a firearm and stole his car, said Pascale.
The inspector said the two cars stolen on Nov. 12 were recovered by police in the vicinity of 127th Street and 111th Avenue in South Ozone Park.
Brovakos, who was at the scene of the recovery of the vehicles, believed the thieves lived in the area.
Brovakos and Shackel returned to the area numerous times in the following weeks until they spotted the two suspects on Nov. 25 in the black Hyundai and arrested them.
Pascale said that many members of the Richmond Hill and South Ozone Park communities like to keep large amounts of gold and cash in their homes.
“The bad guys know it,” said Pascale, adding, “You can’t keep this stuff in your house.”
He suggested that cash be deposited in the bank and jewelry and gold be put in safe deposit boxes.