Police officers affiliated with the Brooklyn South Task Force, as well as the 62nd Precinct, were in the spotlight, honored as the precinct’s “Cops of the Month” for May.
At a joint meeting with the 68th Precinct, held at the Knights of Columbus hall, 13th Avenue and 86th Street, Captain Michael Deddo, Lieutenant Michael Wheeler, P.O. John Dixon, P.O. Joseph Curcio and Detective Gilberto Alonso were toasted for their success in nabbing a serial burglar on the very day that a comprehensive plan for his capture was put into effect.
“The plan was executed flawlessly,” stressed Deputy Inspector John Sprague, the 62nd Precinct’s commanding officer.
The plan was developed by the precinct, in conjunction with Brooklyn South Task Force, to respond to a spike in burglaries that started occurring the end of April. These burglaries were particularly concerning, because they were taking place in the late−night and early−morning hours, when the people being burglarized were at home, said Sprague. In addition, the burglar appeared to be targeting the elderly, he said.
“On several occasions, people woke up and startled the burglar, who was not confrontational and quickly exited the premises,” Sprague recounted. “Our worst fear was that someone would be hurt during a burglary.”
The plan was put together during the day on May 7, and “put into effect” that night, in the early−morning hours, when there was a report of a burglary on 66th Street, near 20th Avenue, Sprague said. When the burglar fled the premises, cops “set up a nice perimeter” to prevent him from escaping from the area. When he finally emerged, he was taken into custody by Wheeler and the two police officers, who found the laptop computer and purse he had stolen nearby.
When the suspect was brought into the precinct, Alonso questioned him, Sprague said, and discovered that he was a level three sex offender on parole for three more years. “At this point, we were able to violate the parole,” Sprague said, and put him back into prison, as the district attorney’s office put the burglary case against him together.
“We believe he was responsible for 10 burglaries we had put into the pattern,” Sprague added. “They got the bad guy off the street.”