Quick thinking and keen observation helped end a string of armed robberies of fruit stores and bodegas.
It also earned the police officer who made the collar the 67th Precinct’s Cop of the Month honors.
The incident occurred in the wee morning hours of Jan. 7 when Officer Dustin Edwards and other members of the precinct’s elite anti-crime team were doing an all-night stakeout looking for a perpetrator that had committed four separate gunpoint robberies of fruit stores and bodegas.
After a night of coming up empty, the plain clothes unit decided to go to Mike’s Diner on Utica Avenue and Winthrop Street at about 5 a.m..
As the cops took a seat, Edwards noticed the suspect in the robberies sitting at the counter and wearing the same clothes that fit the description of what he wore committing the crimes.
“So me and my team approached the gentleman and subsequently arrested him. He had a loaded firearm on him as well,” said Edwards. “The whole team went into the diner and was on the stakeout, but I was the first to approach him.”
Dep. Inspector Corey Pegues, commanding officer of the 67th Precinct, said that upon further investigation, cops went to the Howard Johnson Hotel on Utica Avenue where the alleged perpetrator was staying, and they recovered stolen goods and another loaded firearm.
Edwards, who has been a cop four years – all at the 67th Precinct – said the job is better than he expected it to be.
“I’ve made a lot of good friends in the anti-crime unit, which addresses violent street crime,” he said.
“Safety is the most important aspect of anti-crime along with working as a team. We usually work in groups of two or three,” he added.