Fairfield (NJ) On March 29, 2020, at approximately 7:15 PM, the Denville Police Department put out a radio broadcast to surrounding police departments advising that a Verizon store in their jurisdiction had just experienced an armed robbery. It was reported that the suspects were several masked, Hispanic males who fled in a vehicle with proceeds from the store.
Through investigation, it was determined that the suspect vehicle was traveling east on Route 80 in Fairfield. At this time, Officer Frank Patierno observed a 2016 Grey BMW traveling east at a high rate of speed. He pulled out and began to follow the vehicle. It apparently exited Route 80 at Squirrelwood Road in Woodland Park. The vehicle was lost temporarily but was ultimately found abandoned and running on Rockland Avenue after a witness told the officer that two masked men had just ran through her yard. The BMW was secured and it is alleged that proceeds from the store could be seen inside.
Approximately an hour later, Sergeant Frank Tracey was patrolling the residential area near where the BMW was found. It is alleged that he observed a 2012 black Toyota Camry with New York plates circling the area. The officer stopped the vehicle and further investigation revealed that the rear seat passenger of the Toyota was one of the suspects in the robbery. Both the driver and the passenger were taken into custody. Moments later, officers from the Woodland Park Police Department engaged in a foot pursuit with two suspects seen running through yards who they successfully apprehended.
“Not only are our front line officers fighting the surreptitious COVID19 virus but they also continue to be vigilant against the same criminals we face on the streets everyday who are looking to be opportunists. Hopefully this quick arrest sends a very strong message to all those who think that law enforcement can’t do two things at the same time because we can” said Chief Anthony G. Manna. “I am extremely proud of the efforts made by all of our brothers and sisters in blue” said the chief.
Authorized by: Chief Anthony Manna