Police & Fire

Cops with Dogs Nab Four From Philly in Roxbury Burglary

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Morris County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Sigmund is a 9 year old Belgian Malinois certified in patrol and explosive detection Credits: Morris County Sheriff's Office
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ROXBURY, NJ – Four Philadelphia men who broke into a Ledgewood motorcycle dealership early Thursday were tracked down with the help of police dogs and arrested, police said.

The men, Leon Foote, 18, Robert Vidra, 26, Angel Torres, 21 and Kyle Prit, 20, were charged with a number of crimes including burglary, criminal attempt, theft, resisting arrest, conspiracy and criminal mischief, police said.

The incident began at 2:12 a.m. when Roxbury police responded to a burglar alarm at Ledgewood Powersports at 1368 Route 46 East, according to police. They said Robxury Police Sgt. Steven Catalano, Patrolman Nicholas Ponomorev, Patrolman Brett Barbera and Patrolman Steven Strowbridge saw the four men running from the establishment.

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“A foot pursuit ensued and officers set up a perimeter to contain the subjects,” police said. At that point, the Roxbury officers called for the assistance of police from Mount Arlington and Netcong as well as the Morris County Sheriff’s Office K-9 Section, police said.

Morris County Sheriff’s Office Det. Sgt. Aaron Tomasini came to the scene with patrol dog K-9 Sigmund to help with the search for the burglars, police said.

“Following a trail of human scent, K-9 Sigmund was able to track over 50 yards in heavy brush and located and arrested two subjects,” they said. “K-9 Sigmund then continued to track human scent in the nearby area resulting in the apprehension of two more subjects. “

Another police dog, K-9 Loco, also helped at the scene, along with Morris County Sheriff’s Office Detective Michael Carbone, a police dog handler, police said. They noted that Morris County Sheriff’s Office Detective Chrissy Kovacs, from the department’s criminal investigation section, assisted at the scene. 

Roxbury Police Chief Marc Palanchi, in a statement, commended all the officers who responded, including the dogs, citing their “swift response, quick thinking and effective execution” of the search and arrest.

“We are incredibly lucky to live in a county with such outstanding resources available to us,” Palanchi said. “The teamwork between our patrol officers, neighboring towns and the Morris County Sherriff’s Office is what led to the quick arrest of these individuals.”

Morris County Sheriff James Gannon praised his office’s “partnership” with Roxbury police and the work of his investigators.

“Our K-9 and CIS programs are second to none,” Gannon commented. “This was a perfect example of the synergies in law enforcement which led to the quick apprehension of four suspected criminals intending to steal from our businesses. This isn’t tolerated here in Morris County.”

Roxbury Police Spokeswoman Jennifer Dillard said the foursome "broke in but never got the opportunity to take anything because patrol responded so quick." The business sells Kawasaki, Sea-Doo, Can-Am and Polaris vehicles, accessories and other equipment.

The arrested men were placed in the Morris County jail pending court appearances, police said.

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