Faces 25 To Life For Cypress Hills Slay
Jurors in Brooklyn convicted an Ozone Park man last Wednesday, May 29, for his role in the fatal shooting of an officer from the 75th Precinct during a botched home invasion in Cypress Hills in December 2011, it was announced.
Kevin Santos, 32, of 85th Street faces up to 25 years to life behind bars after being found guilty on second degree murder and first-degree burglary charges in the Dec. 12, 2011 incident resulting in the death of P.O. Peter Figoski.
The verdict against Santos came five days after another Ozone Park man-Nelson Morales, 29, of 84th Street-was convicted on the same charges. Morales and Santos are scheduled to be sentenced on June 20, according to Kings County District Attorney Charles J. Hynes.
Figoski was shot in the face by a cohort of the two suspects-Lamont Pride, 29-while police responded to the reported home invasion on Pine Street between Ridgewood Avenue and Etna Street at around 2:15 a.m. on Dec. 12, 2011.
As previously reported, Pride and Santos came to the location at around 2 a.m., knocked on the entrance to an apartment and falsely identified themselves as police in order to gain entry. Once inside, the suspects allegedly demanded and robbed valuables from the tenant before pistolwhipping him.
Figoski and his partner-P.O. Glenn Estrada-were among backup units from the 75th Precinct that responded to the home invasion after police received a 911 call about the incident.
Reportedly, Figoski was shot once in the face by Pride as he and Santos ran out of the location. Estrada, who initially tackled Santos but let him go after seeing Pride shoot his partner, caught the gunman following a brief pursuit.
Figoski was rushed by paramedics to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, where he died later that morning. He was posthumously promoted to the rank of detective by Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly. Estrada was also later promoted to detective for his efforts to stop Pride.
Santos, Morales and two other Ozone Park residents were collared by police in the hours that followed the shooting. According to Hynes, another of the four suspects-Ariel Tejada, 22, of 89th Street-previously pled guilty to murder and burglary charges “and testified against Pride, Morales and Santos.”
The fourth Ozone Park suspect in the case-Michael Velez-was acquitted on burglary and murder charges in February of this year.
Deputy District Attorney Kenneth Taub, chief of the Homicide Bureau, and Assistant District Attorney Howard Jackson, counsel to the Homicide Bureau, prosecuted the case.