Queens Man Accused of Shooting Cop In Domestic Dispute Denied Bail
JAMAICA — The man accused of shooting an off-duty cop who tried to break up a domestic dispute was denied bail on attempted murder, assault, stalking and other charges, prosecutors said.
Jose Bernazard, 40, was arraigned in his room at Jamaica Hospital Medical Center on Thursday by Acting Queens Supreme Court Justice Deborah Modica, Queens D.A. Richard A. Brown said.
The charges stem from a string of incidents which began at approximately 10 p.m. on Sunday, June 16, 2013, when Bernazard allegedly tried breaking into a woman's home.
When she refused to let him in, Bernazard broke into her home and assaulted the woman and her 10-year-old son, the DA said.
Office Joseph Koch, who was attending a Father's Day party at his in-laws house nearby, heard the woman and her young son crying for help — and rushed to her aid, the prosecutor said.
Koch and Bernazard then struggled.
Bernazard "grabbed the officer's gun and fired a round, striking Officer Koch in the hand," according to the DA's statement.
Bernazard, an Ozone Park resident, was hit in the stomach, neck and hand, Brown said.
Bernazard was also charged with stalking the same woman for the past 18 months and assaulted her on three prior occasions — in addition to flouting an order of protection to stay away.
On Jan. 26 2012, Bernard entered the woman's home while she was sleeping "allegedly choked her and repeatedly punched her," the DA said.
"At the time of his arrest, Bernazard alleged stated to police that he 'broke the door to get in and get my stuff," Brown said.
He was charged with assault and other crimes in relation to this incident and was barred from communicating with the woman.
Bernazard is further charged with breaking that order of protection on March 23 and Dec. 15 2013 by contacting the woman and "physically assaulting her on those occasions."
“The defendant has been charged with having exhibited a total disregard for the judicial system and the law," said Brown. "He is accused of assaulting on four separate occasions a woman he once dated, repeatedly ignoring a lawful mandate to stay away from her and with shooting a police officer attempting to effect his arrest. His alleged actions clearly show that he is a threat to society.”
According to reports, Koch has since left the hospital.
Bernazard, who could face 25 years in prison, was not immediately available for comment.
He's due in court on Monday.