We often hear sirens because we’re near a hospital and a few  major arteries. So usually I don’t think it’s got to do with our neighbourhood. Okay, there was that one time when the firetrucks stopped in front of the Porters, but they went into the church basement to do first aid until the paramedic arrived.

But I digress … was just reading the Ottawa Sun on-line and saw this article:

Takedown at Thai eatery –Edmonton cop takes would-be thief to ground with a chokehold at Wellington St. restaurant

When Tom Gon pinched the inside of his elbow around the thief’s neck as they rolled onto the floor of an Ottawa Thai restaurant, they both knew it was over.

“I’m a grappler,” Gon explained yesterday. “As soon as I get a guy on the ground, he’s mine.”

Gon, 53, is an Edmonton Police Service vice squad sniper who’s visiting Ottawa for business and to see friends, including Edie Germain, his girlfriend.

He flew into Ottawa around 6:30 p.m. on April 9, and looking for a bite to eat, the couple went to the Siam Bistro on Wellington St.

They sat at a table near the middle of the narrow dining room, feasting on plates of green curry, chicken and shrimp.

Germain noticed some clamour in the front entrance, followed suddenly by an “airborne” server, who was thrown across the small room by a man dressed head to toe in black.

Germain insisted Gon spring into action.

He grabbed a chair and approached the entrance to confront the thief, who was rifling through the register.

The man was about 6-foot-1, 170 lbs.

Gon is 5-foot-9, 220 lbs., and in his words, “all meat.”

Without thinking twice, Gon put the man in a bear hug and brought him to the floor, which was now covered in cash.

The man head-butted Gon in the face.

Gon squeezed his bicep around the guy’s neck.

“Understand,” Gon told the man, “you’re not getting away from me.”

And by the way, Gon added, “I’m an officer.”

Gon looked up to find patrons of the nearly full bistro gawking at the spectacle, as if it was the main event on an Ultimate Fighting Championship card.

Meanwhile, Germain was worried that no one was calling 911 so she quickly dialled the number. She almost regretted telling Gon to go after the thief.

“I was scared,” she said. “I didn’t know if he had a weapon.”

But there was no way the man was getting out of Gon’s chokehold. The man’s body relaxed in surrender.

Ottawa police arrived about six minutes later and took the suspect into custody.

Police have charged Stephen Cocks, 50, of Ottawa with robbery, failing to comply with conditions and assault with intent to prevent arrest.

The waitress who was thrown across the front entrance wasn’t hurt.

Gon, a 30-year veteran cop, walked away with a small cut on the side of his nose and some cuts on his legs.


“I’m very grateful he was here at the right time and the right place,” restaurant owner Montha McGinnis said. “He holds a special place in my heart.”

When Gon was done giving his statement to police that night, he joined Germain back at their table and dug back into their green curry.

The place was still simmering with excitement.

“We had a couple of beers,” Germain said, “and a standing ovation.”