SARATOGA SPRINGS Authorities believe a domestic dispute may have precipitated a murder-suicide that claimed the lives of the Bayshore Tropic Hut’s owner and her son in a small mobile home park near the Route 9P bridge at Saratoga Lake.
Police Lt. John Catone said the bodies of Patricia Ambrozak, 75, and John Ambrozak, 47, both of Union Avenue, were found inside a mobile home next to the Bayshore Tropic Hut at 12:41 p.m. Friday. Both had suffered gunshot wounds and investigators found a weapon inside the mobile home.
“Preliminarily this is going to be a domestic incident, a mother-son domestic incident,” Catone said at a news conference at the Saratoga State Boat Launch, across the bridge from the crime scene.
Catone said police are in their “early investigative stages” and declined to provide further details until after the autopsies have been completed. The bodies were taken to the Albany Medical Center hospital, where autopsies are scheduled for Saturday.
The deaths occurred at the Saratoga Lake Marine Park, a collection of 15 to 20 aging mobile homes packed tightly together next to the Bayshores Tropic Hut, a small bar with an associated marina. They are located immediately west of the bridge, where Saratoga Lake gives way to its Fish Creek outlet.
The entrance to the park remained blocked by a patrol car throughout the afternoon. Catone said the sentry was placed to protect the scene, as investigators sought the necessary search warrant from a City Court judge.
“At this point we are fairly confident there is no threat to the public,” Catone said.
Catone said a firearm was visible when police arrived, but wouldn't discuss the type of weapon used. Pending the investigation, he said, police don’t know who was the aggressor in the incident.
The mother and son were found dead by a friend of the family who went to check on them early Friday afternoon. The friend had not heard from either for several days.
Catone indicated that the mother and son had some connection with the bar, but was unsure of their relation. County property records list Patricia Ambrozak as the owner.
Her parents — Henry and Josephine Gwiazdowsk —purchased the Bayshore Tavern in 1955 and operated it for decades. The bar was not open Friday, but had done business on Sunday.
Catone couldn’t say when the mother and son were last seen alive. Police were interviewing other residents of the mobile home park, but none of those queried early Friday afternoon reported hearing gunshots.
Catone said there were no reports of gunshots in the area this entire week. State police investigators from Malta are assisting city police with the investigation.