Shortly before 4 p.m. on Sunday NYPD officers pulled an ATV rider over near Pitkin Avenue and Lincoln Avenue in Brooklyn. According to the police department, the man “was stopped by officers for driving erratically. As the officers approached, the suspect attempted to leave the scene and dragged one of the officers, running over his leg as he fled.”
The scuffle left the police officer with a broken vertebra, a fractured nose, a cut-up leg and a bruised face, but the rider got away. That night, the New York Post, acting on information leaked from anonymous NYPD sources, erroneously announced the police got their man: “the driver was later found hiding in a car atop a raised lift in a local auto-body shop, the sources said.”
But that was a big mix-up: according to the Daily News, the police “arrested a 23-year-old Brooklyn man and charged him with attempted murder of a police officer and numerous other charges. But shortly later, they said they had arrested the wrong man.”
Here is the guy they are now looking for:
A witness told the Daily News ATV riders are a weekend fixture in the neighborhood: “They come up around on Saturday and Sunday and drive all around here,” Rosetta Sutherlan said.
A Sunday tradition is how one rider from Harlem described a similar event in 2011. “Come down here and get blessed–know what I mean? Like you go to church on Sunday, get your little holy baptize and all that. Dip you in the water.”
In New Jersey, where ATV and dirt bike riders have often been at odds with police officers in recent years, officials have been looking for legal alternatives to riders using public streets. Last week the city of Millville in southern New Jersey finalized a sale of 100 acres for an ATV park. It is one of three new ATV parks in the state.