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Cops: Drunk officer caused this horrific crash

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A drunk and possibly drugged-up cop triggered the horrific March 15 crash on Fifth Avenue that led to multiple injuries — including two of his fellow police officers, this paper has learned.

Brooklyn DA Charles Hynes said that Officer Sergio Gonzalez drove under the influence of alcohol or drugs and left the scene following Tuesday morning’s crash near Sixth Street.

The carnage began at 1:57 am when Gonzalez, a resident of nearby Sunset Park slammed his 2007 Dodge Charger into the back of a taxicab, injuring the driver, cops said.

Instead of stopping, Gonzalez sped off, rear-ending an NYPD cruiser that had stopped in the middle of the street further down the block. The Charger then spun out of control, slamming into a parked vehicle.

Andrew Lutes, a patron at the nearby Bar Reis said the crash was deafening.

“It was only noticeable because it was going so fast,” Lutes said.

Witnesses said Gonzalez appeared intoxicated as he stumbled out of the Charger, covered in dust from a deployed airbag.

Cem Kurtulus claimed the cop tried to hide a white plastic bag he had on him – something he wanted to keep away from his fellow cops.

“His jaw was twitching,” Kurtulus said. “He looked out of his mind, like the most unstable guy on earth.”

Cops said that they did not find any drugs at the scene, but they did find two hypodermic needles in Gonzalez’s charger. The officer refused to take a Breathalyzer test when he was taken into custody, officials said.

The cabbie and two cops from the police cruiser were treated for a smattering of head, neck and back injuries. The cabbie had a deep cut to his forehead that needed stitches, according to the criminal complaint.

An NYPD spokesman said Gonzalez was off duty at the time of the accident, and has been suspended from duty due to his arrest. The spokesman did not disclose how long Gonzalez had been a police officer.

Gonzalez was released on his own recognizance on Tuesday afternoon. Attempts to reach his attorney were unsuccessful.

Updated 2:37 pm, March 16, 2011
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Reasonable discourse

Joey from Clinton Hills says:
suspended with pay or without pay?

also, did they do a blood test at the jail?
March 16, 2011, 12:56 pm
Clean Air from Ft Greene says:
Wow, would a non-cop be released released "on his own recognizance" after vehicular assault, destruction of governmental property, fleeing the scene of an accident and possession of needles? Sounds fishy to me. Are Jeremy Tanner and Thomas Tracy going to just leave the story like that, or are they going down to One Police Plaza like real reporters and get an explanation from Kelly?
March 16, 2011, 5:10 pm
joe from wb says:
suspended? not jailed? douche
March 16, 2011, 5:26 pm
clm11 from Park Slope says:
Something IS fishy. Suspended thats it?? I was a witness just seconds after this crash and watched everything go down. This guy could have easily killed many people and he gets a hand slap? If NY Police are here to Protect then i don't feel safe at all.
And what happened to the person in the hit parked car that the fireman had to pull from the car and then put on a stretcher and bring to the hospital??? They found needles and then what was in the white plastic bag he tried to stash in the trash can on the corner of 6th st.? Story has some holes..
March 16, 2011, 5:33 pm
BGGB from Bed-Stuy says:
They couldn't find any drugs at the scene huh? I'm sure they looked REAL hard for them.
March 17, 2011, 8:50 am
Commenter from Park Slope says:
CLM11:

Please call Council member Brad Lander's office and tell them about what you saw. Also consider calling the New York Times and NY1 and telling them your story.

It is unacceptable that this officer has been released on his own recognizance and is out on the street, free to do this again.
March 17, 2011, 9:05 am
D from Crown Heights says:
Is it legal to refuse a breathalyzer?
March 17, 2011, 10:38 am
Sid from Boerum Hill says:
You have the power to refuse a breathalyzer but with the refusal comes a suspension of your license for at least 60 days so its technically not legal. What is supposed to happen in cases like this, is when there is a refusal and reasonable cause to believe that he was drunk/drugs, is you get a search warrant(signed by a judge) who requires that blood be drawn and analyzed.

Its not unusual for anyone who is arrested with DWI with a job and no previous record to be ror- cop or not- as long as there was no death involved.
March 17, 2011, 3:53 pm
Bob from Park slope says:
He is going to lose his job
March 21, 2011, 11:34 pm
Duly Noted from Fort Greene says:
Even if he killed someone, the NYPD would try to cover-up for him, as they did for P.O Andre Kelly last year:

"Reeking of booze, Kelly refused a Breathalyzer test. Seven hours passed before a blood-alcohol test was done and by then he was alcohol- free.

Suspecting a coverup, the NYPD suspended Kelly, Downs and Officer Robert McGinn, who gave Kelly chewing gum and two bottles of water at the crash site.

The NYPD also issued new guidelines to speed up the process of getting warrants for suspected drunken drivers who refuse Breathalyzers."

http://articles.nydailynews.com/2010-09-08/local/27074844_1_forgiveness-jail-and-five-years-vehicular-manslaughter
March 22, 2011, 11:02 am

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