07/29/2007

N.J. officer seriously injured in car dragging

Newsday

NEWARK, N.J. — A Newark police officer was in critical condition Saturday at University Hospital after being dragged by a car, police said.

Police said Officer Cesar Estrella was dragged for about a block by a Ford Taurus after he and his partner stopped the vehicle at about 3 a.m. Saturday.

Estrella suffered severe head trauma, and had torn and ragged wounds on his face, police said. But police Detective Todd McClendon said in a statement that Estrella was expected to survive his injuries.

Soon after Estrella was injured, police arrested Alisdair Archer Jr. The 20-year-old Green Brook man was charged with aggravated assault on a police officer, eluding police, resisting arrest and other charges.

According to police, Archer lost control of his car while police were chasing him, and fled on foot before being snared in a police search of the area.

Estrella, 34, was injured only days before his 11-year anniversary on the police force.

Copyright 2007 Newsday Inc.

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