N.Y. officer hit during traffic stop

By John Valenti

NASSAU, N.Y. A Nassau County Highway Patrol officer suffered minor injuries when he was struck by a car during a routine traffic stop on the westbound Long Island Expressway.

Officer Gregory Celentano stopped a car Monday about 4:35 p.m. just east of Exit 39 in Old Westbury, police said. He had just exited his cruiser when he was struck by the mirror of a passing 1998 Nissan Sentra driven by John Rumac, 50, of 20 Linda Rd., Port Washington. The impact snapped the mirror off the car.

Celentano was knocked to the ground, and police said Rumac made no attempt to stop, fleeing the scene. Rumac could not be reached for comment yesterday.

A Sixth Precinct officer saw the Sentra a few minutes later on Port Washington Boulevard in Flower Hill and arrested Rumac.

Celentano was treated at North Shore University Hospital for "multiple abrasions, swelling to his left arm and muscular and skeletal strains" and released.

Rumac was charged with first-degree leaving the scene of an accident with personal injury. He was given an appearance ticket for Sept. 25 in First District Court, Hempstead. 

Copyright 2007 Newsday

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