3 arrests after NYPD officer struck by motorcycle

NYPD Officer Carlos Olmedo was struck by a motorcycle and gravely injured while chasing after suspects in Brooklyn on May 16, 2010. (facebook)

May 17, 2010 5:55:41 AM PDT
Three men were arrested overnight Monday in connection with a car theft and chase that left a New York City police officer clinging to life after he was struck by a motorcycle. Family and friends of officer Carlos Olmedo are by his bedside, praying for his recovery. Mayor Michael Bloomberg says the father of three young children is in "very grave condition" at Lutheran Medical Center.

The three accused car thieves are in custody, charged with felony assault, causing injury to a police officer and criminal possession of stolen property. The three suspects were identified as Mario Koruni, Sefer Mujo and Tiku Qoko. All three are 18 and live in Brooklyn.

Olmedo's fellow officers faced a long vigil, watching over the patrolman's family as he struggled, hour by hour.

"At this point, I think it's in the hands of God," Bloomberg said.

Olmedo, 31, was struck by the motorcycle at 1 a.m. Sunday in Bensonhurst.

Home surveillance video shows Olmedo and his partner coming around the corner at 84th Street and 20th Avenue to check out a stolen Toyota. Moments later, the three suspects can be seen running from the area with the officers in pursuit. And as Olmedo crossed the street to follow the suspects, he was struck by the motorcycle.

The impact threw the officer several dozen feet.

"I heard what appeared to be a loud bang, like a gunshot or something," witness Harvey Ball said. "To me, it looked like he was out. There was no movement or any sound coming from him."

Olmedo suffered severe head trauma, along with a broken arm and leg. He needed emergency surgery to relieve brain swelling. But his wife says doctors have been encouraging.

The driver of the motorcycle suffered non-life threatening injuries. He is hospitalized and does not face any charges.

Police say the motorcycle driver had the proper license and was sober.