LONG BRANCH — The reward has been increased to $25,000 for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the suspects who assaulted a city police officer early Tuesday.

According to Long Branch police, a little before 2 a.m. Tuesday, Officer Michael Monohan was patrolling when he saw several people with flashlights near an abandoned building by Westwood and Bath Avenue. Monohan left his cruiser and caught one of them but was hit in the head and knocked out, according to police.

The New Jersey State Policemen's Benevolent Association's NJ Cop Shot program posted a $20,000 reward on Wednesday after Monmouth County Crimestoppers put up a $5,000 reward.

"Our thoughts and prayers are with this officer, his family, and all the officers within the Long Branch Police Department during this difficult time," NJSPA president Patrick Culligan said in a statement

Monohan is a 12-year-veteran of the department, according to police, who continues to recover from head and neck injuries. Monohan was released from Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune on Wednesday night, according to Jason Roebuck, Director of Public Safety for Long Branch Police.

The state police union asks anyone with information to call Crime Stoppers of Monmouth County at 1-800-671-400 or to text “TIPPCOP” plus your tip to 274637 (CRIMES).

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