A Newark police officer has been convicted of aggravated assault for striking a city resident in the face with his service weapon.

Hugo Fierro (Essex County Prosecutor's Office)

The Essex County prosecutor's office says a jury found Hugo Fierro of Newark guilty Thursday of aggravated and simple assault and official misconduct.

The 46-year-old Fierro has been with the Newark Police Department for 11 years.

Acting Prosecutor Carolyn Murray says Fierro was off-duty on May 8, 2011 when he confronted a 44-year-old married father of three in front of a Newark restaurant and struck him with his service weapon without provocation. Murray says the victim ran and told police, unaware that his attacker was an officer.

Fierro, who complained of chest pains following Thursday's verdict, faces up to 10 years in prison at his March 25 sentencing.

(Copyright 2013 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)