4 Union City cops hit by motorcycles after teen killed in crash
UNION CITY — Four police officers were struck by motorcycles and injured while investigating an earlier crash that killed a high school student.
The officers were struck by two motorcycles Wednesday night on Palisade Avenue near 31st Street in Union City. The motorcyclists went around a sign closing the street as the officers investigated a crash involving a teenage bicyclist who was hit by a garbage truck and killed.
Union City Public Schools identified the teen as Sean Lemus, an 11th grader at Union City High School. The announcement from superintendent Silvia Abbato said social workers were at schools to support students and staff. Abbato said a fundraiser for Lemus and the officers will be announced next week.
Palisade Avenue was closed overnight for an investigation into the incident. It was reopened in time for the morning commute.
Union City Mayor Brian Stack told NJ.com the garbage truck was city-owned and was collecting bulk items when Lemus hit the back of it. Stack said he was at the scene when he saw the two motorcycles revving their engines at the end of the block.
One motorcycle, driven by Ricardo Suazo, 25, of Paterson, hit the four officers and then hit the back of the garbage truck, according to Hudson County Prosecutor Esther Suarez. He was treated and released to the Hudson County Sheriff's Department and faces assault by auto charges.
Three of the officers were hospitalized while the fourth was treated and released at the scene.
Aryan Acosta-Reinoso, 24, was arrested at his home in Paterson on Thursday morning after leaving the scene. He was charged with eluding, assault and receiving stolen property. He made his first appearance in court in Jersey City on Thursday afternoon and is being held in the Hudson County Correctional Facility pending a detention hearing, which is scheduled for Tuesday.
The driver of the garbage truck remained at the scene and has not been charged.
The New Jersey State Policemen's Benevolent Association on Twitter said the officers had been taken to area hospitals. The PBA asked the community to "please pray for all the officers injured."
Information from the Associated Press was used in this report
Contact reporter Dan Alexander at Dan.Alexander@townsquaremedia.com