A suspected drug dealer who opened fire during a buy-and-bust operation at a gas station on the Long Island Expressway service road in Holbrook has been charged with attempted murder, officials said Friday.
A 15-year veteran of the State Police who was conducting the drug buy returned fire, hitting the suspect four times, the officials said.
Backup officers who were moving in to assist in the arrest did not shoot, the officials said.
"This incident underscores the extraordinary risks police officers take, and I am grateful they weren't harmed during last night's violence," Suffolk County District Attorney Thomas Spota said in a statement Friday.
The suspect, Nicholas Hansen, 21, of Farmingville, fired an undetermined number of shots from a .38-caliber handgun at the undercover officer about 6 p.m. Thursday at the station on the North Service Road of the LIE at Exit 61, officials said.
Hansen was airlifted to Stony Brook University Medical Center, where he was in stable condition and under police guard Friday.
Spota said the undercover officer was assigned to the Heroin Task Force of his office. The gunfire erupted after Hansen showed four ounces of cocaine to the undercover officer and the backup team moved in, Spota said.
The charges against Hansen include first-degree attempted murder and several drug charges, Spota said. He faces up to 40 years to life in prison if convicted on the most serious charges.