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Cops: Officer Nicholas Guerrero in medically induced coma after being hit by fleeing suspect

Police Officer Nicholas Guerrero was injured in a

Police Officer Nicholas Guerrero was injured in a hit-and-run crash on Sept. 22, 2014 and remains in critical but stable condition. Credit: SCPD

A Suffolk officer was in a medically induced coma yesterday -- four days after being hit by a fleeing vehicle in Huntington, police said.

Nicholas Guerrero, 36, who suffered a serious head injury, underwent surgery three days ago. He was in stable condition Friday night at Stony Brook University Hospital's Neurosurgical Intensive Care Unit, according to police.

Guerrero and his Second Precinct partner, Heriberto Lugo, were in plainclothes but wearing police vests and shields when they pulled over a 2014 Ford Explorer at about 1:30 p.m. Monday on Partridge Lane, police said.

The driver, Chad Morizsan, 34, suddenly drove off at a high rate of speed, striking Guerrero and Lugo, who was later treated and released, authorities said.

Morizsan and his passenger, Nicholas Franzone, 22, were arrested later that day when they stopped to buy a television with a stolen credit card at a Target in Central Islip, according to authorities.

Authorities first said the plainclothes officers stopped the Explorer because Morizsan had an outstanding warrant, then changed that to say the vehicle was pulled over because it was stolen. Information on the warrant hasn't been released.

Morizsan and Franzone, who both gave a home address of 1 Ridings Gate in East Northport, were arraigned Tuesday in First District Court in Central Islip as more than 100 officers looked on.

Morizsan was charged with assault on a police officer, leaving the scene of a serious injury incident and other offenses. Franzone was charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

Morizsan was ordered held on bail of more than $3 million; Franzone's bail was set at $150,000 cash.

Suffolk District Attorney Thomas Spota said earlier this week that upgraded charges were expected.

Ian Fitzgerald, Franzone's court-appointed attorney, said a grand jury indicted his client and Morizsan Friday.

Fitzgerald and a spokesman for Spota's office said they didn't know the charges contained in the indictment. Morizsan's attorney could not be reached.

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