A Brooklyn man allegedly involved in a drug deal that went awry Tuesday night, leading to the wounding of an NYPD detective from Long Island, has been charged, officials said.
The injured officer, Jon Gladstone, 36, of Nassau County, was hit once in the left shoulder by a bullet police believe was fired by another officer. He was initially taken to Elmhurst Hospital and was moved Wednesday to the Hospital For Special Surgery in Manhattan in stable condition, said an NYPD spokesman.
Oscar Vera, 45, of Humbolt Street, was identified by law enforcement officials as the man who was driving a car at the intersection of Troutman Street and Wilson Avenue in Bushwick just before 6:15 p.m. on Tuesday when narcotics detectives approached the vehicle in what investigators said was a routine buy-and-bust. Suddenly, the driver began backing up, rammed a police car and then attempted to drive away with Gladstone hanging on, police said.
A total of four shots were fired by officers, and as of late Wednesday investigators had not found any weapons that may have been in the possession of the suspects. Vera was hit in the leg and wrist and was treated at Bellevue Hospital where he was in stable condition. The car, with Gladstone still holding on, went a short distance, hitting another vehicle, and then stopping, according to first deputy commissioner Benjamin B. Tucker.
Vera is charged with assault of a police officer, resisting arrest, reckless endangerment and drug sale and posession. A second man taken into custody right after the incident was released Wednesday and will not face charges, said police. Another suspect was still being sought, according to police.
The wounding of Gladstone marked the sixth time this year that a NYPD officer had been shot in the line of duty. Last month, Officer William Reddin of Lynbrook is believed to have been hit by friendly fire in the Bedford-Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn although bullet fragments recovered have not allowed investigators to come to a definitive conclusion. In January, Officer Sherrod Stuart was wounded in the leg by friendly fire during an anti-crime operation in the Bronx. Both Stuart and Reddin are recovering.
Gladstone, who joined the NYPD in January 2005 and is assigned to the Brooklyn North narcotics command, has more than 500 arrests to his credit, said police spokesman Brendan Ryan. Gladstone also has 10 awards for excellent police work and two citations for meritorious duty.
With Alison Fox, amNewYork and Ellen Yan