Three New Jersey teenagers were arrested on Sunday after allegedly wrecking a stolen Mercedes-Benz into multiple police cars on Long Island while trying to evade a traffic stop, leaving five officers with potentially "career-ending" injuries, Nassau County Police Commissioner Patrick Ryder said.
A loaded 9-millimiter pistol and 15 rounds were recovered from the vehicle, which a 16-year-old was driving. A 17-year-old was in the passenger seat and another 16-year-old was in the back. All were charged with second-degree grand larceny, as well as second- and third-degree criminal possession of a weapon.
The driver was also charged with fleeing in a motor vehicle and five counts of second-degree assault.
Two of the suspects were released, while the other was kept in jail due to a warrant out of New Jersey for stealing a vehicle.
"They are hired guns by the gangs in Newark, New Jersey," Ryder said Tuesday. "They are loading them up, they are driving out here, they are committing crimes, they are reckless, they are dangerous, they are damaging our vehicles, they are hurting our cops."
Two detectives and three officers who were injured were taken to a hospital for treatment. One of the detectives suffered a concussion and the other had cervical pain. The three officers also suffered various injuries.
The incident started shortly after noon on Sunday when a detective spotted a 2020 blue Mercedes-Benz GLS 450 that was reported stolen the day before in Roslyn, a town about 20 miles east of Manhattan.
When the detective initiated a traffic stop, the driver fled and wrecked into multiple police cars before eventually coming to a stop on the Long Island expressway.
About $250,000 in law enforcement property was damaged as a result of the incident, according to Ryder.
Nassau County Executive Bruce Blakeman said it's "like New York state is invited criminals in from around the region."
"We've got 16- and 17-year-olds who, they know the difference between right or wrong," Blakeman said Tuesday. "They're committing crimes, and they're doing things like injuring police officers and destroying police property and stealing cars and involved in gang activity. In the past they were treated like adults. Now we treat them like they're little kids."