Elizabeth pedestrian strike, officer use of firearm under investigation

An incident in which an Elizabeth Police Department lieutenant used his service weapon against a motorist who was driving toward him just after striking a pedestrian outside a crowded nightclub is under investigation, acting Union County Prosecutor Grace H. Park announced Monday.

It was shortly after 3 a.m. Sunday when the police lieutenant and one other uniformed officer on security detail at The Lobby on Spring Street in Elizabeth responded on foot to a report of a fight outside the restaurant, according to the investigation. While the two officers approached the scene, the suspect vehicle struck the victim, an adult male, then continued in the direction of the officers, going the wrong way down a one-way off-ramp.

The police lieutenant fired a single round from his service weapon before the suspect vehicle quickly left the area, heading north on Routes 1&9. It is unknown whether the round struck the vehicle or its occupant or occupants, although no one aside from the pedestrian who was struck by the vehicle was known to be injured at the scene.

Members of the Union County Prosecutor’s Office Special Investigations Unit, the Union County Sheriff’s Office Identification Unit, and the Union County Police Department responded to the scene to initiate the investigation. The injured pedestrian was transported to Trinitas Regional Medical Center and subsequently released, while the suspect driving the vehicle in question remains at large.

Anyone with information about this incident is being urged to contact Prosecutor’s Office Sgt. Cassie Kim at 908-527-4551.