NY cop critically hurt in traffic stop stabbing, suffers ruptured artery

A retired NYPD officer who happened to be passing by helped responding officers apply a tourniquet and get the suspect under control

By Wes Parnell
New York Daily News

SUFFOLK COUNTY, N.Y. — A Long Island cop was stabbed by a suspect during a traffic stop, leaving the officer in critical condition with a ruptured artery, officials said Sunday.

Suffolk County Officer Christopher Racioppo spotted Jonathan Nunez speeding erratically in a 1999 Mercedes-Benz with the headlights off in Patchogue Saturday night, authorities said.

Racioppo tried to pull Nunez over but he kept going, eventually crashing into a 2004 Nissan at the intersection of South Ocean Ave. and Brook St. in Patchogue around 10:40 p.m., sources said.

Nunez, 25, abandoned his crashed car and ran off but Racioppo was able to catch him, tackling him in the front yard of a home, officials said.

During the scuffle, Nunez, who lives in Centereach, allegedly pulled out a knife and plunged it into the cop’s leg, slicing a major artery, police said.

The gruesome cut went all the way to the bone, severing veins, the artery, and heavily damaging muscle, sources said.

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Responding officers and a good Samaritan retired NYPD officer who happened to pass by were able to pin Nunez to the ground while tying a tourniquet on Racioppo, who had already passed out from blood loss, sources said.

Medics rushed the wounded cop to Long Island Community Hospital. He was quickly transferred to Stony Brook University Hospital where he underwent emergency surgery and is currently in critical condition, officials said.

“We extend our thoughts to Officer Racioppo and ask all Suffolk County residents to keep him and his family in their prayers as the circumstances remain critical,” said Sunday.

“These are some of the things we have been talking about over the past year. As elected officials try to demonize police officers they don’t realize the inherent danger these men and women face when they don the uniform.”

Nunez was charged with aggravated assault on a police officer, driving while intoxicated and resisting arrest. He was taken to Long Island Community Hospital for an evaluation and is set to be arraigned in the coming days, officials said.

Nunez plead guilty to a strangulation charge in January 2020.

The driver of the Nissan Nunez struck was transported to Stony Brook University Hospital for minor injuries, officials said.

(c)2021 New York Daily News

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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