A Bronx resident who was convicted of assaulting police officers who were attempting to stop a drag race was sentenced to prison Tuesday. Westchester County District Attorney Anthony A. Scarpino, Jr. announced that Nathan Irizarry, 39, of Commonwealth Avenue in the Bronx, received 15 years in state prison for two counts of assault on a police officer, felonies.
Scarpino said, on November 14, 2015, at approximately 12:30 a.m., two Mount Pleasant Police Officers — Sergeant Mike McGuinn and Police Officer Luke Oliveri — responded to Route 117 near Rockefeller State Park on reports of drag racing in progress.
The officers attempted to stop a car being driven by Irizarry but he pulled away at a high rate of speed. At approximately 12:50 a.m., the police again encountered his car on Route 117. The police stopped the vehicle and ordered him out, but he refused. As the officers were attempting to physically remove him from the car, standing at the driver’s side door with the door open, Irizarry put his car in reverse at a high rate of speed.
His vehicle dragged McGuinn, who got pinned underneath the driver’s side door, about 50 yards. McGuinn was only released when an ammunition pouch on his gun belt broke off as he was being dragged.
Oliveri was hit by the driver’s side door, was knocked unconscious for a brief time and suffered post concussive syndrome which resulted in chronic daily headaches and other neurological symptoms.
McGuinn injured his shoulder which required two surgeries, his knee which suffered shattered bones and his ribs which were broken.
Irizarry fled the scene. The police officers were able to get a partial license plate as well as a description of the car and Irizarry.
An intensive investigation was undertaken by the Mount Pleasant Police Department, the New York City Police Department, the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office, the Westchester County Department of Public Safety and the Westchester County Intelligence Center.
Irizarry was arrested on February 17, 2016, after he was identified in a line up.
Oliveri, after being unable to work for 10 months, has since returned to work as a Mount Pleasant Police Officer. McGuinn has been unable to return to work as a result of his injuries.
Irizarry was remanded into the custody of the New York State Department of Corrections.