A New City man stopped by police as part of a routine traffic checkpoint at the county jail Saturday morning ended up as an inmate at the jail later in the day on more than a dozen charges after a wild chase through Clarkstown that left a trail of wrecked cars and injured a police officer.
The Rockland County Sheriff's Department said Andrei Nuta, 36, of New City, intially got the attention of deputies because they discovered his driver's license had been suspended. But after the wild chase that Went from New City to West Nyack, police said they went on to discover heroin and cocaine in the car that he was driving.
As a result of the incident, Clarkstown Town Judge Howard Gerber ordered Nuta be held in the Rockland County Correctional Facility in New City on $100,000 bail.
The chase, which witnesses described as something right out of an action movie, started shortly after 10 a.m. in New City. Police said Nuta was stopped at a checkpoint at the entrance to the county jail and deputies found that his license was suspended. While being questioned, police said Nuta drove off - refusing orders to stop the car.
With police cars following him with emergency lifts flashing and sirens blaring, police said Nuta took off onto New Hempstead Road and then onto Little Tor Road. Police said Nuta eluded Sheriff's officers and Clarkstown police and made his way onto the Palisades Interstate Parkway.
On the parkway southbound, police said Nuta attempted to assault police officers by colliding into two Sheriff's vehicles at separate times. The chase continued as, police said, Nuta drover across the parkway median and entered the northbound lanes of the parkway.
By this point, State Police had also joined the chase. The chase then went into the West Nyack area and police say Nuta assaulted a police officer by colliding into his patrol vehicle, injuring the officer who had to be taken to Nyack Hospital for treatment.
In West Nyack, police said Nuta crashed into several parked cars, and the chase came to a halt when Nuta crashed into a parked car on Louise Drive in West Nyack. Nuta was then captured by the pursuing officers.
Police said Nuta sustained minor injuries and he was taken to Nyack Hospital for treatment and for blood tests to determine the substances in his system. Police said that heroin and cocaine were found in the car driven by Nuta, in addition to drug paraphernalia and hypodermic needles.
After being treated at the hospital, Nuta was arraigned in Clarkstown Town Court. He faces a hearing on Monday.
In addition to a variety of vehicle and traffic law violations, Nuta is charged with:
- Reckless driving
- First-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle
- Third-degree unlawful fleeing a police officer
- Seventh-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance
- Driving while ability impaired by drugs
- Resisting arrest
- Criminal mischief (seven counts)
- Reckless endangerment
- Second-degree assault
- Second-degree attempted assault (three counts)
- Frist-degree attempted assault.