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Fair Lawn Burglar Strikes Officer with Car Before Crashing Into Tree

Fair Lawn

A 42-year-old Englewood man accused of burglarizing a home in Fair Lawn struck an officer with his car before crashing into a tree.

According to authorities, police responded to a home on Garwood Road shortly before 7 p.m. after the homeowner received an alert on his phone and surveillance video showed a masked person inside.

Upon arrival, officers found a man in a parked car on Gurney Terrace. When police ordered the man to get out, he started the vehicle and sped off, striking Detective Brian Rypkema. Officials say Detective Rypkema suffered minor injuries to his hand and arm.

A patrol car spotted the car on Franciscan Way and ensued a pursuit through side streets into Glen Rock, where the vehicle struck a tree while turning onto Gibson Place. The vehicle ultimately landed on its roof on the front lawn of a home on Gibson Place.

The driver - later identified as Corey DeGroat, 42, of Englewood - got out and ran but was apprehended by officers.

According to authorities, DeGroat was transported to Valley Hospital in Ridgewood after complaining of head and chest pain.

Officials charged DeGroat with burglary, theft, aggravated assault, contempt of court, resisting arrest, reckless driving, failure to wear a seatbelt and driving on a suspended license.

Authorities say DeGroat was held at the Bergen County Jail to await a court hearing.