BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – Buffalo police officer Jonathan Negron spent more than a week in a medically induced coma last month after suffering severe head trauma during a police chase. Friday, he was released from the hospital.
Negron, 29, is a two-year member of the force. He was responding to a call of a vehicle with four people inside who had a gun on June 3 when the vehicle fled and a chase began. The car Negron was chasing eventually struck a light pole, which fell and crashed through Negron’s car, striking him in the head.
On June 13, Negron came out of the coma and was reported to be alert, breathing on his own and able to talk with a low voice. He was “even cracking a couple of jokes,” the Buffalo Police Benevolent Association said.
Friday, more than a month since the accident, Negron was able to walk out of the hospital. A contingent of family, friends and fellow officers gathered at ECMC to applaud his recovery.
“Obviously, we’re hoping for a full recovery he’s made incremental progress throughout, so we’re just gonna keep praying, keep our fingers crossed and hope for a full recovery,” said John Evans, president of the Buffalo Police Benevolent Association.
Negron is 29, and right by side today was his fiance who is also a Buffalo Police Officer holding their infant son. She was there on duty at the scene that day last month… when his prognosis was uncertain..
The family of Officer Negron released a statement thanking the Buffalo Police Department for their support and thanked the staff at Erie County Medical Center for their “amazing care.”
“On behalf of Jonathan Negron and his family I would like to thank Mayor Byron Brown and the command staff of the Buffalo police department for their continuous support of our family, and also all the officers and detectives involved in the incident. The family would also like to thank all the staff at ECMC for the amazing care Jonathan received and the support that they showed us through this difficult time. The past 35 days have been very hard on all of us and we can not express more deeply how grateful we are for the support of all the men and women of the Buffalo police department, the Erie county sheriff’s office, and all the local departments. The support of the community has been overwhelming and on behalf of the Negron family, the Taborn family and Jonathan himself we thank each and every one of you very much.”The family of Officer Jonathan Negron
The driver of the car that hit the light pole was a 16-year-old from Rochester, Erie County District Attorney John Flynn said last month, and the car was believed to be stolen.
The driver was charged with Assault on a Peace Officer, Police Officer, Firefighter or Emergency Medical Services Professional, which is a Class C violent felony, and Unlawful Fleeing of a Police Officer in a Motor Vehicle in the Second Degree, which is a Class D felony. The charges carry a maximum of 15 years in prison.
Fynn said no guns were recovered from the car and none were found on any of the suspects.
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Nick Veronica is a Buffalo native who joined the News 4 team as a Digital Executive Producer in 2021. He previously worked at NBC Sports and The Buffalo News. You can follow Nick on Facebook and Twitter and find more of his work here.