A driver who led authorities on a chase using an all-terrain vehicle faces charges after two police cars crashed in Belleville, sending four officers to the hospital, officials said Friday.

Police tried to pull over the ATV rider, Wilfredo A. Soto, on Washington Avenue around 10 p.m. Thursday, but he did not stop, according to the Essex County Prosecutor’s Office.

“The first unit pursued him and called for backup,” the prosecutor’s office said in a statement. “In the vicinity of Greylock Parkway and Washington Avenue the ATV collided with a car driven by a civilian.”

Two police cars that were headed to assist collided into each other, according to the prosecutor’s office. Four officers from those cruisers were taken to University Hospital in Newark. The motorist from the initial crash with the ATV was also sent to a hospital.

All of the injured were treated for non-life threatening injuries and released, the prosecutor’s office said.

Authorities charged Soto, of Nutley, with five counts of aggravated assault, second degree eluding, contempt and unspecified motor vehicle offenses. Records show the 21-year-old remained held at the Essex County jail as of Friday night.

Noah Cohen may be reached at ncohen@njadvancemedia.com. Follow him on Twitter @noahycFind NJ.com on Facebook.




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