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Officer Injured As Police Pursuit Ends With Violent Crash In Bergen County, New Jersey

CRESSKILL, N.J. (CBSNewYork) -- A police pursuit following a suspicious incident at a bank in Bergen County, New Jersey ended with a violent crash Monday afternoon.

Tenafly Police say officers responded to a Chase Bank on County Road just after 2 p.m. for reports of an individual attempting to pass a fraudulent check.

Upon arrival, they observed an occupied black BMW sport utility vehicle idling across the street. As detectives entered the bank, patrol officers approached the SUV which quickly sped away.

Officers attempted to stop the vehicle as it entered Cresskill. Authorities say thats when a Tenafly cruiser slammed into a utility pole near the intersection of County Road and East Madison Avenue.

The BMW was last seen traveling south on County Road heading towards Tenafly.

Dr. Rudolph Streemke told CBS2's Tony Aiello his office was in the middle of a busy afternoon when all of a sudden power went out following the crash.

"I swear it was a boom, real loud," Cresskill resident Dominic Di Dolci said. "That's why I came running outside."

Di Dolci says he was amazed at how quickly police arrived at the scene.

Power was out to roughly a dozen homes and businesses in the area for several hours as crews probed the collision which downed several electrical lines.

"No power, no business," Dr. Streemke said. "We had to cancel all our patients. Hope we can get everyone in tomorrow when the power's back on."

Some residents used generators to power a few lights and appliances. Others used candles and flashlights. One group of men even barbecued in their chilly backyard.

"It is what it is," Cresskill neighbor Stan Slavov said. "No heat and no cooking. No lights, no nothing."

Authorities say the officer driving the cruiser was taken to a nearby hospital with non-life threatening injuries. He was released late Monday evening.

Meanwhile, Tenafly detectives arrested one suspect -- 18-year-old Jai-iris D. Crawford of Englewood -- inside the bank for attempting to pass a fraudulent check. He's facing attempted theft and related charges.

Anyone with information on the whereabouts of the black BMW SUV or the attempted check-cashing scheme is urged to contact the Tenafly Police Department detective bureau at: (201) 568-5100.

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