By Associated Press - Tuesday, February 16, 2016

TOMS RIVER, N.J. (AP) - A New York man accused of striking a police officer with his car in a New Jersey strip mall parking lot and briefly dragging him has been indicted on an attempted murder charge.

Giomar Diaz also faces charges of aggravated assault, eluding police and aggravated assault while attempting to elude police in the December incident. The indictment was handed up Feb. 9 by an Ocean County grand jury.

Diaz remains jailed on $500,000 bail. If convicted on all counts, he would face several decades in prison.

Authorities have said the 33-year-old Bronx resident had been deported to the Dominican Republic and apparently was living in the United States illegally.

It wasn’t known Tuesday if Diaz had retained an attorney who could comment on his behalf. An arraignment has not been scheduled.

Authorities said Diaz had tried to use fake identification at a Division of Motor Vehicles office, and Toms River police Cpl. Daniel Brennan was called in. Brennan was talking with Diaz outside when Diaz ran into his car and drove in reverse, authorities said.

Brennan became trapped between the door and driver’s seat and was dragged at least 25 yards before he broke free, authorities said. The officer was treated at a hospital for undisclosed injuries.

Diaz abandoned his car a short time later and was picked up Alvin Hernandez-Almazar, 28, of Camden, authorities said. About two hours later, a Toms River officer stopped the car Hernandez-Almazar was driving because it was moving erratically.

Authorities soon determined that Diaz was wanted in the dragging, and both men were taken into custody.

Hernandez-Almazar has been indicted on a charge of hindering the apprehension or prosecution of Diaz. It wasn’t known Tuesday if Diaz had retained an attorney.

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