BAYONNE — A man who hit a garbage truck worker nearly struck a police sergeant as he fled the scene in his vehicle Friday morning.

Police Capt. Eric Amato said James Cooper, 70, of Bayonne, struck a worker on a garbage truck around 10:35 a.m. while he was collecting trash on West 49th Street.

Cooper pinned the worker between the truck and his vehicle but was able to free the worker by backing up. He left the scene after the worker turned down his offer of money.

A co-worker flagged down a Bayonne police sergeant who spotted Cooper and ordered him to stop. The sergeant had to jump out of the way to avoid being hit and also pinned against the truck.

Amato said Cooper returned to his home where he was identified by the sergeant and given a field sobriety test, which he failed.

Cooper was charged with DWI, aggravated assault and assault by auto, obstructing a governmental function and compounding.

The worker suffered minor injuries to his legs and abdomen and was treated at a hospital.

Dan Alexander is a reporter for New Jersey 101.5. You can reach him at

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