Police on Long Island have arrested two Brooklyn men after an officer was shot responding to a burglary at a home that may have been targeted for cash.
Nassau County Police Officer Mohit Arora, a 32-year-old six-year veteran of the department, was recovering after surgery on his wounded hip, and his family told NBC 4 New York "he is OK, he says he's feeling better."
Officials announced Thursday that two men, Cong Xu, 21, and Renhang Qiu, 22, are both charged with burglary and other counts. Qiu pleaded not guilty and was ordered held without bail. He apologized twice as he was led from court.
Xu, faces a charge of attempted murder of a police officer in addition to the other offenses, pleaded not guilty from his hospital bed. His head and left ear were bandaged and he had bruises on his face. It's not clear why Xu is hospitalized. He was also ordered held without bail.
Police say Xu was running from the home on Campbell Street in New Hyde Park early Wednesday when he was confronted by officers. As he ran away, he allegedly turned and fired several rounds, hitting Arora in the abdomen, police said.
Both Qiu and Xu were taken into custody near the scene.
Inspector Kenneth Lack, a police spokesman, said the house in the alleged burglary had been targeted. He did not elaborate, but a neighbor told NBC 4 New York the unidentified homeowners run a takeout restaurant and the thieves may have been after cash.
Prosecutors accuse Qiu of hatching the plan to rob the home and say he waited in a car as the suspected gunman, Xu, went inside.
A gun was recovered near where the officer was shot.
Arora's family said they were relieved he survived. He remained hospitalized Thursday in stable condition. Colleagues say he will undergo more surgery on his hip and faces a long recovery.
Qiu is being represented by Legal Aid, which doesn't comment on ongoing cases. It wasn't clear if Xu had an attorney.
Published at 9:52 AM EDT on Aug 15, 2013 | Updated at 8:04 PM EDT on Aug 15, 2013