An off-duty veteran police officer caught up in a criminal investigation into ticket fixing climbed down onto a subway track and tried to touch the third rail in an apparent suicide attempt, authorities said Wednesday.
Police officers responding to 911 calls from the officer's wife and a transit employee discovered him before dawn at a subway station near his Bronx home. He was hospitalized with minor injuries after apparently trying to electrocute himself, authorities said.
The officer, a delegate with the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association, testified last week before a grand jury investigating the possible misconduct by union delegates and other officers, according to two people familiar with the probe. Prosecutors suspect the officers arranged for traffic tickets to be torn up before the cases reached court as favors or possibly in exchange for bribes.
The two people spoke on condition of anonymity because the grand jury proceedings are secret and have not been completed.
Multiple news reports have said that about a dozen New York Police Department officers could face minor criminal charges and several more could be disciplined administratively as a result of the investigation targeting Bronx precincts, which began earlier this year.
In a statement Wednesday, PBA President Patrick Lynch suggested the length and uncertainty of the probe were driving officers to "a breaking point." Union officials have criticized prosecutors for turning allegations of ticket fixing into a criminal matter.
"This issue could have and should have been addressed differently," Lynch said.
The NYPD and the Bronx district attorney's office declined to comment on Wednesday.