Possible related shootings in Newark leave police officer hospitalized, cab driver dead

(10/09/04) NEWARK - A manhunt is underway in Newark after a shooting early Saturday morning left a police officer in the hospital and a livery cab driver dead. The incidents took place within a few blocks of each other near the intersection of Seventh Avenue and North Sixth Street.

Cops say the driver of a Jaguar under heavy pursuit crashed along Seventh Avenue. Five suspects allegedly jumped out and opened fire on police. Authorities then say Officer Eduardo Petihno was shot in the head and taken to UMDNJ. He is currently listed in serious but stable condition after surgery to a fractured jaw, but doctors say his injuries do not appear to be life threatening.

Just a block away from the police shootout, livery cab driver Santos Solana from Newark was found shot dead. Cops are currently unsure if the shootings are related. The Newark Police Department is hunting for the suspects and looking for answers as both incidents remain under investigation.

Newark police ask anyone with information about the shootings to call them at (973) 733-6007, and they stress that all calls will remain confidential.

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