Linden cop in court for wrong-way crash

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In a wheelchair and with his head down, Linden police Officer Pedro Abad arrived for his arraignment at court in Staten Island Monday morning.

Abad, who prosecutors said was drunk behind the wheel after leaving a strip club March 20, was in court to answer for the deaths of two friends in his car from a head-on crash that night.

Prosecutors said Abad drove the wrong way down the West Shore Expressway, recklessly causing the accident with a blood alcohol level of 2.4, which is 3 times the legal limit.

Six months later, Abad was indicted on 27 criminal counts, among them aggravated vehicular homicide which he could face 25 years in prison if convicted of.

He pleaded not guilty during an appearance in front of Justice Mario Mattei.

Mattei set Abad's bail at $25,000 bond or $5,000 cash, which was backed by a bail bonds officer who accompanied Abad into the courtroom.

Police in Linden have said Abad will be suspended without pay upon his indictment, but Abad had remained on the payroll since the crash. He was recovering from what his lawyer said were severe injuries that left him without the full use of his leg and with difficulty speaking.

This is not the first time Abad was allegedly behind the wheel with alcohol in his system.

In both 2011 and 2013, police said Abad was charged with drunk driving.

In the later arrest he was transferred to a desk job after his license was suspended.

The license was returned to him just four months before the March fatal crash.