OLEAN — City police identified a 21-year-old Olean woman as the driver who allegedly led officers on a high-speed pursuit early Sunday, resulting in an officer firing his weapon on Garden Avenue.
Kristiana M. Rivera of 509 N. 4th St. allegedly led police on a chase through the city before jumping the curb west of the the intersection of East State and Front streets and entering War Veterans Park, striking a small light fixture and smashing a monument at 3:30 a.m.
According to the Olean police report, Rivera and a passenger, identified as Seairra M. Gayton, 18, of 911 Page Road, suffered possibly serious injuries and were transported to Olean General Hospital.
No information was available regarding the current medical conditions of Rivera and Gayton.
Police said Rivera has so far been charged with third-degree aggravated unlicensed operation of a motor vehicle, an unclassified misdemeanor, and leaving the roadway, speed not prudent, reckless driving and driving on the sidewalk, infractions.
Mayor Bill Aiello said Tuesday that the officer who allegedly fired his weapon during the incident was placed on paid administrative leave pending an investigation by the New York State Police’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation.
The officer was not named, and the mayor and the Olean Police Department have indicated that the overall investigation of the incident is in the hands of state police. Any further information must come from that agency, they said.
The Irish Famine Memorial was destroyed in the park, with the impact of the small SUV scattering stones several feet in different directions.