Police are searching for two men accused of attacking a Genoa Township officer during a traffic stop early Thursday morning.
Police are expected to release sketches of the two suspects Friday.
The incident occurred shortly after 5:30 a.m. in the 6900 block of Sunbury Road in the Westerville area near Hoover Reservoir.
Police said they believed the men were stealing items from boats.
Authorities say the officer stopped a white work van with temporary tags, and the two white men got out of the van.
Genoa Township Police Chief Robert Taylor told 10TV he believes the men went after the officer, identified as 39-year-old Lt. Greg Yurkovich.
Officers say that Yurkovich has been with Genoa Township for more than 10 years.
That officer activated the emergency button on his radio and dispatchers could hear the officer say "move back" before the transmission went dead.
When help arrived, the officer was found face down and unresponsive.
"The call went out, and many, many officers from Columbus, Westerville, Delaware sheriff's office, and state patrol responded and obviously, you think the worst and in this situation - he was not shot, fortunately, but he was severely assaulted," said Taylor.
Taylor said that the department is asking all car dealers in the area that sold white work vans with windows in the rear and on the sides within the last 30 to 60 days to contact Delaware County dispatchers at 740-833-2800.
The Genoa Township Police Department currently is without phone or internet services.
Police said that one of the men was described as white, 6 feet 1 inch tall to 6 feet 4 inches tall and about 300 pounds. He was wearing a black sweatshirt with writing on it. He also had brown hair with a buzz cut and a beard.
The second person was described as wearing dark and medium build.
Anyone who was in the area at the time and thinks they recognize the description of the man is asked to call police at the above phone number.
At a news conference at 12:30 on Thursday, an officer said he believed those responsible for the attack had left the area.
“I highly doubt they are in the vicinity,” said Sgt. Rich Lyon.
The officer was taken to Grant Medical Center with head injuries.
Taylor said that he suffered a concussion and was slowly recovering.
Parents of students in the Westerville City School District were notified about the search.
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