Yesterday morning around 9 a.m. traffic agent Edgar Saeteros, 35, approached a double-parked Mercury in the Parkchester neighborhood of the Bronx. Within minutes he was on his back, "out cold" with a fractured skull, and police are on the lookout for the driver. It shouldn't take too long to track the guy down, however, because the genius fled on foot, leaving his car behind.

Police describe the perp as Hispanic, about 6 feet tall and weighing about 165 pounds. A union rep tells the Daily News that Saeteros was "hit in the head, punched twice, and knocked to the ground. He said he was struck two or three times and he was kicked once. No words were exchanged. He tried to arrest the guy, but the guy got away." One Traffic Enforcement Agent tells the tabloid, "We're trained to deal with it, but it still happens... in the Bronx it's worse."

One Parkchester resident tells NY1, "Right now you're getting so out of control, out of order, they start assaulting police officer. So that should tell how bad the neighborhood is getting lately." Another local says, "I have no idea what they get out of beating people right now. I think they kind of enjoy it." Saeteros, who has two young daughters, is listed in stable condition at Jacobi Medical Center, where NYPD Commissioner Raymond Kelly visited Saeteros appeared last night to pay his respects. (Mayor Bloomberg phoned his in.)