|Trinity Standard - Local News
Stories Added - November 2009
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2nd suspect ‘tasered’ during assault probe
Trinity Standard - November 2009
TRINITY –For the second time in less than a month, Trinity police used their new Taser, non-lethal weapons to stop a suspect who was attempting to resist arrest.
Robert Bell was charged with misdemeanor evading arrest and detention following the incident on Tuesday, Oct. 27.
According to Police Chief Steven Jones, the suspect is alleged to have gotten into an argument with a family member earlier in the day.
Police were called to the family member’s residence when the suspect showed up demanding entry.
Jones said the family member did not want the suspect in the home and when the suspect was refused entry, he is alleged to have shoved the family member and forced his way inside.
The police chief said when he arrived at the scene, the family member began explaining why police were called when the suspect came outside.
“I was trying to find out what was going on so I told the suspect that he was being detained and asked him to put his hands behind his back so I could handcuff him,” Jones said.
When the suspect refused, Jones said he asked him a second time, this time drawing the Taser.
“I gave him a warning and explained what could happen if he continued to resist,” he said.
At that point, Jones said the suspect turned and began running. When Jones fired the Taser, two probes attached to the Taser by a copper wire hit the suspect and immediately caused him to fall to the ground.
The Taser gave him a five second jolt of 50,000 volts with no amps, causing the suspects muscles to lock temporarily.
“After that, he stopped all resistance and complied with all instructions,” the police chief said.
As per police policy, an East Texas Medical Center ambulance called to the scene to remove the two Taser probes and to give the suspect a examination.
Once the emergency medical technicians cleared him, the suspect was transported to the Trinity City Jail without further incident.
“He had already assaulted a family member and if he had gotten away, there was a chance he would have returned later,” Jones said. “I decided that for the safety of the family member, the Taser needed to be deployed.”
The Trinity Police Department obtained the Tasers in September and officers underwent certification training on Sept. 24. As part of that training, the officers had to receive a five-second jolt from the Taser so they would know what suspects would experience in the field.
Trinity officers first used the non-lethal weapon on Oct. 4 when Joe Parker, 24, of Crockett was zapped following a traffic stop off Highway 19 North.
Parker was subsequently charged with felony possession of a controlled substance in connection with a baggie of powdered cocaine officers say drop from his clothing during the traffic stop.
In that incident, Jones said the suspect also was resisting arrest and was attempting to destroy the bag containing the drugs when officers deployed the Taser.
“Last week’s incident was only the second time we have actual deployed the Taser, but we have used them on a number of other occasions to get suspects to comply with our instructions. Usually, the threat of the Taser is enough, though,” he said.
Damage to pickup reported
In other police activity last week, officers were investigating an estimated $3,200 in damage to a 2008 Ford F-350 pickup owned by Waller-Thornton Funeral Home.
Jones said that sometime during the early morning hours of Tuesday, Oct. 27, someone broke out a window in the truck, caused extensive damage to its interior and stole the mirrors and chrome air duct decorations on the fenders.
Sgt. Thomas Park recovered the stolen mirrors on the night of Oct. 27 and Jones said investigators have identified four potential suspects.
Anyone who noticed any suspicious activity on San Jacinto or Walker streets during the night of Oct. 26 or early morning hours of Oct. 27 are asked to contact the Trinity Police Department at 594-2505 or call the Trinity County Crime Stoppers program at 642-2334.