July 8, 2012

Apparently in Texas you can be arrested merely for “resisting arrest”

Filed under: Football, Law, Liberty, USA — Tags: , , , , , — Nicholas @ 09:09

In what must be the worst kind of news for Minnesota Vikings fans, star running back Adrian Peterson was arrested early Saturday morning for … resisting arrest. ProFootballTalk has the report:

A source with knowledge of the situation tells PFT that the incident culminating in Peterson’s arrest was captured by one or more surveillance cameras. Multiple persons also witnessed the event.

According to the source, Peterson, his girlfriend, and some family members were at a nightclub in Houston. At closing time, a group of police officers entered the club, and they began instructing the remaining patrons to leave.

Peterson wanted to get some water before he left, but an officer told Peterson that he needed to leave. Some words apparently were exchanged, but Peterson eventually walked to the exit with one of the club’s bouncers.

It’s believed that one of the officers then jumped on Peterson’s back from behind and tried to take him down. (Key word: “tried.”) Other officers then joined the fray and completed the arrest.

Peterson was charged with resisting arrest, which implies he was being arrested for something else. He is charged for now with no other crime.

I was under the vague impression that to be charged with “resisting arrest” you’d have to already be wanted by the police for doing something that warranted arrest. Based on the initial reports, it doesn’t sound like Peterson did anything before he was arrested to justify arresting him … unless it’s a case of a police officer deciding that he’d been disrespected. We’ll have to wait until more of the information becomes available.

Update: Contrasting with the initial report, Dan Zinski of The Viking Age says Peterson was “heavily intoxicated” at the time:

More on Adrian’s incident, and this isn’t flattering. The general manager of the club where Adrian Peterson was arrested after allegedly pushing an off-duty cop has told website TMZ that the running back was “heavily intoxicated” at the time of the incident. A police report says Peterson became belligerent after he and his companions were told the leave the bar, and ended up being subdued by three officers.

Live at Bayou Place general manager Daniel Maher says Peterson tried to order one last drink after being told to leave, and after being denied, tried to intimidate the bartender into giving him the drink anyway. It was at this point that Maher himself intervened, but Peterson refused to listen to him. The off-duty cop then broke in and was shoved by Peterson, leading to the Viking being hauled in for a misdemeanor A count of resisting arrest.

Update the second: At Viking Update, John Holler provides a bit of background (which may or may not be relevant to this particular case, but is interesting anyway):

The interesting aspect of the Peterson incident is that the only charge he was hit with was resisting arrest. He wasn’t charged with assaulting an officer. Had he actually shoved a policeman to the point that he “stumbled,” it would seem logical that charges of assaulting of an officer would also have been leveled. Therein lies the need to hear both sides of the story.

I come from a different perspective than most on this type of subject. I have been involved with “bouncer dust-ups” on the wrong side. Yet, three of my best friends are or were cops. I could accurately be accused of being “cop-friendly.” Of the numbers saved in my phone, a half-dozen of them are cops. When they’re “moonlighting,” it’s a night off for them. The odds of them getting shot as the result of a meth-addled domestic abuse call are out of the question. In those situations, they are truly “in charge.” And they like it that way.

When a bouncer (cop or otherwise) is working “his turf,” he can be aggressive. Very aggressive. As tenuous as life is in the NFL, the reality is that “hired muscle” at a nightclub can’t lose if he gets in a dust-up with a drunken patron. Whether an off-duty policeman, a local college football player or just a big guy who casts an imposing shadow, “security” at a big-time nightclub is expected to quell all problems — exceptions not allowed.

In order to do so, off-duty cops (trust me when I tell you that they’re never truly off-duty) aren’t going to take any guff from anyone. They have the experience. They have the sobriety advantage.

If the Peterson matter actually goes to court — the smart money would say that only a hard-core prosecutor would push the case — it will be destroyed by competent legal representation on Peterson’s behalf.

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