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Pinellas deputy shocked with own Taser by suspect

CLEARWATER — A Pinellas sheriff's deputy was attacked with his own Taser by a suspect who wrested the device away from him during an arrest Wednesday night, according to jail records.

Sheriff's Cpl. Curtis Kindle was taking Clearwater resident Scott Arden Pearson, 56, into custody about 6:30 p.m. under the Marchman Act, a state law that allows for involuntary assessment or treatment of people with substance addictions. Deputies had received repeated complaints about loud music at his residence at 28488 U.S. 19.

During the arrest, Pearson started fighting with deputies, according to arrest affidavits filed by Kindle and fellow sheriff's Deputy Joe Miner. Kindle used his Taser to deliver a "drive stun" to Pearson, in which the electronic weapon is pressed directly against somebody to administer an incapacitating electric shock. (The devices are also capable of shocking with wired prongs shot from a distance.)

But Pearson "wrestled the weapon" out of Kindle's hands and gave him a drive stun right back, according to Kindle's arrest report.

After his arrest, he told deputies, "I used the weapon on you because you used it on me," Miner's report stated.

Sgt. David DiSano of the Pinellas Sheriff's Office said he was unaware of other incidents in which a deputy had been shocked with his own Taser.

"I can't think of any other time that it's happened," DiSano said. "It may have happened, but it's rare."

He said there was no indication that Kindle had handled the weapon improperly.

Pearson was ultimately arrested and booked into the Pinellas County Jail on two counts of battery on a law enforcement officer, two counts of resisting an officer with violence, and one count of depriving an officer of means of protection or communication.

He was being held on $50,000 bail.

Peter Jamison can be reached at pjamison@tampabay.com or (727) 445-4157.

Pinellas deputy shocked with own Taser by suspect 07/12/12 [Last modified: Thursday, July 12, 2012 7:52pm]
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