Following a one-day trial and four-hour deliberation, a six-panel Angelina County jury concluded Sauceda was guilty of resisting arrest on March 15, 2009, while being pepper-sprayed, shot with a pepper ball gun and wrestled to the ground by nine Lufkin Police officers in his own living room, according to testimony.
The man in question is evidently mentally retarded and his crime was that he hid in the bathroom and refused to come out when police crashed into his house. This looks like a case of an attempt to prevent a lawsuit and over-reaching.
According to the DA: “We tried the case simply because we really did believe he resisted arrest,” Jones said. “The statute says that you do not have the right to resist the arrest. We were going to try the case no matter what.”
Well, in my opinion, you ought to have the right to hide when frightened. Not in East Texas – the police get to claim a locked door is “resisting arrest.”
The police evidently beat the man up pretty badly when they got him out of the bathroom. The jury found the man guilty under the law, but sent a note to the judge saying that,
“We’ve all reached a verdict. To us we feel he has been wronged. Please consider that in his sentencing.”
The victim received 30 days in jail, along with his beating and pepper spray assault.