A Wauwatosa man was the driver of a car in an incident early Friday in which his passenger has been accused of viciously assaulting a Milwaukee County sheriff's deputy.
According a release from the sheriff's department, the deputy, a 17-year veteran, was traveling westbound from downtown Milwaukee on Interstate 94 when he observed a green Mercury Sable deviating from its lane.
The deputy stopped the vehicle at North 16th Street. When he approached the vehicle, he detected a strong odor of alcohol emitting from the driver’s breath. The driver, a 23-year-old Wauwatosa man, was ordered out of his vehicle to perform a standardized field sobriety test.
While the deputy was conducting the test, the passenger, a 22-year-old Milwaukee man, slipped out of the car and assaulted the deputy from behind. He repeatedly struck the deputy in the head and face, causing bruising, swelling and lacerations. The deputy used his Taser to immobilize his attacker and take him into custody.
During the assault, a second deputy arrived and attempted to complete the process of taking the driver into custody for suspected drunken driving. The driver refused several orders from the second deputy, who used his pepper spray to gain control.
The driver was arrested for felony violation of parole, resisting an officer, and opperating while intoxicated. His passenger was arrested for felony battery to a police officer and resisting an officer.
The injured deputy was transported to Froedtert Hospital and treated for his injuries and released. Both suspects were seen by medical personnel and cleared. A legal blood draw was performed on the driver.
Milwaukee County sheriff’s detectives were continuing to investigate the incident.
The Wauwatosa man had been convicted of two counts of robbery with use of force in 2007 and was sentenced to five years in prison and three more on extended supervision. Court records do not show how much time he actually served.
The statement from the Sheriff's Department concludes: "A law enforcement officer’s job entails many risks and unforeseen dangers daily. It’s reckless and stupid acts like these that needlessly place officers in harm’s way. This cowardly attack on our deputy demonstrates a clear disregard for the law."