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Hanover Twp. man charged with assaulting police officers


August 24. 2013 12:46AM

By - elewis@civitasmedia.com






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SWOYERSVILLE — Forty Fort police said an intoxicated Hanover Township man continued to struggle with officers after he was stunned by a Taser early Friday morning.


Jason Verdekal, 30, of Saint Marys Road, kicked several officers when he was taken out of a house on Culver Street, Forty Fort, just before 5 a.m., according to charges filed.


Police had responded to the house after Verdekal’s girlfriend, Jennifer McLaughlin, sought help and reported he allegedly punched three holes in the wall and took her cellphone.


According to the criminal complaint: When officers arrived at the house, they noticed Verdekal had bloodshot eyes, slurred speech and an odor of alcohol. McLaughlin and Verdekal screamed at one another when she accused him of taking her phone.


Verdekal refused to sit down and told police, “(Expletive) arrest me” and allegedly pushed an officer twice, the complaint states.


Police said in the complaint Verdekal fought with two officers, resulting in one of the officers deploying his Taser. Verdekal grabbed and kicked an officer after he was stunned, and kicked a screen door “destroying it” and “almost striking” a third officer who arrived to assist, according to the complaint.


As Verdekal was being escorted to a police cruiser, he allegedly continued to kick, striking three other officers who had arrived.


Police said none of the officers was seriously injured.


Verdekal was arraigned by District Judge David Barilla in Swoyersville on five counts each of aggravated assault and simple assault and one count each of resisting arrest and criminal mischief. He was jailed at the Luzerne County Correctional Facility for lack of $20,000 bail.


A preliminary hearing is scheduled on Sept. 5.




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