Four individuals were arrested in the Sav-A-Lot parking lot last Tuesday afternoon, December 13th, after a routine traffic stop by a Lafayette Police Department captain, led to his assault and another officer being jabbed twice with a used hypodermic needle.The incident began when Captain Kevin Woodard observed a Nissan pickup, with four unrestrained people, including Joseph Carter, Danny Kelley, Diana Rogers, and Carmen Cates, in the cab of the small truck. When the captain existed his patrol car and approached the vehicle, he realized Cates and Carter had outstanding warrants on them.
When Woodard attempted to cuff Carter he immediately began to resist by shoving, pulling and fighting. “He continued to pull away and resist,” Captain Woodard stated, “while I was also trying to keep an eye on the other subjects. At this time, Officer Rejena Parker arrived on the scene to assist, and the situation began to escalate.”
Captain Woodard tried to get him under control again, when he pulled away and attempted to run thru the parking lot, but the officer grabbed the suspect putting him down to the ground. He appeared to be high on drugs and Woodard was able to gain his chemical weapon and spray Carter. At this point, Parker called for backup, with city and county quickly responding.
During the altercation, Officer Parker observed Carter strike Captain Woodard on the back of his head and shoulder area.
“Carter was finally subdued by Captain Woodard,” said Parker, “and handcuffed, while the other three subjects, along with Joseph Carter, were placed under arrest.”
While searching the vehicle, Officer Parker was jabbed two times with an uncapped, used hypodermic needle. At which time, several other needles were found that were allegedly used to administer drugs into the suspects veins.
The suspects were transported to the Macon County Jail and Chief Ray Amalfitano took Officer Parker to the ER for treatment. “Officer Parker will have to undergo several months of treatment and testing,” noted the Chief, “and I am tremendously upset with the abuse my officers have been forced to deal with recently.”
“As I have said in the past, I know it’s a bad situation when we have to take someone to jail,” continued Chief Amalfitano, “but these individuals are just making it worse on themselves when they become aggressive with the arresting officers. As I have repeatedly stated, we are not going to take anyone attempting to attack us. If a suspect hits a officer, expect to be hit back.”
“Once again, I’m asking all the citizens to stand with us and help us keep these people out of our community and away from our kids, as well as the elderly. Drug dealers are not welcome in our town.”
Diana Rogers, age 46, of Cookeville, was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia and violation of seatbelt law. Bond was set at $2,500 and a General Sessions Court date is scheduled for January 18.
Carmen Cates, age 35, of Lafayette, was charged with possession of drug paraphernalia and violation of seatbelt law. Bond was set at $2,500 and a General Sessions Court date is scheduled for January 18.
Joseph Carter, age 31, of Lafayette, was charged with violation of probation, assault, possession of drug paraphernalia, aggravated assault, resisting arrest, disorderly conduct, evading arrest, violation of seatbelt law and theft of property. Bond was set at $2,500 and $11,500 and a General Sessions Court dates are scheduled for January 4, January 18 and February 1st.
Danny Kelly, age 52, of Lafayette, was charged with violation of seatbelt law and possession of drug paraphernalia. Bond was set at $2,500 and General Sessions Court date is scheduled for January 18.
All the above charges were filed by LPD Captain Kevin Woodard.