A man detained on
Sunday by an Indiana State Police trooper on suspicion of drunk driving
attempted to use the trooper’s Taser against him, the ISP said.
police, at 6:08 a.m. Senior Trooper Anthony Potesta was dispatched to a
disabled vehicle in the eastbound lanes of I-80/94, near Burr Street in
Gary. On his arrival, Potesta made contact with Michael P. Bartow, 29, of
Algonquin, Ill., who police said showed signs of intoxication.
subsequently refused to submit to field sobriety testing, then when making
the walk back to his vehicle resisted when Potesta tried to detain him,
police said. “A struggle occurred as Trooper Potesta attempted to deploy his
department-issued Taser,” police said. “Bartow reached for the Taser and a
struggle for the weapon took place. The Taser fell to the ground, at which
point Bartow picked up the Taser and attempted to deploy the Taser against
Trooper Potesta. For an unknown reason the Taser failed to fire.”
In the meantime,
several Good Samaritans, including an off-duty Illinois sheriff’s deputy,
stopped to assist, and one of them succeeded in using a chemical agent
against Bartow. “This proved to be quite beneficial as the subject was able
to be secured in handcuffs shortly thereafter,” police said.
Both Potesta and
Bartow were transported to Methodist Hospital Northlake Campus in Gary for
treatment and later released, police said.
Bartow was booked
into the Lake County Jail on charges of disarming an officer, battery to law
enforcement, resisting law enforcement, and operating while intoxicated,