TITUSVILLE — A Titusville man faces up to seven years in jail for allegedly trying to disarm a city police officer earlier this month.
Michael Andrew Buck, 21, of 431 Elm St., has been charged by Titusville Police Department with disarming a law enforcement officer, a third-degree felony, as well as a summary count of criminal mischief for an incident at Titusville’s police station on Oct. 16.
If convicted on the charges, the disarming count carries a maximum penalty of seven years in jail and a $15,000 fine while the criminal mischief charge has a maximum penalty of three months in jail and a $300 fine.
Buck is accused of attempting to grab Officer Timothy Russell’s Taser from its holster on Russell’s duty belt at 3 a.m. that day while Buck was being held in a holding cell at the time, according to police.
A Taser is an electronic stun gun that fires barbs attached by wires to batteries. The device delivers an electric shock that causes temporary paralysis.
Buck had been placed in the holding cell earlier in the morning by Titusville Police Department after officers assisted the University of Pittsburgh at Titusville Campus Police, according to the arrest affidavit filed in the case. Buck was arrested by campus police as domestic violence suspect and campus police requested Buck be placed in a holding cell at Titusville Police Department, the affidavit said.
While in the holding cell, Buck began to shake and kick at the cell door, the affidavit said. Buck also told two Titusville officers as well as two Crawford County Adult Probation officers he wanted to fight them, according to the affidavit.
Officers attempted to talk to Buck to calm him down but were unsuccessful, the affidavit said.
As Russell was standing in front of the cell door, Buck reached out and touched the Taser on Russell’s belt in an attempt to remove it, the affidavit said. Titusville Officer Jeff Prugh then pointed his Taser at Buck, who then complied with police instructions to get on his knees and face a wall of the cell, according to the affidavit.
Buck faces a preliminary hearing on the charges Oct. 30 before Magisterial District Judge Amy Nicols. Buck remains lodged in the Crawford County jail in Saegertown in lieu of $15,000 bond.