A man is in jail after police said he assaulted a Catoosa officer at a shopping center.
The officer is lucky he has just cuts and bruises after police said a man charged at him in the Ross parking lot. Officer Brent Colbert said Matthew Bartlett was causing a scene in the parking lot, yelling at customers who walked by. That's why the officer stopped to check on him.
"As soon as he got out of his vehicle, the gentleman stated, 'I'm a civilian, you have no authority over me,'" Colbert said. "And started backing away from him."
After Bartlett charged the officer, he tried to call for help.
"At the same time he's trying to get on his radio and say, 'Hey, I need some help,' the radio wouldn't get out unfortunately," Colbert said. "So he had to hit his emergency button on his radio."
The emergency button immediately pings back to the station to let other officers know their help is needed. Colbert said the officer pushed it just in time.
"Once he hits his emergency button, the guy knocks his radio out of his hand," he said. "So at that point, he has no communication with anybody. The guy's actually physically fighting him, trying to punch him several times in the face."
Fortunately, Colbert said the officer was able to arrest Bartlett. He's sitting in the Rogers County Jail on a complaint of assault and battery on a police officer.
"I think all of us are pretty well prepared to handle ourselves, but at the same time, that's not something we want to do," Colbert said.
The officer is expected to return to work this week.