Nicholas Neely

Neely

An Idaho Falls man was arrested March 23 after he reportedly attempted to use a Taser on a police officer.

According to an Idaho Falls Police Department report, police responded just before 10 a.m. after a woman reported Nicholas Neely, 27, was breaking her house windows with his bare hands.

The affidavit states Neely was speaking incoherently when the officer arrived and did not respond to questions and instructions. Officer Anthony Cox observed that Neely’s hand was covered in blood.

Cox attempted to detain Neely, who resisted. Cox put Neely into a chokehold but had to loosen his grip to reach his microphone and call for backup. Neely escaped the hold, but Cox held him on the ground.

According to the report, the Cox then attempted to use his Taser to stun Neely.

Neely grabbed the Taser and pulled it from Cox’s grip. During the struggle, one of the cartridges was accidentally deployed. Neely got to his feet and pointed the Taser at Cox.

Two witnesses told police they heard someone yell to Neely that the Taser was not a real gun. Cox drew his gun, and Neely began spinning in place before walking toward Sage Avenue.

Cox followed and found Neely banging the Taser on a fence, causing the second cartridge to deploy. A second officer, Sgt. Brian Trimble, arrived in a patrol car near Neely. Cox used the distraction to restrain Neely on the hood of the car.

Neely lifted the Taser over his head, pointed it at Cox and pulled the trigger. The weapon didn’t respond because he had already fired both cartridges.

During the struggle, Neely reportedly punched the Trimble in the face. Trimble wrote in his report that Neely began grabbing his duty belt and ignored commands to stop. Trimble feared Neely was reaching for his gun and punched Neely multiple times in the face to make him stop.

Neely was placed in handcuffs but continued to resist and ignore commands. More officers arrived to assist and take statements from witnesses to the altercation.

The victim told police she had attempted to speak with Neely but said he was in “la la land or something.”

An ambulance arrived to check Neely and the injured officers. Cox had multiple cuts, and Trimble’s finger was bleeding. Neely had several cuts from breaking the windows with his hands.

Idaho Falls Police Department Spokeswoman Jessica Clements said both officers were able to complete their shifts.

Police tried to place Neely into a police car to take him to a hospital, but he continued to resist and banged his head on the window. They decided to put him in the ambulance and restrain him on the gurney.

Police took Neely to Eastern Idaho Regional Medical Center to be treated, then to the Bonneville County Jail. They reported he cursed and struggled the entire time and had to have a spit mask put on his face.

Neely was wanted for multiple warrants in Bonneville County, including a burglary case. He was charged with two counts of assault or battery upon certain personnel, each punishable with up to five years in prison. He was also charged with misdemeanor malicious injury to property and resisting or obstructing officers, each punishable with up to a year in jail.

A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Wednesday in Bonneville County Courthouse.

Reporter Johnathan Hogan can be reached at 208-542-6746.

Load comments