Atwater man takes officer’s Taser gun during struggle

rparsons@mercedsun-star.comNovember 29, 2013 

— An Atwater man managed to take a Taser from a police officer on Thanksgiving night before police used batons to subdue the man and take him into custody, Atwater police reported.

Nelson Delgado Rodriguez, 39, tried to use the stun gun on Atwater police officers, but did not know how to make the weapon function properly, Cpl. William Novetzke reported Friday.

Officers responded to a domestic violence call aT 11:12 p.m. at a home in the 2400 block of First Street.

Police went to cuff Rodriguez and he began to fight with the officers, Novetzke said.

During the struggle, Rodriguez managed to take the Taser away from one of the officers. The man pointed the Taser at the officers and tried to fire it, police said.

However, the weapon’s electric prongs were not attached at the time and the stun gun was set on drive-stun mode, Novetzke said. In drive-stun mode, the user generally removes the Taser’s cartridge and delivers the shock by directly applying the device to the target’s body.

Rodriguez gave up firing the weapon and hurled the Taser at the officers, who had begun using batons to subdue him, police said.

Several officers suffered minor “scrapes and bruises,” Novetzke said.

Rodriguez was examined by medical staff before he was booked at the Merced County Jail on suspicion of battery on peace officers, taking a weapon from an officer other than a firearm, both felonies, and misdemeanor counts of domestic battery and resisting arrest.

He was still in custody Friday afternoon in lieu of $71,500 bail, authorities confirmed.

Staff writer Rob Parsons at rparsons@mercedsunstar.com or (209) 385-2482.

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