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Man arrested for battery against officer

An Atwater police officer received minor injuries following a weekend scuffle with Marcus Aue of Merced at a local bar. Aue, 39, figured prominently in a steroid scandal involving Merced County Sheriff's Department deputies several years ago.

In June 2006, Aue settled a lawsuit against the sheriff's department for an undisclosed amount, stemming from a fight in 2004 with two deputies, Brian Ferreira and John Mathis, at the Merced County Fair.

In the latest incident Saturday, Aue was arrested on misdemeanor charges of resisting arrest, public intoxication and battery on a police officer.

Detective Armando Echevarria of the Atwater Police Department said Officer Dick Wisdom received a minor facial injury when Aue resisted arrest about 6:20 p.m. at the Almond Tree Lounge in the 1400 block of Sycamore Avenue.

Wisdom and officers Scott Duncan and Bob Gregory responded to reports that a man had been assaulted at the bar. Aue admitted being in an altercation with another person but wouldn't provide more details about the incident. He refused offers for a ride home for him or medical aid.

According to police, Aue was arrested when it was obvious he was intoxicated and couldn't care for himself. He became belligerent and combative when officers tried to arrest him, Echevarria said.

Aue was taken to the Community Campus of Mercy Medical Center Merced where he was treated and released for his injuries. After booking into Merced County Jail, Aue posted $27,100 bail and was released, according to a correctional official.

Aue allegedly was creating a disturbance at the bar and was escorted outside by an acquaintance where the assault occurred. Echevarria said investigation into the first incident has been completed since there were no independent witnesses but it could be reopened if Aue supplies more details to officers.

Just before it was scheduled to go to trial in June 2006, Aue settled his case. He said he was severely beaten by two sheriff's deputies on steroids. Aue said the blows he received led to brain damage, balance problems, a new speech impediment and the loss of one year of work.

Aue's settlement was made May 24, 2006, after mediation talks with a retired federal judge in Sacramento and county supervisors approved the deal.

All parties to the suit said they were not allowed to say what the county paid Aue as part of the settlement.

The lawsuit said the fight broke out at the fair when, after a concert, Ferreira and Aue recognized each other from a previous confrontation at a Merced bar weeks earlier.

A police report says that Aue instigated a fight. But Aue claims Ferreira, who was wearing a uniform and was on duty, first shoved him and threatened to arrest him. Aue said the blows he received resulted in brain damage.

But the county's attorney, said there was no evidence Aue's injuries resulted in brain damage.

The sheriff's department conducted an internal investigation of the incident, but results were not disclosed. Two months after the fair incident, the department acknowledged that four deputies admitted using steroids.

Associate Editor Doane Yawger can be reached at 209-385-2485 or Former Sun-Star reporters Adam Ashton and Chris Collins contributed to this report.