Tuesday Jan 05 2010
Taser, dog bite don’t stop Loomis man
By: Jenifer Gee Journal Staff Writer
Placer Sheriff’s deputy, sergeant injured in scuffle
Despite being bit by a police dog, shot with a Taser stun gun and hit by a deputy’s baton, it took a sergeant tackling him to the ground to apprehend a Loomis man. Rhett David Butler, 38, was arrested Sunday on felony charges of assault with a deadly weapon, assault injuring a peace officer, threatening great bodily injury, possession of a billy club and assault on a police dog. He is currently in custody at Placer County Jail held on $150,000 bail. Deputies were called at about 1:17 a.m. to Butler’s home on the 5800 block of Pearson Avenue after he allegedly assaulted and threatened to kill his neighbors and threw items at their home, according to a Placer Sheriff’s report. Butler reportedly threw a punch at a neighbor that didn’t make contact, according to Dena Erwin, Placer Sheriff’s spokeswoman. When deputies arrived they heard Butler yelling inside his home, Erwin said Tuesday. A deputy wrote in a report that he watched Butler walk outside and throw what looked like a 2-by-4 at his neighbor’s house. At first, Butler refused to come out of his house, Erwin said. Deputies then heard Butler slamming things around in his garage when the door suddenly opened, Erwin said. Butler then allegedly climbed into his white four-door Buick sedan and started to back out of the driveway despite commands from deputies to stop. Butler eventually pulled back into the garage, opened his door and sat in the car, again ignoring deputy commands, Erwin said. A K-9 was then released and bit Butler on the arm. Butler then wedged the dog, Chico, between his body and the car door while bending the dog’s neck backward. Butler was shot with a Taser stun gun but that reportedly had no effect on the man, Erwin said. “Butler jumped to his feet immediately after being Tased,” Erwin said. Butler then threw a chair at a deputy, which resulted in a knee injury to the law enforcement officer. Another deputy then struck Butler “numerous times” with a baton, the report stated. A sergeant then tackled Butler from behind and handcuffed him on the ground. That sergeant sustained a shoulder injury as a result of the scuffle, Erwin said. Deputies later found a wooden billy club in the front seat of Butler’s vehicle, Erwin said. Both deputies sought medical treatment after Butler was taken via ambulance for a medical check out. Butler, who was under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol, was later medically cleared and booked into Placer County Jail, Erwin said. Chico appears to be fine, Erwin said. Jenifer Gee can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.