JPD: Suspect threatened wife, resisted arrest

JONESBORO, Ark. – A man landed in jail after police said he threatened people early Tuesday morning but it was his alleged acts after the arrest which may cause him the most trouble.

At about 3 a.m., Officer Tanner Huff with Jonesboro Police Department was dispatched to apartments at 2001 Belt Street in reference to threats being made. When Huff arrived, he knocked on the door and tried to make contact by announcing “police.” Someone shouted back to go away, saying “I’m not opening the door.”

Around this time, the alleged victim made her way up the street and told Officer Matthew McDaniel the suspect, Joshua Norton, 25, of Jonesboro, was in the residence with two others and he had threatened to hit her and one of the other men inside. 

While officers could not forcibly enter the home, the woman was a resident and was able to give police permission – and keys – to enter. Having been told of a possible victim inside, officers approached the door and told Norton they were going to open the door themselves if he did not open it. He refused, the report said, so officers unlocked it. A chain latch prevented police from getting in at this point. The report says Officer Bryan Davis told the suspect to unlatch the door or they would kick it in. The suspect complied.

Once outside, Norton explained to officers he had not threatened to hit anyone and that they only had a verbal argument. Police noticed he smelled of intoxicants and was talking very loudly and repeating himself. Police spoke with those inside, one of which said Norton had been acting out and was drunk but they were all okay. However, the female victim said Norton had been violent with her in the past, having hit her before. Based on the fear of the alleged victim and statements from others in the house, Norton was arrested – but the work was just beginning for police.

While Officers Huff and Davis escorted Norton down stairs to a patrol unit, the report says he began to jump and pull away saying he was not going to jail. Huff grabbed under his arm and pushed him to the ground. Davis assisted and they both put the suspect into the back of the patrol car. There, he reportedly started trying to kick out the back window of the unit. Huff opened the door and Norton then allegedly began kicking at officers. Huff reported he was kicked in the hand and Davis was kicked several times.

Using a taser in drive stun-mode (without firing prongs), Davis shocked him in the stomach to gain control. The report says it didn’t help.

Officers managed to get the resisting suspect into the vehicle but once the doors were shut, realized he had moved his handcuffs to the front and was once again kicking the back glass. Officers then removed the man from the vehicle, again secured his hands behind his back, removed his shoes, and then cuffed his legs together. His hands were then strapped to his legs to prevent him from attempting to kick the window out again.

In effect, the man was hogtied.

Norton was transported to Craighead County Detention Center. Continuing to display the same level of reason as earlier in the encounter, Huff reported Norton told him once they arrived at CCDC, Norton would take Huff’s gun and kill him. The only way to stop Norton would be for Huff to shoot him, Norton allegedly said.

Likely appreciative of the warning, Huff simply pulled the suspect out of the car and held him on the ground until detention staff came out and took custody of the erratic man.

Norton faces a number of serious charges, including felony second degree battery of an officer, first degree terroristic threatening, also a felony, and three misdemeanors: third degree assault on a family member, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. He remains in CCDC as of this publication.

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