JONESBORO, Ark. – A local animal rights activist was arrested and released Saturday after a confrontation with officers which turned physical.
At about 8 p.m. Saturday night, right around sunset, Officer Alexandria Duncan and Officer Michael Talley of Jonesboro Police Department were nearby Creath Street when Duncan noticed a white 2013 Lincoln SUV traveling westbound on Creath. Duncan’s report said she saw a headlight out on the driver’s side as the vehicle passed by. She radioed to Talley, who confirmed as the vehicle passed him the headlight was out, his report said. Duncan began the traffic stop at Creath and Bridge.
The female officer approached the driver, Angie Heringer, 55, of Jonesboro, and asked for her driver’s license, registration and proof of insurance. Instead of complying, the report says Heringer “cursed and yelled at” Duncan and wouldn’t provide the items. Duncan said she asked for the information at least three times as Heringer continued to argue with her. Duncan ordered Heringer out of the car.
With the vehicle door locked and the SUV still in drive, Duncan reached into the window and began to open the door from the inside. Duncan said Heringer began to scream and yelled, “get the f**k out of my car.” Duncan opened the door and ordered Heringer out but to no avail, she reported, so the officer reached in to unbuckle her and forcibly remove Heringer.
Realizing the situation was escalating, Talley approached the driver’s side, where he also reported Heringer was being combative. As he assisted Duncan, he said Heringer was actively resisting by pushing and pulling away from both officers. Talley said he pulled her out of the vehicle to, “keep her from driving off or grabbing a weapon.”
Suddenly, the vehicle began to roll forward. Heringer had not put it in park. Talley jumped into the vehicle to put the brakes on and park it.
The officers picked her up from the ground and escorted her to the front of their patrol car, all the while being screamed and cursed at by the woman, the report says. She was handcuffed and put into the back of Duncan’s patrol car. However, due to Craighead County Detention Center being full, she was cited and released for obstructing governmental operations, disorderly conduct, resisting arrest, no proof of liability insurance, and improper headlights. Her court date is 1 p.m. on June 19.
Heringer is the founder and executive director at ARC Angels 4 Animals, her Facebook profile says. NEA Report attempted to reach Heringer by phone Tuesday afternoon but was unsuccessful.
In a Facebook post following the incident, Heringer posted several photos and her account of what happened. In the post, she claimed Duncan pulled her over “fraudulently” and indicated the arrest was motivated by Duncan’s personal association with an animal rescue group, ALFA (A Love For Animals), which has found itself at odds with Heringer’s group. In the post, Heringer said “that guy” manhandled me, which seems to be a slight directed at Duncan, but makes no other reference to the other officer who was present during the incident. Heringer also mentioned it was caught on dashcam video.
NEA Report has submitted a Freedom of Information Act request to JPD for the dashcam video. The video is expected to be made available Wednesday, Sgt. Cassandra Brandon said, and will be posted shortly thereafter.
Heringer also posted several photos of what appear to be her driver’s side headlight, along with her passenger headlight, both working shortly after the traffic stop. What the photo does not show is if the high-beams or the low-beams were in use. If the high-beams were on in the picture, it would be impossible to see a non-functional low-beam in the photo.
The social media post by Heringer was removed from public view after attracting significant attention over the weekend.
On Feb. 24, NEA Report contacted Heringer about another report she was the subject of. Then, a woman who was hospitalized in December alleged Heringer had broken into her home and stolen the hospitalized woman’s dogs. Heringer told NEA Report it was “ridiculous,” and denied the allegation. No charges were ever brought from the incident.
However, charges were filed against Heringer in a separate incident in Craighead County District Court for harassment and criminal trespass. She is due in court for these charges on July 12. In this case, filed in September, 2016, the complainant, Karen Siegel, alleges Heringer drove by her house repeatedly in a white Lincoln SUV and threatened to run her out-of-town. Photo evidence and witness testimony have also been filed in support of the allegation, a court source said.
It should also be noted Siegel has a current appeal filed against multiple convictions of animal cruelty in circuit court. Heringer is a witness against her in that case.
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