POWHATAN POINT -A Powhatan Village police officer who faced a dangerous situation involving an intoxicated man, his boat and the Ohio River on Saturday is being commended for his actions that probably saved others from harm.
Powhatan Point Officer Chase Maffe responded to a call that an intoxicated man was trying to load a boat onto a trailer at the Powhatan Marina. Upon arrival, Maffe found Jeffery Stewart Anderson in his boat at the dock with his truck and trailer on the ramp. The trailer was submerged in the water.
"I approached the dock and began speaking with Anderson," Maffe said. "I asked how he was doing, to which he replied, in a heavily slurred speech, that he was attempting to put his boat on his trailer."
Maffe stated that he could smell alcohol and that Anderson's lower body, below his waist, was wet and his leg was bleeding.
There were two other boats in the water as well.
"I was able to indicate that Anderson was intoxicated, and the boat was tied to the dock," Maffe said.
Maffe asked Anderson to exit his boat, and he would take him to meet his friend who was sober, and he could dock the boat onto the trailer. Anderson agreed but sat in the operator's seat instead.
Maffe told Anderson not to turn on his boat, and he replied, "I can do this, I just need to dock my boat."
At this point, Anderson was advised that he would be tasered if he did not get out of the boat. At one point Anderson turned on his boat and was throttling it, the report stated. Maffe deployed his taser at Anderson's left shoulder and activated it.
Anderson attempted to move his boat, but crashed into the dock since it was still tied up. Maffe activated his taser again, but the taser detached.
Anderson crashed his boat into the dock again.
"I again yelled at Anderson that he was under arrest and (he) was actively resisting arrest. Anderson realized his boat was still tied to the dock," Maffe said.
Maffe stated that Anderson turned off his boat but would not get on the floor of his boat as commanded. The report stated that Anderson commanded that the officer bring him into shore.
A standoff between Maffe and Anderson went on for five minutes.
Anderson exited his boat but fell on two separate occasions. Once on land, he was handcuffed. The boat and truck were towed.
After the scene was cleared, Anderson was taken to the Martins Ferry Police Department for OVI processing and then taken to East Ohio Regional Hospital for medical clearance before being transported to jail.
"I am glad no one was hurt, and it is a shame that someone almost put members in the public in danger because he would not comply," Maffe said.
Anderson, 54, of Moundsville, was charged with obstructing official business, resisting arrest, reckless operation of a vessel, operating under the influence and two counts of failure to comply.
"I am proud of my officer. He did a great job at handling this situation and want to thank the caller who notified us. Without that call, Anderson might have seriously injured himself and someone else," Chief Jason West said.