A Paintsville man arrested in December 2017 on charges including assault of a police officer pleaded guilty in Johnson County Circuit Court Friday.
Jason L. Mollette, 40, of Turkey Knob, Paintsville, pleaded guilty to charges including third-degree assault on a police officer, second-degree fleeing or evading a police officer (on foot), third-degree criminal mischief, third-degree criminal trespassing, second-degree disorderly conduct, resisting arrest, public intoxication and menacing, alongside an additional bail jumping charge added in January 2018.
Prosecutors offered amended charges that could result in Mollette serving five years of supervised probation in lieu of three years to serve in prison on the assault charge, 12 months on the fleeing charge, 90 days on the charges of criminal mischief and disorderly conduct, 12 months on the resisting arrest charge and 90 days each on the counts of public intoxication and menacing, all to be served concurrently. The criminal trespassing charge was recommended to be dismissed under the agreement.
According to court documents, Paintsville Police Officer Zach Mitchell responded to a call on Sept. 8, 2017 of an individual who had left the Paul B. Hall Regional Medical Center and appeared to be under the influence and made contact with Mollette on private property at Cemetery Road.
Mitchell said in the citation that Mollette was staggering and slurring his speech. According to the citation, Mitchell attempted to detain Mollette and Mollette pulled away and Mitchell performed a “takedown.” Mitchell said that Mollette was attempting to break free, kicking Mitchell in the leg, at which point Mitchell attempted another “takedown,” was unsuccessful and Mitchell subsequently deployed his Taser.
The citation said that after the Taser completed its cycle, Mollette began fighting again, resulting in a second cycle of the Taser before Mollette got up and ran. Mitchell said in the citation that he made commands for Mollette to stop, but Mollette failed to comply. According to court documents, Mitchell caught Mollette, taking him down again and deploying pepper spray, which allowed him to detain Mollette in handcuffs.
After placing Mollette in his patrol vehicle, Mitchell wrote in the citation, Mollette began attempting to kick the windows out of the cruiser, resulting in a second deployment of pepper spray. Mitchell noted in the citation that his uniform pants were damaged in the incident.
Mollette was taken to PBH and cleared medically before being housed in the Big Sandy Regional Detention Center, where he was released later the same day to await court dates.
Sentencing in Mollette’s case was set for Feb. 1.