Martial artist accused of fighting police, dog found competent for trial

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Wednesday, August 22, 2012

— A mixed martial arts fighter charged with injuring Janesville police officers and a police dog earlier this summer is competent to stand trial, a Rock County judge rule Tuesday.

James Warfield, 34, Green Bay, is charged with battery of a police officer, resisting, harassment of a police animal and criminal damage to property. He was arrested June 9 after a fight with police outside McDonald's restaurant, 1622 Milton Ave., Janesville.

Police responded after a McDonald's manager reported Warfield had thrown a large rock through a window. When police arrived, Warfield punched one officer in the face. The officer fell so hard his head bounced, according to police reports.

Warfield is a mixed martial artist with a 22-11 career fighting record at events around the Midwest, according to his profile on the Mixed Martial Arts news website Sherdog.com.

When police tried to arrest Warfield, he continued punching and kicking. He pulled loose from the charge of one Taser and avoided three others, according to the criminal complaint.

He did not yield to batons, pepper spray or Hardy, one of the police department's trained German shepherds. Warfield kicked and punched the dog in the face and body, according to the criminal complaint.

The fifth Taser shot, deployed by the fifth officer to arrive on the scene, dropped Warfield as he was walking away from McDonald's on Milton Avenue.

One officer needed 11 stitches in his lip. Other officers had minor bruises and scrapes and did not need medical attention. Hardy also did not need medical attention, Dep. Chief John Olsen said.

On June 7, Warfield had been treated and released from St. Mary's Janesville Hospital after a traffic crash, Olsen said.

Warfield was ticketed for operating after revocation and inattentive driving in connection with the crash, according to online court documents. He fell asleep at the wheel while driving south on Interstate 90/39, and his car rolled down the embankment toward Delavan Drive, according to police department records.

Warfield's traffic tickets will track through court alongside the criminal charges, Judge Kenneth Forbeck said Tuesday in court.

Forbeck on June 18 ordered Warfield to get an inpatient psychological evaluation at Mendota Mental Health Institute in Madison. A psychologist's report was issued Aug. 2, and attorneys Tuesday agreed Warfield could stand trial.

In order to be competent to stand trial, a person must be able to assist in his or her defense and understand the charges he or she faces.

Warfield is scheduled to appear in court Tuesday for a preliminary hearing. He is in custody at the Rock County Jail on a $5,500 cash bond.

Last updated: 5:06 pm Tuesday, August 27, 2013

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