Man accused of stealing beer from Mesa store, assaulting police officer - East Valley Tribune: Public Safety

Man accused of stealing beer from Mesa store, assaulting police officer

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Posted: Monday, September 3, 2012 11:58 am | Updated: 9:54 pm, Wed Jul 24, 2013.

A Taser stun gun and baton had little effect on a man police tried to arrest at Mesa convenience store for stealing two beers.

About 3:30 p.m. Sunday, a Mesa police officer responded to the AM/PM store at 25 W. McKellips regarding someone who had stolen two beers. The officer approached Matangi Tai, 36, as he was drinking the beer, according to police, who said Tai then pushed the officer and advanced on him.

The officer deployed his Taser, but Tai pulled the wires off of the probes and continued to advance, police said. So the officer hit Tai several times in the thigh with his baton -- but that also failed to subdue him, a police news release said, and "the officer had to go hands on with the suspect and was able to take him to the ground and place him in handcuffs."

Tai was treated at Arizona Regional Hospital and then booked on suspicion of aggravated assault on police, shoplifting, and consuming alcohol in public.

The officer was not injured.

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