By Patrick Yost
What started as an investigation into a man allegedly striking a woman on Aqua Road ended with three officers injured while attempting an arrest of the man suspected in the assault.
Clayton Glenn Stewart, 49, Madison was detained and arrested by Madison Police Department officers Emily Fitchjarrell, Stacey Eaton and Morgan County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Christopher Lash during a violent traffic stop on Amtico Road.
Reports state that after Deputy Lash had investigated claims that Stewart had struck a woman at 8:30 a.m. at an Aqua Road residence and then left in a white pickup truck, Lash called out to fellow officers to be on the lookout for the truck traveling north on Monticello Highway. The woman also alleged that Stewart was intoxicated at the time of the incident.
Officers Fitchjarrell and Eaton made contact with a white truck matching the description of the truck that left the Aqua Road residence near the Exxon convenience store on Monticello Road. Officer Fitchjarrell performed a traffic stop on the truck on Amtico Road near the entrance of the Love’s Truck Stop. Officer Fitchjarrell requested that Stewart step out of the truck and he allegedly refused. “No, I’m not going to do that,” he allegedly said.
A passenger in the vehicle exited the vehicle and stood near the rear of the truck. Both Officer Fitchjarrell and Officer Eaton attempted to turn the truck’s engine off but, reports state, Stewart reached for the keys to start the truck. Both Fitchjarrell and Eaton then “struggled with Mr. Stewart before they were able to get him out of the vehicle,” reports state.
Reports state that Fitchjarrell received wounds to her neck and right hand. Officer Eaton received a wound to his head, and Deputy Lash reported that while he was trying to search Stewart while he was handcuffed, Stewart struck him in the jaw with his right elbow.
Once Stewart was placed in the back seat of a patrol car, Fitchjarrell reports, he cursed at officers, coughed and screamed that he had “the corona.” Fitchjarrell said she attempted to communicate with Morgan County Dispatch but couldn’t because of Stewart’s “noise level…”
Officer Eaton searched the vehicle and allegedly located a .410 shotgun, a Taurus 12 gauge shotgun and a Mossberg .270 caliber rifle. Eaton also allegedly found an open bottle of brown alcohol.
Stewart faces charges of DUI, possession of an open container, driving while license suspended and two counts of felony obstruction of law enforcement officers. He also faces one count of felony obstruction of law enforcement officers in Morgan County in regards to striking Lash on the jaw.