549 N.E.2d 400 (Ind.App. 1 Dist. 1990), 82A01-8909-CR-361, Armstead v. State

Docket Nº:82A01-8909-CR-361.
Citation:549 N.E.2d 400
Party Name:Tyrus ARMSTEAD, Defendant-Appellant, v. STATE of Indiana, Plaintiff-Appellee.
Case Date:February 07, 1990
Court:Court of Appeals of Indiana

Page 400

549 N.E.2d 400 (Ind.App. 1 Dist. 1990)

Tyrus ARMSTEAD, Defendant-Appellant,


STATE of Indiana, Plaintiff-Appellee.

No. 82A01-8909-CR-361.

Court of Appeals of Indiana, First District.

February 7, 1990

Russell T. Woodson, Evansville, for defendant-appellant.

Linley E. Pearson, Atty. Gen., Danielle Sheff, Deputy Atty. Gen., Indianapolis, for plaintiff-appellee.

BAKER, Judge.


Defendant-appellant, Tyrus Armstead (Armstead), was convicted of battery, a Class D felony, 1 resisting law enforcement, a Class D felony, 2 and two counts of resisting law enforcement, a Class A misdemeanor. 3 He appeals the trial judge's jurisdiction, one misdemeanor conviction, and the resisting law enforcement felony conviction.

We affirm in part and reverse in part.


On April 27, 1988, Detective Clayton Grace (Detective Grace) and Officers Phil George (Officer George) and Kent Walker (Officer Walker) of the Evansville Police Department responded to a radio dispatch report that three black males were stealing aluminum siding. Armstead and a companion, both black males, approached the officers

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as they questioned Armstead's brother about the theft. Armstead's brother had just named his two accomplices when Armstead and the companion, who was one of the accomplices, appeared. Detective Grace sent Officer George to ask the men's names. Armstead backed away from Officer George, began yelling obscenities at him, and assumed a pugilistic stance. Officer George told Armstead he needed to talk to him, but Armstead remained confrontational and appeared prepared to flee.

Detective Grace and Officer Walker came up behind Officer George and Detective Grace told Armstead repeatedly that he could be arrested if he did not calm down. Armstead backed into a chain link fence and continued to yell. Detective Grace said Armstead was under arrest and ordered him to turn around to be searched for weapons. When Armstead failed to comply, Detective Grace attempted to turn him around. At that moment, Armstead hit Officer Walker in the nose, breaking it. A struggle ensued in which all three policemen were injured. The incident resulted in Armstead's arrest.

After a trial by jury, Armstead was convicted of Class D felony battery and Class D felony resisting law enforcement against Officer Walker, and of Class A misdemeanor resisting law enforcement against Detective Grace and Officer George. Armstead appeals.


Armstead raises several issues for our review which we restate as follows:

  1. Whether the special judge had jurisdiction over the case.

  2. Whether a single affray between a suspect and more than one police officer can lead to multiple charges and convictions for resisting law enforcement.

  3. Whether convictions for Class D felony resisting law enforcement and Class D felony battery arising from a single affray amount to double jeopardy.



Armstead first argues Judge O'Connor lacked authority to preside over the trial. Generally, causes may be transferred from the Vanderburgh Circuit Court to the Vanderburgh Superior Court under...

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