Officer Assaulted During Traffic Stop

Time: 5 p.m.
Date: Monday, March 27, 2017
Location: Legion Drive and Hendricks Street, Paducah
Suspect: Marvin L. Hayes, 43, address unknown, arrested on charges of improper display of registration plates, possession of an open alcoholic beverage container in a motor vehicle, driving under the influence, trafficking in marijuana, resisting arrest, third-degree assault on a police officer, possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, third-degree criminal mischief and first-degree possession of a controlled substance (cocaine)

A routine traffic stop turned into a fight for a handgun Monday afternoon when a Paducah police officer stopped a car on the city’s south side.

Officer Nickolas Francescon saw a Nissan Altima with an improper license plate about 5 p.m. Monday at Legion Drive and Hendricks Street. He stopped the car on Ella Drive and, as he walked up to the car, he saw the driver put something in his pocket.

When Francescon asked about it, the driver – later identified as Marvin L. Hayes – handed a bag of marijuana and a digital scale to the officer. Francescon said Hayes appeared nervous and anxious, so he asked him to step out of the car.

Francescon said Hayes kept reaching for his ankle, even after being told not to. When Francescon tried to detain and handcuff Hayes, he said Hayes became combative, and fled on foot. Francescon grabbed him, and Hayes squared off as if to fight the officer, then turned to run again.

Francescon tackled Hayes, and a .45-caliber handgun fell from Hayes’ person onto the ground. Hayes and the officer fought on the ground for more than three minutes; the entire time Hayes continued to try to reach the gun.

Francescon managed to hold Hayes down until other officers arrived to assist. As the officer struggled with Hayes, a citizen called the city’s Emergency Communications Service Department to report the fight. She told dispatchers that the officer needed assistance and that there was a gun on the ground. She kept dispatchers informed until back-up officers arrived.

Officers found 52 grams of marijuana, four grams of an unidentified white substance, less than one gram of cocaine and an open alcoholic beverage either on Hayes’ person or in his vehicle. Officers said he smelled of alcohol, but refused field sobriety tests.

Hayes was taken to Baptist Health Paducah for treatment of injuries, then booked into McCracken County Regional Jail. Francescon also was treated at Baptist Health Paducah for minor injuries.