Suspect allegedly punches deputy in the face in River Road area

A deputy was investigating after spotting a stolen vehicle off River Road.

Posted: Oct 26, 2021 3:41 PM

EUGENE, Ore. -- What started out as a stolen vehicle case ended with a deputy getting punched in the face by a suspect, authorities say.

The Lane County Sheriff’s Office said at about 11 a.m. on Monday, a deputy was patrolling the Whitely Boat Landing area near River Road and spotted a stolen vehicle. The black Nissan Altima was parked and a man was standing next to it.

Authorities said the deputy recognized the man as Nicholas Jenkins, 36, from his previous interactions with law enforcement.

Believing that Jenkins was involved with the vehicle, deputies made contact and went to detain him. That’s when Jenkins reportedly punched one of the deputies in the face, hitting him near his eye.

A Taser was used to take Jenkins into custody. Methamphetamine paraphernalia was reportedly found in his pocket.

Medics took a look at Jenkins, and he was then taken to the Lane County Jail. He faces charges of assaulting a public safety officer, resisting arrest, and unauthorized use of a vehicle.

The deputy suffered minor injuries and was able to complete his shift, the sheriff’s office added.

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