Woodford County Sheriff Discusses Meinders Case

By WEEK Producer

August 25, 2011 Updated Aug 25, 2011 at 11:14 PM CDT

The Woodford County Sheriff says he is "concerned" about the reports of police over-reaction last Sunday morning in Washburn.

Low Point Resident Kenny Meinders remains in "critical" condition at OSF St. Francis Medical Center after what Meinders relatives say was a beating at the hands of Washburn and Woodford County Police.

Woodford County Sheriff Jim Pierceall talked with reporters today, saying that officers who went to Washburn on a domestic dispute call found a woman with "obvious facial trauma" was identified, and that when officers tried to arrest Kenny Meinders, he fought with them.

"After the suspect was approached by officers, he immediatelly became combative, kicking and striking officers. Officers employed their tasers in an effort to gain control, which had no effect on him. He continued fighting and attempted to disarm two police officers. After he was subdued, medical attention was immediately summonded for the suspect and officers. I am deeply concerned about this incident and I would ask that the press refrain from using any speculation and remain unbaised as they continue to report on this incident," Woodford County Sheriff Jim Pierceall.

Two officers have been put on paid leave.

They are Woodford County Sheriff's deputy Doug Fletcher and Adam Ragon, who works part time for both the county and Washburn police.

Pierceall said he couldn't comment about other officers who might have been involved. He said Illinois State Police and Metamora officers had responded to the domestic disturbance call.

The Washburn Village board will hold a meeting next Tuesday evening for residents to voice their concerns.

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