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A man waved a reflective metal pole at customers in a Walmart parking lot, coughed at them, and screamed “I am COVID!” authorities said.
Mount Pleasant Police responded on Thursday to the Sturtevant Walmart location at 3049 Oakes Road for a report of a man swinging a stick and cursing at customers, according to a criminal complaint filed Monday in Racine County Circuit Court.
Police encountered a man later identified as David E. Berryhill Jr., 35, of Racine holding a three-foot-long reflective pole. Berryhill was ordered to drop the pole, complied, and was placed in handcuffs in the back of a squad car, according to the complaint.
Michael Smits, the responding officer, called the Racine County Jail about Berryhill and heard a cracking sound from the rear of the car. Smits and another officer opened the door, and noticed the defendant had freed his left hand from his hand cuff, and was hitting the inside of the window with it, according to the complaint.
Officers removed Berryhill from the squad car, re-handcuffed him, and put him in the rear of a different car.
Smits was making an additional phone call when he heard pounding coming from the back of the second car. Berryhill was spotted kicking the window of the second car. Officers next tried to remove Berryhill’s sandals to prevent him from kicking the windows, but Berryhill stuck his legs out the squad car door and kept them extended, according to the complaint. Officers were eventually able to push Berryhill into the car, according to the complaint.
Racine County Court records indicate Berryill faces two prior court cases with multiple cases. On March 19, he was charged with possession of cocaine, THC, and drug paraphernalia and five counts of bail jumping. On Jan. 22, Berryhill was charged with a single count of disorderly conduct.
Berryhill faces two counts of felony bail jumping, two counts of misdemeanor bail jumping, and one count each of resisting an officer and disorderly conduct in the latest round of charges.
Berryhill faces up to six years in prison and $10,000 if convicted on each of the felony bail jumping charges. Berryhill faces up to nine months in prison and a $10,000 fine if convicted for the misdemeanor bail jumping charges. Berryhill faces up to nine months in prison and $10,000 in fines for resisting an officer and up to 90 days in prison and $1,000 if convicted of the disorderly conduct charge.
Berryhill remained in Racine County Jail Monday evening on a $6,150 bond, according to the Racine County Jail website.
A preliminary hearing in the case is set for 9:15 a.m. on April 7.