BATTLE CREEK, MICH. - Shane Farlin, a U.S. Army veteran running against Mayor Dave Walters for a seat on the Battle Creek City Commission, bit a Bellevue Police Department officer while being arrested in 2006, according to a police report of the incident.
Farlin was approached by officers shortly after 2 a.m. on July 8 of that year in a downtown parking lot, because he was making "chopping motions with his hands, as if he was striking someone" and appeared to be drunk, the report said.
"I want to get tased tonight," he told the officers.
He would. Four times.
The officers left Farlin, but, after he began shouting at them, went back to arrest him for disorderly conduct, the report said. He ran, jumped over the railing of the bridge that runs over the Battle Creek River on Main Street and hung onto the outside.
Three officers tried to keep him from falling into the river. He refused to come back over the rail, saying "I'm ready to die," according to the report.
An officer hit him with a Taser. He bit Officer Joseph Merignac on the chest "near my armpit" and grabbed "my privates," according to the report, and was hit with Tasers twice more before he could be pulled back onto the bridge.
Farlin still wouldn't follow orders from police, and "I then activated the taser again until the subject obeyed," Merignac wrote.
Farlin was charged with aggravated assault and resisting a police officer, both felonies. He pleaded guilty to similar misdemeanor charges. He was sentenced to 15 days in jail, 24 months probation and 100 hours of community service.
Farlin alleged Wednesday that Merignac slept with his wife while he was on military duty.
"There was extenuating circumstances," said Farlin, who also claimed in the report that he had post-traumatic stress disorder after the arrest, which Merignac did not believe at the time. "I was not willing to take a chance, so I took a misdemeanor."
Reached by phone Monday, Merignac laughed when he heard that Farlin had accused him of sleeping with his wife and said the only contact he had with Farlin was through law enforcement.
"I don't even know who his wife is," Merignac said. "That really throws me for a loop. I have no clue what he's talking about. As far as I'm concerned, any accusations about what he said are erroneous."
Bellevue Police Chief Timothy Griffin declined to comment Friday because he did not witness the events.
Farlin also has had personal protection orders filed against him by an ex-wife and an ex-girlfriend over the past 2½ years, according to Calhoun County Circuit Court records.
"I don't believe he is the perfect candidate to represent youth or Ward 5," said Teresa West, Farlin's ex-fiancee, who brought Farlin's PPO history and the assault on a police officer to the attention of The Enquirer.
On June 3, 2015, Farlin's ex-wife, who now goes by Kristen Dey, accused him of threatening to file an adultery case against her with the Air Force. She also claimed that Farlin tracked her movements on her cellphone and called her a bad mother and a horrible servicewoman.
At Farlin's request, the court terminated the PPO on July 13, 2015, after he and Dey reached an agreement, with her later saying that he had promised to stop harassing and texting her.
Farlin said he and his wife were married for 10 years and are now good friends.
"Anybody that knows me knows I stand by the fact that I had a healthy relationship with my ex-wife," he said.
Dey said she and Farlin now have an amicable relationship. They have a daughter together, who is now 4 years old.
"We were in a long-term relationship, and he wasn't ready for it to end," she said. "Now we get along very well. We co-parent very well. He's grown up a lot.
"He apologized for everything," she added. "He was hurt."
Farlin said he filed a PPO against West in September 2016, but she could not be located and served the order by law enforcement officers.
According to court records, he alleged that West threatened to blackmail him and told him that he could lose his home because he was stealing credit card information from his ex-wife.
Farlin asked the court to bar her from their home in Battle Creek.
A day after the time to serve West with the order expired, Farlin said, she filed a PPO against him. He then refiled the PPO and it was denied.
West said she went into hiding with Farlin's best friend because she feared he was going to physically hurt her.
"I had no idea that he had filed a PPO," she said. "I didn't know it had expired. I just did what the cops told me to do."
On September 2016, West claimed an intoxicated Farlin pushed her to the floor as she was trying to prevent him from breaking down a door to their children's room, according to the court records.
She also claimed that he threatened to kill himself and that he said that she was making him want to kill himself, according to West's account in the court records.
West accused him of choking her and smashing her face into a refrigerator.
"It's not true, unsubstantiated," Farlin said. "It's not true at all."
Farlin said it was just a bad relationship, and Dey told him that West was going to do everything she could to ruin his bid for a seat on the City Commission.
"Me and my ex-girlfriend, we did not mesh, got into fights and arguments," he said. "It was for the best that we separated. We’re not compatible in any way."
"I don’t have a history of abusive relationships," he added.
Contact Battle Creek Enquirer education reporter Noe Hernandez at 269-966-0684 or email@example.com.
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