Police: Newberry Twp. man assaulted cop, deputy during arrest

A Newberry Township man accused of punching an officer in the face during an arrest also struck a deputy while at York County's central booking unit, according to officials.

Fairview Township Police say Benjamin Celso Torres was drunk when he punched the officer in the face late Saturday, March 10. 

Torres, 32, of the 100 block of Winding Hill Drive, is charged with aggravated assault, simple assault, resisting arrest, public drunkenness and harassment. 

Benjamin Torres

Officer assault: Fairview Township Police were sent to a home in the 700 block of Sawmill Road for a report of someone making threats and refusing to leave, according to police. 

When officers arrived, they found Torres hiding outside by the porch in the back of the residence, officials said.  He told police he needed to leave the home because those inside were crazy, court documents state.

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Police say Torres was acting like he was drunk and on drugs.

While speaking with officers, Torres swayed back and forth and rubbed his hands together, police said. He asked if they were "one of them," and he was not making sense, according to officials. He then calmed down and gave the officers his personal information, police said.

Afterward, Torres assumed a "fighting posture" and clenched his fists, documents state. Police say Torres punched an officer in the face and tried running away.

A second officer tackled Torres, and they struggled until a Taser was used to subdue Torres, documents state. Neither officers suffered any major injuries, according to police.

While officers were taking Torres to the county's central booking unit for arraignment, he kicked the door and window of the car, court documents state. Police put him in leg shackles to keep him from injuring himself or causing damage to the car, officials said.

Assault on deputy:  Torres arrived at the booking unit shortly after midnight Sunday, and he was placed in a holding cell, court documents state.

The York County Sheriff's Office said deputies went into the holding cell when Torres' shackles became stuck to the bench. 

They removed the shackles and placed them back on him, court documents state. After he was shackled, the deputies told him to stay back so they could exit the cell, but Torres tried exiting it himself, according to officials.

A deputy put his arm up to keep Torres in the cell, but Torres punched him in the nose, court documents state. Four additional deputies entered the cell and took control of him, but he continued resisting, and he refused to listen to the deputies who told him to get on his stomach, officials said.

Deputy Gary Landis pulled a Taser out and pointed it at Torres while telling him to get on his stomach, charging documents indicate. Torres listened, and deputies then placed him in an emergency restraint chair, according  to officials.

He resisted while they tried placing him in the chair but eventually stopped after a deputy told him he would use the Taser on him, charging documents state. Torres was placed in the chair at 1 a.m. and was removed from the chair at 4 a.m. without incident, officials said. 

The deputy he allegedly hit was sent to York Hospital for treatment of his injuries, police said. 

For Torres' alleged assault on the deputy, he is charged with aggravated assault, attempted simple assault, disorderly conduct and harassment. 

He was arraigned on the charges in both cases Sunday morning. He remains in York County Prison without bail. District Judge David Eshbach denied bail to assure the safety of the community, according to online court records.

Torres does not have an attorney listed. His preliminary hearing is scheduled for March 28 at District Judge Scott Gross' office.

— Reach Christopher Dornblaser at cdornblaser@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @YDDornblaser.