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Grand Jury indicts man who punched officer

The Wilbarger County Grand Jury convened in December, issuing 49 indictments against 39 individuals.

One of those indicted was John Albert Franco, Jr. He was indicted for the Felony 2 offense of assault on a peace officer, which allegedly occurred June 12, 2020.On that date, at around 3:10 p.m., animal control was dispatched to the 2800 block of Bowie for a report of a loose dog, a pit bull, chasing people. A police officer arrived to back-up animal control. According to police reports, an officer attempted to detain a subject at the scene, the man identified as John Albert Franco, 21 of Vernon, began to walk away. The officer followed and grabbed Franco’s arm. Franco allegedly spun around began punching the officer in the face.

A scuffle ensued and the officer was able to detain Franco. The officer was then transported by Vernon EMS to Wilbarger General Hospital for minor injuries, including a swollen eye and busted lip. Franco was uninjured and transported to Wilbarger County Jail where he was charged with assault on a public servant.

“The officer showed great restraint, and judgement in being able to subdue the subject without escalating the violence,” VPD Capt. Wayne Hodges stated at the time.

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