Jury convicts Louisiana man of assaulting officer

Aug. 30—PINEVILLE, Mo. — Jurors deliberated about two hours Wednesday before finding a Louisiana man guilty of disarming and assaulting a Newton County jailer who was guarding him at a hospital where he had been taken for medical attention.

A McDonald County jury convicted 42-year-old Michael R. Durison, of Honeston, Louisiana, of first-degree assault, disarming a police officer and armed criminal action at the conclusion of a two-day trial moved to Pineville on a change of venue from Newton County.

Durison was being held Sept. 18 of last year at the Newton County Jail on an out-of-state warrant when he was transported to Freeman Neosho Hospital for a medical reason.

Joshua Ardmore, a shift supervisor at the jail, was relieving another jail staff member who had taken Durison to the hospital in restraints. Durison had been seen by a doctor and was alone with Ardmore when he jumped up off an examination room table and declared that he was not going back to jail.

The inmate shoved Ardmore through a sliding door out into a hallway. During the struggle that ensued, Ardmore pulled out his stun gun to try to subdue him. But Durison wrested the device away from Ardmore and turned it on him, shocking him twice and leaving him disoriented.

Durison then got to his feet and fled with the stun gun. He was not caught and returned to jail until 10 days later.

The jury acquitted the defendant of a fourth count of first-degree robbery for the theft of the officer's device. Judge Kevin Selby has set a sentencing hearing for Oct. 4.