BRENTWOOD — A Deerfield man was sentenced on Wednesday to a year in jail for assaulting a police officer who came to his home in response to a 911 call.
He will remain free on bail while his case is being appealed.
Stanley West, 41, told a judge during his sentencing hearing that his own struggles with post-traumatic stress disorder prompted his aggressive actions on the night of Dec. 19 against Deerfield police Officer Roger St. Onge.
“I’d like to say I’m sorry to Officer St. Onge,” West said. “I had no intention of hurting anyone including the officer involved.”A Rockingham County jury convicted West in August of three misdemeanor counts of simple assault and a single count of resisting arrest.
St. Onge went to West’s home in Deerfield around 12:30 a.m. in response to a 911 call.
West told St. Onge that no one called 911, and did not allow the officer into his home. He tackled him to the ground and repeatedly punching him.
Defense lawyer Richard Samdperil argued at trial that West believed St. Onge, who was dressed in a police uniform, may have been impersonating a police officer in an effort to break into the home.
West said no one at his home called 911, and that he and his wife were awoken by St. Onge.
On Wednesday, Samdperil also submitted under seal court records suggesting that West suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder stemming from the murder of a sister.
“There is a history of trauma in his life and never been addressed before,” Samdperil said.Delker told West the records helped him better understand the circumstances leading up to the assault, but said that West should have handled the situation differently.
He noted that West had no prior criminal history or run-ins with police prior to the night he attacked the officer.“What is obvious from the jury’s verdict is that your actions went well beyond any law-abiding citizen in normal circumstances,” Delker said.
Deputy County Attorney Tom Reid argued that St. Onge was in a struggle for his own life when West tackled him to the ground, sat on top of him and repeatedly punched the officer in the head. St. Onge was able to get at his gun or a Taser.
West’s wife then fired a handgun in the air outside causing an end to the struggle.
“This was a rage and an attack that was only stopped because shots were fired,” Reid said.
If West ultimately serves jail time, he will qualify for work release, the judge decided.
He was ordered to undergo an anger management evaluation and to continue with counseling.
He also received a suspended 12-month jail term for a resisting arrest conviction.