POLAND — A 21-year-old Lewiston man was arrested at Range Pond State Park on Sunday night and charged with punching an Androscoggin County Sheriff’s deputy several times in the head.

Richard Perkins, who police described as a mentally challenged client of Opportunity Enterprises in Lewiston, was charged with assault and disorderly conduct.

At about 9 p.m. Sunday, Deputy Thomas Slivinski and Mechanic Falls police officer James Avery were sent to the park when it was reported that Perkins had become unruly with Opportunity Enterprises staff members during an afternoon outing.

When it was time to leave, Perkins became belligerent and unruly, spitting and assaulting staff members and spitting at other park attendees, police said.

Park rangers and lifeguards attempted to assist, while the staff tried to coax the disturbed man into the car to leave, police said.

Police said when the officers arrived and spoke to Perkins, he initially agreed to cooperate with staff and to go home with them.

While Perkins was being escorted to a van, he unexpectedly assaulted Slivinski by punching the officer in the head, police said. The officer was struck several more times as he grappled with Perkins.

Officer Avery subdued Perkins with a Taser. He was taken to St. Mary’s Regional Medical Center for evaluation and then to the Androscoggin County Jail in Auburn. Perkins was later released on bail.

Slivinski was not seriously hurt in the attack. The incident remained under investigation on Monday.


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