Cop assaulted while aiding man standing in middle of 23rd St.

Cop assaulted while aiding man standing in middle of 23rd St.

A Richmond police sergeant was attacked and injured while aiding an apparently intoxicated man who had been standing in the middle of traffic on 23rd Street Saturday night.

The incident unfolded about 10:15 p.m. in the 700 block of 23rd Street, when Richmond police Sgt. Don Nelson was driving his patrol car and noticed a man standing in the middle of the busy street. Several cars served to avoid running him over, police said.

The sergeant quickly made a u-turn and positioned his car to shield the man. He then got out of his car and contacted the man, who appeared intoxicated.

Sgt. Nelson then helped guide the man to the sidewalk and asked where he lived, police said. The man become belligerent and, without warning, punched the sergeant in the face, leading to a physical struggle.

The sergeant was able to detain the suspect and arrest him for assault on an officer.

But the sergeant ended up with a broken nose and contusions, police said.

“The department is relieved that Sergeant Nelson was able to go home to his family after this violent confrontation,” police Lt. Felix Tan said.