Rockford's Independent Newspaper

Four charged for fighting with Rockford officer

By Jim Hagerty

ROCKFORD — Four people face criminal charges for allegedly ganging up on a Rockford Police officer last weekend.

Austin Triplett, 18, was charged with battery, obstructing a police officer and disorderly conduct. Tony Westergaard Jr., 20, faces charges of aggravated battery to a police officer, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. Adam Westergaard, 18, was charged with aggravated battery to a police officer and disorderly conduct. Harriett Westergaard, 55, faces a single count of aggravated battery to a police officer.

Authorities say the charges stem from an incident that unfolded Sunday, May 27, when the officer responded to a report that an elderly man was being harassed in the 1900 block of Midway Drive. The officer instructed three men and a woman to move away from a vehicle so she could talk to the elderly man who was inside the car. The four people refused to comply and allegedly surrounded the officer.

As the officer used a Taser on one of the men and attempted to take hum into custody, another man shoved her, which sparked a struggle between the officer and all four suspects. A neighbor helped break up the scuffle until responding officers arrived.

The suspects were arrested at the scene and lodged in the Winnebago County Jail. They’ve since posted bail and are awaiting court appearances.

The officer was not injured. R.

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