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Prisoner assaults transport officer

By Greg Bird

Louis Todd Souleyretette, 46, of Pine Knot was arrested Tuesday morning after he reportedly attempted to shoplift from the Big M Discount store in Whitley City. When confronted by store personnel Souleyrette started to fight with the staff. Deputy Tommy Lewis, who also works at the store, had to discharge pepper spray to subdue the combative man.
Once Souleyrette was taken in to custody he was charged with robbery, theft by unlawful taking, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct.
After processing, Souleyrette was taken to the Lake Cumberland Regional Hospital to be checked out and released in to the custody of Transport Officer Craig Jones. As he was being transported Souleyrette apparently managed to tear off a long strip of rubber from the seat of the cruiser. When the vehicle was about six miles from the detention center Souleyrette attempted to lunge through the open barrier between him and Deputy Clark and wrap the cord around the driver’s neck.
Deputy Clark, who was uninjured in the assault, stated he was able to see Souleyrette in the rear-view mirror as the attack began and was able to defend himself before subduing the prisoner once again.
Souleyrette, who did not have a history of violent offenses, only traffic and drug charges, had multiple outstanding warrants on him at the time of his arrest; three for failure to appear and six for non-payment of fines.

Following the incident Souleyrette was also charged with escape and assaul, but additional charges could be pending Sheriff Randy Waters said.

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