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William J. Ihlenfeld, II

1125 Chapline Street, Federal Building, Suite 3000 ● Wheeling, WV 26003
(304) 234-0100 ● Contact: Chris Zumpetta-Parr, Public Affairs Specialist


January 30, 2014

Triadelphia Resident Convicted on
Obstructing and Resisting Officers Charges

Defendant Faces up to Two Years in Prison

WHEELING, WEST VIRGINIA - A 43-year old Triadelphia, West Virginia, man was convicted this week by a federal jury in a one-day trial before Chief Judge John Preston Bailey.

According to United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II, MICHAEL BEHRENS was convicted on two misdemeanor offenses of “Obstructing and Resisting an Officer.” Evidence offered at trial showed that just prior to the reading of the verdict in BEHRENS’ brother’s criminal trial, Judge Frederick P. Stamp, Jr. had advised all spectators to keep their comments and emotions to themselves upon hearing the verdict. Upon the reading of the verdict, BEHRENS stood up, kicked the bench in front of him, made a vulgar verbal outburst and existed the courtroom by throwing open a door.

Deputy U.S. Marshals ran after BEHRENS and ordered him to stop in the lobby of the federal building. When they told him that the Judge wanted him back in the courtroom, BEHRENS refused and said that he was leaving. Deputies were escorting him back through the lobby when he suddenly pulled away and a struggle ensued. BEHRENS forcibly resisted the deputies and ignored their verbal commands. With the assistance of Court Security Officer, BEHRENS was brought under control, restrained and taken to the U.S. Marshals’ holding cell. He was then taken to Judge Stamp’s courtroom.

BEHRENS, who is free on bond pending sentencing, faces up to 1 year in prison on each count.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David J. Perri was investigated by the United States Marshals Service.

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