A Guilderland man is accused of seriously injuring two law enforcement officers on one recent Saturday night.
James D. Kunkel, 24, is accused of fighting with Glenville police officers placing him under arrest after the Oktoberfest fireworks late Sept. 27, injuring the arm of one officer. Later, authorities said he fought with corrections officers booking him into the Schenectady County jail, hitting one officer in the head with a telephone receiver and then breaking that officer’s hand in the ensuing struggle.
Glenville police spokesman Lt. Stephen Janik said Kunkel had attended the town’s annual Oktoberfest celebration in Maalwyck Park and was intoxicated. Janik said that as Kunkel was leaving following the fireworks display that concluded the event, he threw a beer bottle at a moving truck on Route 5. He is also accused of walking into the path of vehicles, according to papers filed in court.
The driver of the truck alerted police, who then approached Kunkel, but he allegedly refused to stop and fought with Officer Meredith Kaiser. Two other officers joined in to take him into custody.
Kaiser sustained an injury to her arm that Janik said is expected to keep the six-year veteran out of work for three weeks.
After Kunkel was taken to jail, authorities said he struggled with officers in the intake area. Kunkel is accused of grabbing the phone in the booking area, and when he was ordered to hang it up, he instead swung it and hit William Coonradt in the head, causing a cut that required stitches. Coonradt was allowing Kunkel to make his standard phone call when Kunkel turned on him, Sheriff Dominic Dagostino said.
Coonradt’s left hand was also broken as he tried to bring Kunkel under control, according to the arrest report. Other officers and a sergeant eventually restrained Kunkel with handcuffs and pepper spray. Coonradt remains out of work, Dagostino said.
In the Glenville incident, Kunkel faces one count of second-degree assault, a felony, along with misdemeanor counts of criminal mischief, reckless endangerment and resisting arrest and violation-level charges of harassment and disorderly conduct.
In the incident at the jail, Kunkel faces one count of second-degree assault and a misdemeanor allegation obstructing governmental administration.
Kunkel posted $15,000 bond and was released Friday, jail records show.