BARRE — A Williamstown man has been placed on probation for two years for injuring two police officers.

Dana Timothy Bowen, 21, pleaded no contest Friday in Washington County criminal court in Barre to misdemeanor counts of impeding a public officer and simple assault on a protected individual. Bowen was given a sentence of 3 months to 2 years, all suspended, and was placed on probation for 2 years. If he can’t successfully complete probation, he could face up to 2 years in prison.

Bowen had been facing a felony count of impeding a public officer, but the charge was amended to a misdemeanor by the state, per the plea agreement. The state also dismissed a felony count of aggravated assault and a misdemeanor count of resisting arrest.

Bowen had planned to plead guilty to the charges at Friday’s hearing as part of the plea agreement, but he changed his pleas to no contest because he said he doesn’t remember much of what happened. He said he was having an anxiety attack when the incident occurred and blacked out.

Officer James McGowan, of the Barre City police, said in his affidavit a woman called police in October to report a man was following her. McGowan said he found that man and another man, later identified as Bowen, on Brook Street.

McGowan said he tried to identify Bowen, but he ignored the officer at first. He said he asked Bowen for his ID, but Bowen declined. The officer said Bowen was hindering his investigation so he asked Bowen to leave.

McGowan said Bowen told him he “had” something for the officer and then punched McGowan in the head multiple times. The officer said he called for backup and took Bowen to the ground to stop the assault. Officer David Wallant arrived on scene and McGowan said the two officers tried to take Bowen into custody for the assault, but he was resisting. McGowan used pepper spray on Bowen to get him to comply, according to court records.

McGowan said Wallant suffered an injury to his arm when trying to arrest Bowen and was taken to Central Vermont Medical Center for treatment. McGowan said he suffered some scrapes and had a bump on his head after being punched by Bowen. He said Bowen reported he had not been injured in the incident, except for the irritation caused by the spray.

eric.blaisdell @timesargus.com

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