Man used child as shield, filing alleges

A Clifton man allegedly held a 4-year-old child to shield himself from Grand Junction police officers as they approached the man with weapons drawn during a disturbance call on Monday, according to a court summons.

Michael Thomas Arial, 30, was issued a summons on suspicion of reckless child abuse and third-degree assault after officers were called to Affordable Inns, 721 Horizon Drive, around 2:15 a.m. on a report of a fight.

Police spokeswoman Kate Porras said officers were told before approaching Arial that someone involved may have had a gun. Several officers who tried contacting Arial had guns and Tasers drawn, Porras said.

The summons issued in the case said Arial allegedly grabbed his fiancee’s 4-year-old son and “used him as a shield against myself and other officers.”

After multiple commands, the child was released and Arial was handcuffed, the summons said. Follow-up investigation showed Arial had allegedly assaulted a woman at the motel.

An officer wrote in the summons Arial had bloodshot, watery eyes, a strong alcohol odor and appeared “highly intoxicated.”


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