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News-Sentinel.com Your Town. Your Voice.
Opening Arguments


On March 20, DelRea Good was driving olone on a dark country road in Porter County when a police officer, who had clocked her at 54 mph in a 35 mph zone, tried to pull her over. She waved to the officer, slowed down, put on her hazard lights and proceeded to a well-lit Kohl's parking lot less than a mile down the road. A wise move, right? Woman driving alone at night, anything could happen. Wrong:

Patrolman William Marshall subsequently arrested Good for felony resisting arrest.

Porter County Sheriff's spokesman Sgt. Larry LaFlower supported Patrolman Marshall's decision, citing a state law that requires motorists to yield to emergency vehicles. Marshall was driving a fully marked car and used the lights and siren, Sgt. LaFlower said.

According to the police report, Good told Marshall that safety prompted her to not to pull over immediately. "I don't care who you are. I don't have to stop on a county road. I'm a single female," Marshall quoted her as saying. He described her as "highly agitated and uncooperative."

"Highly agitated and uncooperative." Well, I guess so. I've been stopped by cops a time or two, guess most everybody has. And it is a disturbing thing to go through, which different people react to in different ways.  But felony resisting arrest?

Or is it sexist to think a woman driving alone at night on a dark country road should be careful? Good is from Portage in Porter County, by the way, which has two years ago issued a warning about a possible impersonator who attempted to pull a woman over using flashing red and blue lights:

That woman did not stop, a choice that Portage police characterized as wise.

But even genuine police officers can occasionally pose a threat, as the many high-profile instances in recent years of on-duty law enforcement officers committing rape have suggested.

As part of its warning two years ago, Portage police recommended that motorists concerned about their safety while being pulled over should call 911. Those unable to reach a dispatcher, police said, should acknowledge the officer by waving at them and then drive to a public location before stopping.

Good signaled to the cop, slowed down, put on her hazard lights, found a well-lit parking lot, and pulled in. In what universe is that resisting arrest, let alone a felony?