EVANSTON — A 28-year-old Evanston man is facing multiple charges after an incident that resulted in injury to an Evanston police officer. Cody Mallett was arrested on Jan. 18 and charged with several crimes — felony interference with a peace officer, aggravated assault and battery for attempting to cause bodily injury with a deadly weapon, misdemeanor interference with a peace officer, domestic battery and domestic assault — after he allegedly attacked Sgt. Chad Liechty while Liechty was responding to a domestic dispute call.
According to police reports, Liechty and Evanston Police Department Officer Alex Heide responded to a call of a domestic dispute late on the evening of Monday, Jan. 18. The two were joined by Officer Brandon Nelson. At the residence, officers spoke to Mallett’s wife, who reported that Cody Mallett was extremely intoxicated and had been threatening her. Officers were unable to speak with Mallett himself, as he reportedly had locked himself in an upstairs bedroom and refused to come out.
Mallett’s wife reportedly told officers he had been drinking all day and was extremely upset about the death of a friend the previous day. Another friend who was at the couple’s home with them said Mallett had become increasingly intoxicated and belligerent as the evening progressed, to the point where the friend had wrestled with Mallett in the couple’s kitchen to prevent Mallett from getting a knife to threaten his wife.
At one point, Mallett allegedly yelled from the bedroom that he would “pop a cop,” leading officers to ask his wife if there were firearms in the residence. She told them there were not.
As officers Heide and Nelson spoke with Mallett’s wife on the front step of the residence, Sgt. Liechty reportedly continued to call upstairs and ask Mallett to come out of the bedroom to speak with him. According to the incident report, Mallett exited the bedroom a couple of times, while continuing to yell at his wife, but kept returning to the room. He reportedly appeared intoxicated and was slurring his words at times.
While Liechty continued to try to speak with him, Mallett allegedly came out of the bedroom and began to move aggressively toward Liechty, who ordered him to stop.
Mallett reportedly ignored those commands and continued toward Liechty, allegedly pulling a kitchen steak knife from behind his back while doing so. Liechty attempted to deploy his taser to stop Mallett; however, that did not work. Mallett then allegedly lunged at Liechty and attempted to stab him in the chest — an effort that was thwarted by Liechty’s protective bulletproof vest.
Liechty then attempted to disarm Mallett, according to the report, and officers Heide and Nelson came in to assist after hearing the commotion. The three officers were able to restrain and disarm Mallett, who allegedly continued to fight and resist as they attempted to place him into a patrol vehicle. Mallett was eventually subdued and able to be secured in a vehicle, at which point Liechty told the other officers Mallett had attempted to stab him and said he believed his leg had been injured during the scuffle.
Both Mallett and Liechty went to Evanston Regional Hospital for assessment. Mallett reportedly had a small cut on his finger that appeared to be from the knife and an abrasion to his ear but was medically cleared and transported to the Uinta County Jail.
Liechty sustained no injuries from the alleged stabbing attempt; however, an X-ray revealed a fractured fibula sustained during the attack and subsequent altercation.
The charges against Mallett carry penalties of up to 10 years imprisonment, a $10,000 fine or both for each of the felony charges of interference with a peace officer and aggravated assault and battery; and one year of imprisonment, a $1,000 fine or both for each count of misdemeanor interference with a peace officer, domestic battery and domestic assault. The maximum penalty would be a total of 23 years in prison, a $23,000 fine or both.
Mallett’s preliminary hearing in Circuit Court is scheduled for 9 a.m. on Feb. 4. Public defender E. Dean Stout has been appointed to the case.