Last Thursday, May 26, an individual who was shopping at Albertson's in the East Gate Shopping Center was able to provide important assistance to a Missoula County Sheriff's Detective in the furtherance of his duty. 

Public Information Officer Brenda Bassett said Detective Paul Brinka was following up on a tip on a suspect who had a warrant out for his arrest.

"Detective Brinka approached the suspect inside the store, and immediately the suspect started to struggle while resisting arrest, and the two fell to the ground and continued struggling together for several minutes," Bassett said. "Several people were standing in the aisle watching the struggle, when Detective Brinka summoned some help, and one individual came over and secured the suspect's legs so that Brinka was able to successfully make that arrest with the help of the civilian."

Bassett added a little known law enforcement fact.

"If an officer does request the assistance of a civilian, they are required to come and help by statute," she said.

The suspect was identified as 40 year-old Michael Peterson, and he was seen in Missoula Justice Court on Friday, May 27.

Peterson was charged with two felony counts of failure to appear, felony escape and misdemeanor resisting arrest. His bail was set at $10,000.