Austin police officer arrested, accused of assaulting family member

Austin police officer Antwain Tarver. Nov. 7, 2016 (Williamson County Jail mugshot)
Austin police officer Antwain Tarver. Nov. 7, 2016 (Williamson County Jail mugshot)

AUSTIN (KXAN) — An Austin police officer has been charged with felony assault on a family member and interference with an emergency call.

Antwain Tarver, 40, was booked into and released from the Williamson County Jail on Monday following an incident on Saturday. The officer is accused of assaulting his wife five times within the last six months.

According to the arrest affidavit, on Oct. 21, an argument escalated when Tarver grabbed his wife by the throat with both of his hands. The victim told police he then shoved her into a wall, which resulted in physical pain and soreness after the incident. Court documents describe another scene in September, saying Tarver pinned his wife down and threatened to gag her and duct tape her mouth if she wasn’t quiet. In previous statements, his wife said she was afraid Tarver could kill her.

“Anytime you have a co-worker arrested, sure, it affects morale, you’re embarrassed, I know he’s embarrassed.” Austin Police Association President Ken Casaday says APD has a zero-tolerance policy when it comes to family violence. “We don’t condone that here at the police association either. What we do condone, is we make sure people are treated fairly and that they have a fair process,” said Casaday.

Austin police released the following statement, Monday night: “The victim contacted the Austin Police Department at which time the department immediately began an investigation into the allegations. The officer has been placed on restricted duty. APD has taken the proper steps to ensure the victims safety. We appreciate the efforts of the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office.”

Tarver is now on restrictive duty pending an investigation. He had his gun and badge taken away, and he must check in with the department to let police know where he is during work hours. Tarver has been with APD for more than 10 years and is listed as an Austin Police Region 3 District Representative.

Tarver is scheduled to appear at a bond conditions hearing Wednesday morning. He was also set for a hearing on a protective order filed by his wife; however the county attorney’s office says they decided not to go through with the hearing since a judge automatically signed a 60-day emergency protective order after Tarver’s arrest.

KXAN interviewed the officer in April. Tarver warned teens of the dangers of alcohol on prom night.

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