Darnell Curry, 27, of Buffalo, NY, pleaded guilty before U.S. Magistrate Judge H. Kenneth Schroeder to assaulting, resisting, or impeding a federal officer. The charge carries a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a $100,000 fine.
On February 19, 2020, while at the Starbucks inside the Veterans Affairs Medical Center on Bailey Avenue in Buffalo, the defendant engaged in a verbal argument with a female friend employed at Starbucks.
Three Department of Veterans Affairs Police officers approached Curry in response to a complaint about the verbal argument. When the defendant did not hear or acknowledge verbal commands, an officer touched Curry’s shoulder. The defendant turned and a scuffle with the officers ensued.
During the scuffle, Curry pulled an officer by the vest and into his body. In the process, the defendant struck the officer in the head, leaving a mark on his cheek below his left eye. Physical resistance by the defendant resulted in the officers taking Curry to the ground, handcuffing, and detaining him.
The plea is the result of an investigation by the VA Office of Inspector General, Criminal Investigations Division, under the direction of Special Agent-in-Charge Christopher Algieri, and the VA Medical Center Police, under the direction of Chief Michael Steinmetz.
Sentencing is scheduled for September 16, 2020, before Judge Schroeder.