Crime

Tasered UK student pleads not guilty

A man who survived a jump off a two-story building after being shocked twice by a police Taser has pleaded not guilty to drug, assault and other charges.

Stephen Eidson, seated in a wheelchair with a back brace and casts on his wrist and feet, was arraigned Wednesday in Fayette District Court.

Eidson, 23, is accused of fighting with police officers who tried to get him off a roof last month. Eidson, a senior in the University of Kentucky's computer science and electrical engineering program, is charged with alcohol intoxication, menacing, third-degree assault and three counts of possession of a controlled substance.

He suffered two broken vertebrae, breaks to both ankles and a wrist injury after landing behind the fourplex at 277 Lyndhurst Place, his attorney, Jim Deckard, said.

Eidson's next court date is scheduled for Oct. 12. Deckard asked Judge Julie Goodman to schedule the court date in two months to give Eidson time to recover.

"Stephen and his family are pleased that the court was able to accommodate a schedule to help Stephen's continuing recovery," Deckard said via e-mail after the arraignment.

Deckard described Eidson as "a great guy" with a "strong and caring family." Many friends and relatives have said much the same thing, posting support for Eidson on his Face book page and in comments on news stories.

"If character witnesses are called upon (in court), there will be a line out the door," Juliet Meredith said.

Meredith, 31, a friend of Eidson's older sister, said she has known Eidson since he was born and has never known him to be out of control or violent.

"This is just not something that should have ever happened to Stephen," she said. "It's not something anyone who knows him would expect."

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