Man accused of hindering firefighters

Ricardo Gomes Jr.

WOODSTOCK – A town resident accused of scuffling with police during a fire at his residence is facing charges related to the incident.

The defendant, Ricardo James Gomes Jr., 25, spit on a Woodstock police officer and interfered with firefighters as they tried to extinguish a fire at his apartment on Nov. 18, authorities say.

Woodstock Police Chief Eric Reiley said the fire began at Gomes’ apartment at 1284 Ox Road.

“I believe he was trying to cook with a grill, and it got away from him,” Reiley said.

Court documents filed by police describe Gomes’ eyes as bloodshot, his speech slurred and an alcoholic odor on his breath when they arrived at the scene.

Someone asked an officer to enter the apartment because Gomes was hindering the firefighters as they tried to quell the fire, court records say.

Police arrested Gomes after finding a grinding device with what court records describe as a “green leafy substance.” Gomes fought back after he was placed in a police cruiser, head butting it and kicking its side, the court records say. Police also accuse him of spitting in an officer’s face before he was put on the ground and placed in the cruiser.

Gomes is charged with assault on a law enforcement officer; possession of marijuana; misdemeanor vandalism; tampering with firefighting equipment; and public swearing and intoxication.

He has remained in the Rappahannock-Shenandoah-Warren Regional Jail since the day of his arrest.

“The fire was extinguished without any major damage,” Reiley said.

Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or jbeck@nvdaily.com.