AUSTIN (KXAN) — A park ranger who was trying to disperse a crowd on a sunny Thursday at Lake Austin says he was pushed into the water. Police say a 25-year-old has been arrested in the case.
A video shared on social media appears to shows the ranger speaking to the crowd and asking them to keep six feet of distance between them to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. The video then shows a man run up and push him, sending both men into the water. The suspect then climbs out of the lake and runs off.
That matches a description of the incident described in an arrest affidavit for Brandon James Hicks, who faces a charge of attempted assault on a public servant.
According to the arrested affidavit, police responded to the call around 4:54 p.m. Thursday and were sent to Commons Ford Park. The ranger reported he had been trying to disperse a crowd of people who were unlawfully smoking and drinking in the park, police say.
“Brandon’s intentional and reckless action could have caused the Ranger to strike his head on the dock as he was falling, and render himself unconscious in at least 3 feet of water where he could have drowned to death,” the affidavit said.
The person who took the cell phone video of the incident said they were glad the person got in trouble for pushing the park ranger.
“The park ranger was actually being really sweet and understanding before,” they said.