Suspect wanted for failure to appear at hearing for spousal abuse, failing to register as a sex offender
Kern County Sheriff's deputies had to use Taser to subdue a fugitive sex offender after a foot pursuit through several yards in Maricopa last week.
Deputies from the Taft substation had gone to Maricopa Friday morning to look for Branden Wescott 27, who was wanted on a warrant for spousal abuse, preventing or dissuading a witness from testifying and failure to register as a sex offender.
They found him in a backyard near Klipstein and Hazelton, but the suspect spotted them as well and started running, Sgt. Kevin George said.
The deputies chased the suspect through several backyards as they followed him to the area of Green and South Kern where they tried to take him into custody.
At that point, Wescott "went to his pockets," George said, and the deputies, unsure what was in the pocket deployed the Taser.
Wescott was treated at the scene then transported to Kern Medical for clearance before being booked into Kern County Jail on the charges in the warrant and additional charges of resisting arrest, providing false identification to officers, both misdemeanors, and felony counts of failing to register as a sex offender within five days of moving to a new jurisdiction and failing to report within five days after being released from custody.
According to the Kern County Superior Court website, Wescott failed to appear at a pretrial hearing on Oct. 6 for the charges in the warrant.
His total bail is $101,500.