Okaloosa County Commissioner Graham Fountain, immediate-past chairman, was injured last Saturday evening in Crestview while trying to assist a young woman who was being beaten by a male assailant.
Irby Franklin Jordan, of Dothan, Alabama faces multiple felony charges for the Jan. 12 incident.
According to an Okaloosa County press release, at around 3:30 p.m. on Alabama Street near the Richburg School, Fountain and his wife were returning home from a friend’s funeral. They observed a car blocking the road way, and observed Jordan beating the female victim around the head and neck while dragging her by the hair out of the car ultimately throwing her on the pavement.
Commissioner Fountain, being a retired law enforcement officer and his wife being a registered nurse dialed 911 and jumped out of the car and rendered assistance. Jordan was acting crazed and kept screaming for everyone to leave the scene because he was a “federal officer” according to the press release.
As Mrs. Fountain attempted to give aide to the victim and shield her and her mother from her assailant, Jordan attempted to swing at Mrs. Fountain. At that point, Commissioner Fountain got in front of Jordan and ordered him to back up and stand down. The Commissioner said Jordan then jumped up in Fountain’s face and said he was a member of the Central Intelligence Agency and he “would kill” the Commissioner.
Fountain advised Jordan he was a retired- certified law enforcement officer and a public official and he was not going to be allowed to commit any more acts of violence on the females. Before Fountain could take physical action or retrieve his concealed weapon, Jordan allegedly grabbed Fountain’s suit coat lapel and threw him over the rear bumper and to the pavement.
The sheer power of the throw made Fountain roll three times after hitting the pavement according to the release.
The commissioner received head, back, arm and shoulder injuries from the attack. He was laying on the roadway when Jordan approached Fountain and drew back his leg preparing to kick him in the head. The first Crestview Police unit arrived and engaged Jordan. The officer who arrived on scene deployed his Taser and subdued Jordon.
“I hate he got the jump on me before I could deal with him first,” Fountain said in a statement following the incident. “I guess I have to realize that time and age are not my friends. I’m definitely not a 25-year-old deputy sheriff anymore. I’m a man who believes in God’s providence; we were in the right place and time to defend the victim.”
Commissioner Fountain was taken to North Okaloosa Medical Center where he was treated and released the same evening. Jordan was also treated at the hospital for a possible heart attack
Jordan later called the office of Commissioner Fountain and attempted to threaten the county executive assistant. According to an affidavit supplied by the executive assistant, Jordan claimed he was a federal officer and the commissioner would be charged with assaulting the same if he did not drop charges against Jordan.
Other threats were made to the Crestview Police that if Fountain failed to “work this out” and drop charges, he would sue the commissioner for $5 million and arrest him for assault on a federal agent.
The Crestview Police Department and Okaloosa County Sheriff are handling the investigation. U.S. Marshals arrested Jordan in Alabama a week after the initial incident.
Fountain said he is glad he and his wife were able to intervene.
“Jordan, who we found out after the incident had been arrested for terrorism and battery on police officers in Dothan, Alabama, may have further injured or killed the girl (his step daughter) had we not been there,” he said. “He was crazy with rage and a high degree of strength for his age; I’m a big boy and he threw me across that asphalt like I was a rag doll.”
According to the Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office Jordan is now charged with multiple felonies, including extortion by threat, attempt to corrupt a public official by threat, impersonating a law enforcement officer and obstruction of justice.
“I’m pretty busted up, but I would do it again to help out. I can’t stand bullies or bad people who like to hurt others” Commissioner Fountain said.