A 29-year-old former U.S. Marine who was arrested in Moscow in August after assaulting a police officer in a drunken stupor that he says he doesn’t remember was sentenced to nine years in prison Thursday.
Trevor Reed, a Texas native who had been awaiting trial from behind bars for almost a year, was convicted of endangering Russian police with violence, a charge he pleaded not guilty to.
“If I’m going to be given a prison sentence, I would rather stay in prison an honest man than walk free tomorrow a liar & a coward,” Reed said in his final statement to his judge before his sentencing.
Reed spent the summer of 2019 in Moscow visiting his girlfriend, according to a “Free Trevor Reed” website set up by his family.
On Aug. 15, Reed got drunk off vodka at a party with his girlfriend’s colleagues.
“There is also a possibility that he may have been given other substances without his knowledge, but we have no indication of this other than the fact that he has no memory of anything,” his family wrote. “He has no memory of the evening past drinking vodka and being asked to toast many times.”
After midnight, Reed, his girlfriend, Alina Tsybulni, and some other party-goers took a ride share home, but Reed was too nauseated and asked to get out of the car.
Reed then allegedly drunkenly stumbled into the middle of the street, at which point one of Tsybulni’s colleagues called the police.
“When the police arrived, they reported he was ‘in the condition of strong intoxication considering his shaky gait, rambling speech, and strong smell of alcohol. Reed waved his hands, shouted incoherent words, and behaved inadequately,‘” his family wrote.
Reed was then taken to the police station, instead of a medical facility as his family believes should have been the proper protocol.
But police say that Reed resisted arrest after the encounter and, once he was in the cop car, attacked the driver and hit another policeman, causing the car to swerve.
By the time Tsybulni returned that morning to pick Reed up, his charges had been upgraded to intentionally endangering the lives and health of the police officers.
Reed pleaded not guilty to the charges and his family, through the “Free Trevor Reed” website, has cited faulty evidence, including witness statements and surveillance footage that allegedly proves the car did not swerve.
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