In a case focused on the defendant's anger, a federal judge this week sentenced a man who let his rage flare at the wrong repo men.
Internal Revenue Service agents on Nov. 8 intended to seize a dump truck owned by Walter M. Trizila III's Omaha employer.
Trizila thought the agents might be representatives of yet another creditor stopping by, his lawyer said. That had become routine at the company, whose name was not identified in court documents.
He hopped into a front-end loader and drove toward the IRS agents, stopping just short of striking one of them. Trizila then dumped a full load of dirt at their feet.
U.S. Magistrate Judge Thomas D. Thalken on Thursday sentenced Trizila, 45, to three years of probation. He had pleaded guilty to assaulting, resisting or impeding a federal officer, a misdemeanor.
For the first three months of probation, federal authorities will electronically monitor Trizila. He will be required to perform 60 hours of community service and attend an anger management class.
Trizila had faced up to a year in prison and a $100,000 fine.
His attorney, Deborah D. Cunningham, told Thalken that it was important to consider that no one had been injured.
“Really, it was a circumstance where my client lost his temper. He yelled at this agent, and he acted immaturely,” Cunningham said. “He let it get beyond him.”
Trizila declined to speak at the sentencing. He apologized in a court document.
“I am sorry this happened (and) I did not intend to have the officer get worried.”