Woonsocket man sentenced but faces more charges for biting multiple officers

Anthony Zotti was sentenced Tuesday for biting a Davison County corrections officer while being held on charges for biting multiple officers in another county, in addition to violating probation for biting a federal officer.

Davison courthouse 2.JPG
In this Daily Republic file photo, the Davison County Courthouse in Mitchell is pictured. (Daily Republic file photo)

A Woonsocket man was sentenced Tuesday by a Davison County judge for biting a Davison County corrections officer, but he still faces charges out of Sanborn County for allegedly biting more officers the same day.

Anthony Zotti, 25, of Woonsocket, was sentenced in Davison County to two years in a penitentiary with credit for 66 days served.

Davison County court documents say on May 1, Zotti bit a corrections officer during an altercation inside the Davison County Jail. The bite broke the skin on the officer's thumb, and required the officer to seek medical treatment and receive a tetanus shot. Zotti had also ripped a pocket off the officer's uniform.

Zotti was booked in to the Davison County Jail on charges stemming from a Sanborn County pursuit earlier that day when he is alleged to have bitten multiple officers.

Sanborn County court documents allege that on May 1, Zotti was stopped for speeding after a Sanborn County Deputy observed him driving 80 mph in a 55 mph zone. When Zotti stopped, he provided a vehicle registration and an insurance card, but no driver's license.


After running Zotti's information through dispatch, the deputy discovered Zotti had a revoked license and a federal warrant stemming from an incident in which he bit a Rosebud Sioux Tribal Police officer in 2017.

When the deputy informed Zotti of the warrant, and moved to make the arrest, Zotti asked if he could drive his vehicle about a mile to his residence in Woonsocket to avoid having it towed. The officer agreed and followed Zotti into town.

The arrest affidavit alleges that Zotti drove past his residence, turned west onto Highway 34 and continued to increase his speed. Speeds of the pursuit reached over 100 mph and alleges Zotti "almost" hit several civilian motorists and several tractor trailer units while driving on the wrong side of the road. The pursuit ran through Stickney and Corsica and several intersections at high speeds.

Eventually, authorities successfully deployed spike strips, which blew all four tires on the vehicle, but he allegedly continued eluding.

When the pursuit had come to a stop, eight sheriffs and sheriff's deputies plus three Highway Patrol troopers worked to bring Zotti into custody.

The affidavit alleges Zotti bit one trooper, "tried biting several others and made numerous threats to the lives of law enforcement and their families." In transit, Zotti managed to unbuckle himself and bit another deputy on the elbow.

A preliminary breath test could not be conducted due to Zotti's "combative behavior," but the affidavit marks alcohol use in the altercation.

Zotti was charged in Sanborn County with aggravated eluding, assault on a law enforcement officer, reckless driving and more. His first court appearance on those charges is set for July 14.


Zotti's sentence in Davison County is to be served concurrently with his federal sentence for the 2017 biting incident.

A South Dakota native, Hunter joined Forum Communications Company as a reporter for the Mitchell (S.D.) Republic in June 2021 and now works as a digital reporter for Forum News Service, focusing on local news in Sioux Falls. He also writes regional news spanning across the Dakotas, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
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