Ten San Bernardino sheriff’s deputies were placed on paid administrative leave Friday following the beating of a pursuit suspect that was captured on video.
The deputies can be seen in the helicopter video captured by KNBC surrounding 30-year-old Francis Pusok, who fell from a horse he allegedly stole while trying to flee from authorities Thursday afternoon.
They then could be seen on the video using a Taser on him before repeatedly kicking and hitting him.
“I assure you that I am disturbed by this video,” San Bernardino County Sheriff McMahon said during an early afternoon news conference on Friday, adding that, “It appears to be excessive to me based on what I saw in the video.”
He stated that the department had identified 10 deputies “involved in the use of force during the arrest.”
However, because the department received multiple threatening phone calls, emails and posts on social media, the county Sheriff’s Department would only release the names of the deputies if the threats were found to be unwarranted, McMahon said.
A criminal investigation was being conducted by members of the Specialized Investigations Details, according to the Sheriff.
In addition, the FBI was also investigating to determine whether Pusok’s civil rights had been violated, bureau spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said in an emailed statement.
“The results of the review will be forwarded to the United States Attorney’s Office in the Central District of California, and the Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, in Washington, D.C., to determine whether further investigation and/or prosecution is warranted,” she wrote.
Meanwhile, Pusok, who was arrested after the incident, remained hospitalized with unknown injuries, a Friday morning news release from the San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department stated.
He was scheduled to be arraigned via video in Victorville Superior Court early Monday afternoon, according to the county District Attorney’s Office.