Man Beaten by Deputies Following Horse Pursuit; S.B. Sheriff Orders Investigation

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

The San Bernardino sheriff says he’s looking into a videotaped incident in which deputies are seen kicking and hitting a man who led them on a chase in an unincorporated area of Apple Valley Thursday.

A man led police on a horse pursuit in an unincorporated area of Apple Valley on Thursday. (Credit: jgkix)

A man led police on a horse pursuit in an unincorporated area of Apple Valley on Thursday. (Credit: jgkix)

In video captured by cameras aboard a helicopter for KNBC, deputies gather around the man after he falls from the horse he was riding, use a stun gun on him and then repeatedly kick and hit him.

“The video surrounding this arrest is disturbing and I have ordered an internal investigation be conducted immediately,” Sheriff John McMahon said in a statement.

The man was later identified as Francis Pusok, 30, of Apple Valley, in a news release from the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.

The Thursday afternoon incident began when deputies tried to serve a search warrant in an identity theft investigation, according to the Sheriff’s Department.

Pusok fled from deputies in a car, then on foot, deputies said. He then allegedly stole a horse before being arrested in steep, rugged terrain by deputies who had been dropped in by helicopter, according to the news release.

Pusok was later hospitalized with unknown injuries, the news release stated.

A deputy was injured when the horse Pusok had been riding kicked him, the Sheriff’s Department said. Two others were treated for dehydration.

The incident comes amid heightened scrutiny of police use of force after the 2014 deaths of Eric Garner in New York and Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, and the recent shooting of Walter Scott in South Carolina.