Man in Videotaped Beating That Prompted Suspension of San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Deputies Posts Bail

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A 30-year-old man posted bail Sunday, days after being arrested and assaulted by at least 10 San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department deputies who were placed on paid leave after footage of the incident was captured by a local TV station.

Francis Pusok, 30, of Apple Valley, is seen in a booking photo provided by the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department.
Francis Pusok, 30, of Apple Valley, is seen in a booking photo provided by the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.

Francis Pusok was released from jail shortly before 7 p.m. Sunday after posting bail, county inmate records showed.

Deputies said they were attempting to serve a search warrant Thursday regarding an identity-theft investigation when Pusok fled on foot, and then on horseback.

Helicopter footage from KNBC captured the end of the chase, showing Pusok fall off his horse before sheriff’s deputies used a Taser and beat him, appearing to both kick and punch him repeatedly.

The video was “disturbing,” and 10 sheriff’s deputies involved were later placed on paid leave, officials said.

“I assure you that I am disturbed by this video,” Sheriff John McMahon said Friday. “It appears to be excessive to me based on what I saw in the video.”

A criminal investigation was being conducted by members of the Specialized Investigations Detail, according to the sheriff.

The FBI was also investigating if 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.

The identities of the 10 deputies were being withheld until officials could determine that multiple threats made to them were unwarranted, McMahon said Friday.

Pusok, of Apple Valley, was arrested and hospitalized with unknown injuries following the incident.

On Friday, officials said he was scheduled to be arraigned via video in Victorville Superior Court early Monday afternoon, according to the county District Attorney’s Office.

But inmate records showed no scheduled appearances as of Sunday night.

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