You might remember the California man who received a $650,000 settlement after he was beaten by nearly a dozen sheriff’s deputies recently.
The man had tried to flee officers, even taking to horseback, after he says it was made clear to him that the officers were intent upon brutalizing him.
The criminal complaint was just filed in a San Bernardino County court. It charges Francis Pusok with 14 felonies, including grand theft of livestock, animal cruelty, evading a police officer, as well as reckless driving.
But the funny thing is (well, really, it’s not funny), that several of these charges predated the April 9 brutality incident. The police just decided to look for anything and everything that they could possibly charge Pusok with and throw the proverbial book at him.
A copy of the complaint was published online by the Los Angeles Times. Read the full text below (story continues after PDF).
The complaint alleges that Pusok, 30, was under the influence of marijuana and amphetamines at the time of the incident. This, the deputies seem to believe, warranted in some way their treatment of him..
“We are disappointed, but yet sadly not surprised,” James Terrell and Sharon Brunner, Pusok’s attorneys, said to the Times.
The have described these charges as “retaliatory, unjust, unfair and inequitable.”
The the video of Pusok’s beating and arrest went viral after they surfaced on YouTube and social media.
Watch the footage in the video below, if you haven’t seen it already…
The incident began after Pusok drove off when officers arrived at a residence to serve a search warrant. That warrant was part of an identity-theft investigation. But Pusok noted that there was nothing in the warrant or the law that required him to remain at the residence during the serving of that warrant.
He says he fled after it became clear to him that officers were intent upon brutalizing him.
After police followed him, his beliefs about their intentions seemed confirmed. Pusok eventually ditched the vehicle and took to the hills, even riding a horse at one point, falling off and then being severely beaten.
Pusok is repeatedly punched and stomped, tasered while deputies took turns on him for at least two minutes straight.
The FBI is now looking into this case, but ten deputies have been “placed on administrative leave” while an investigation by the Sheriff’s department is underway.
Pusok and his lawyers claim the new charges are the result of the $650,000 settlement for this beating, even while part of the agreement said that it settled all potential legal claims related and stemming from the incident.
(Article by M. David and S. Wooten)