San Bernardino County, Calif., prosecutors have charged three deputies with assault by a peace officer in connection with the videotaped beating of a man who led them on a pursuit on horseback in the high desert in April, Dist. Atty. Mike Ramos said Tuesday, reports the Los Angeles Times.
The April 9 beating of Francis Jared Pusok led Sheriff John McMahon to put 10 deputies on administrative leave, saying the use of force appeared to be excessive.
The FBI also launched a civil rights investigation into the incident, which was caught on video by a TV news helicopter. The federal investigation is continuing and no charges have been filed, FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said Tuesday morning.
In the recording by KNBC-TV Channel 4, Pusok appeared to be surrendering when one deputy kicked him in the groin area and another punched him in the head. Both deputies continued to kick and punch him and were later joined by additional deputies who pummeled him for about a minute before placing him in handcuffs.
Pusok was treated at a hospital for cuts and bruises.