A Sacramento County, California Sheriff’s Deputy has been suspended (with pay) pending an investigation into an incident in which he was caught on film beating a man he had pinned to the ground with his flashlight.
“I think [the deputy] should get fired,” said Michael White, who filmed the incident. “I think he should go to jail. I don’t think administrative leave is enough.”
White says that before he began filming, “The cop was walking around him, and he Tased him several times, and you could see the guy’s body convulse about three or four times. And he’s not yelling or anything. He was not trying to get away.”
The video shows an officer pinning down John Madison Reyes’ head as he beats the man with his flashlight while ordering the man to turn over. “I’m trying to,” Reyes told the officer, who was still using his knee to pin down Reyes’ head. “I’ll turn over if you let me up.”
Police, however, say that the victim of the flashlight beating was resisting arrest, which forced the unnamed officer to use pepper spray and his stun gun multiple times.
“Let’s face it, had the subject complied with the officer’s directives from the initial contact and beyond, we wouldn’t be sitting here talking about this today,” said Sacramento County Undersheriff Jaime Lewis, though he admitted there was some concern over the video:
“There are portions of that video that clearly have caused me concern. And that is exactly what has caused the department to initiate an investigation, so we can get to the bottom of it.”
The attack left Reyes with what appears to be a deep cut to his forehead and a black eye. He maintains that the officer made him unable to comply with the orders being shouted.
“How can I roll over when my body’s twitching with 100,000 volts going through it?” Reyes said. He says he initially approached the deputy because the patrol vehicle was blocking the intersection:
I asked him kindly to move the car. He glared at me and stared at me. And then, I said an expletive, ‘You need to move the car because I can’t get through.’
He says that after he confronted the deputy about the car, the officer began to question him about being on probation for drug possession and carrying a concealed weapon.
Reyes was booked into jail and released, charged only with resisting arrest.
Watch a report on the attack below: