Francis Pusok

Booking photo for Francis Jared Pusok (Courtesy photo)

By Joe Nelson, The Sun
Posted: 04/16/15, 8:16 PM PDT |

The attorney for an Apple Valley man whose beating by San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies was captured on video by a news crew said Thursday he plans to file a civil rights lawsuit in federal court early next week.

Victorville attorney Jim Terrell said the lawsuit will name as defendants all 10 deputies, including a sergeant and a detective, involved in the April 9 beating of Francis Pusok, 30, along with Sheriff John McMahon.

The lawsuit, which Terrell said he expects to file Monday or Tuesday, will allege violations of both state and federal law, including battery, intentional affliction of emotional distress, and excessive force under the color of authority, among other allegations.

While some of the deputies seen in the KNBC news video do not actually appear to strike or kick Pusok, they had a duty to protect him once he was no longer a threat, Terrell said.

“There’s a failure to protect, and that’s a civil rights action,” Terrell said. “When the other officers saw the beating and didn’t do anything about it, they broke the law.”

Sheriff’s spokeswoman Jodi Miller declined to comment Thursday. It is department policy not to comment on ongoing investigations and pending or imminent litigation.

Pusok led deputies on a nearly three-hour pursuit in Apple Valley on April 9 after deputies attempted to serve a search warrant at a High Desert home. Pusok stole a horse from the Deep Creek Hot Springs area and fled from pursuing deputies on horseback.

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