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2 Vista Men Arrested by Deputies to Speak Publicly

Two men arrested by San Diego County sheriff’s deputies in Vista last week plan to speak publicly Monday about their arrest. 

Gerardo Martinez, Sr., 50, and Gerardo Martinez, Jr., 23, say they were compliant during their arrest but were beaten by deputies.

The San Diego County Sheriff’s Department has launched a deputy conduct investigation after it was made aware of the incident.

The arrest was captured on video and posted to Facebook.

In the 22-second video, two deputies walked an apparently handcuffed man down a walkway and pushed him head first into a wooden fence.

“When I see the video, I can’t believe it,“ the elder Martinez said. “I can’t believe that happened to me. I always try to stay out of troubles.”

Meanwhile, two other deputies were attempting to take another man into custody on the ground. One of the deputies was seen striking the man in the back of the head as he lay face down on the concrete. Deputies were heard telling the man to “stop fighting.”

The video was taken by a neighbor who wished to remain anonymous.

Martinez Jr. was booked on false imprisonment, domestic violence, assault, and resisting arrest charges. His dad was charged with obstructing a public officer and has since bailed out of jail.

“We really want to not only fight for justice for my father and my brother but we want to make sure this doesn’t happen to any other family,” said Carina Martinez, the eldest daughter in the family.

She was disgusted when she saw the video.

“I never thought I would be directly affected in this manner,” Martinez said. “No one should have to see any images like that.” 

An SDSO statement released on May 8 said the deputies were responding to a call involving a domestic violence victim who was being held against her will.

“After initial review by command staff, two deputies were placed on paid administrative assignment pending an internal investigation. As we continue to gather and evaluate the facts of this case, the internal review might change in scope,” the statement said.

The SDSO said it would be reviewing the deputies’ body-worn camera footage as part of its investigation.

Source: NBC San Diego

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