San Francisco

Alameda County Sheriff’s Office Deputies Charged in Suspect Beating Surrender, Post Bail

Two videos captured the deputies beating a suspected car thief with batons over the course of 40 seconds

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San Francisco Public Defender's Office

The two Alameda County Sheriff's Office deputies accused of excessive force posted bail Wednesday after surrendering to police.

Deputies Luis Santamaria and Paul Wieber, who have been placed on administrative leave, are scheduled to be arraigned on Friday.

San Francisco's district attorney charged the deputies with felony assault on Tuesday, more than six months after they were seen on video striking a suspected car thief with batons in the Mission District.

The alleged assault came at the end of a high-speed pursuit involving a suspected car thief that stretched across the Bay Bridge in November.

DA George Gascón said the two Alameda County sheriff's deputies — 14-year veteran and training officer Santamaria and 3-year veteran Wieber, who was undergoing field training — were charged with assault under the color of authority, assault with a deadly weapon and battery with serious bodily injury.

Two separate videos captured Santamaria and Wieber beating the suspect with their batons over the course of 40 seconds, striking him at least 30 times, prosecutors said. 

Santamaria's attorney, Michael Rains, said the two deputies surrendered at the Hayward Police Department on Wednesday.

"It's tough. They're somber, they're sad," Rains said. "They're facing serious charges. But they know they have an obligation to face up to those charges and deal with them."

Wieber is being represented by attorney William Rapoport.

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