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Video: 'Disturbing' Footage Shows Deputies Beating A Horse Thief

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"Disturbing" video shot by a news chopper shows San Bernardino County Sheriff's Deputies beating a man after he had already fallen off a horse and appeared to surrender.

Deputies chased the man on a stolen horse through the Deep Creek area of Apple Valley before 3 p.m. on Thursday afternoon. As seen in the video taken by NBC 4's news helicopter, beginning around the 0:45 second mark a deputy is able to knock the man off the horse using a Taser and is joined by another deputy in taking down the suspect. Although he visibly spreads his arms and then puts his hands behind his back, appearing to surrender, the deputies begin kicking and punching the man as he is down on the ground.

The number of deputies who arrive grows up to 13 and others join in on beating the man. By NBC 4's tally, the number of hits dealt totals 17 kicks, 37 punches, and 4 blows with a baton. He was apparently hit thirteen times in the head.

"The video surrounding this arrest is disturbing and I have ordered an internal investigation be conducted immediately," said San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon in a statement.

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According to officials, deputies first encounter the man just after noon while serving a search warrant. The man drove off in a car, and later abandoned it and took off on the horse.