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Man who was beaten by San Bernardino deputies arrested (again) on assault charge

In this frame from a video provided by KNBC-TV, San Bernardino County sheriff's deputies appear to beat and kick Francis Pusok in April 2015.

In this frame from a video provided by KNBC-TV, San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies appear to beat and kick Francis Pusok in April 2015.

(KNBC-TV / Associated Press)

The man whose beating by San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies following a horseback pursuit was captured by a TV news helicopter has been arrested on suspicion of assault, authorities said Wednesday.

Francis Pusok, 31, allegedly punched a man during a confrontation Tuesday outside a home in the 11000 block of Caribou Avenue in Apple Valley, according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.

The victim, whose identity was not released, had just evicted members of Pusok’s family who were squatting at the home, sheriff’s officials said. After Pusok was barred from entering the home to recover property, he allegedly struck the man in the nose, causing him to fall and injure his neck and back, sheriff’s officials said.

The victim identified Pusok in a photo lineup and deputies arrested him Wednesday in Apple Valley.

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Pusok shot to infamy on April 9 after he led police on a three-hour pursuit in Lucerne Valley on a motorcycle and a horse. He fell from the horse in rugged terrain and as a KNBC-TV helicopter hovered overhead, deputies kicked and punched him even after he appeared to have surrendered.

Pusok faces multiple charges from the April incident, including charges of evading a police officer, resisting arrest, stealing an animal, cruelty to an animal and being under the influence of drugs. He was also charged with three counts each of vehicle theft and receiving stolen property.

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Just more than a week after the televised horseback pursuit went viral, San Bernardino County agreed in a settlement deal to pay him $650,000. The settlement ended any potential claims Pusok could make against the county or Sheriff’s Department stemming from the beating.

Before the April incident, local law enforcement had arrested Pusok at least six times. He faced several counts of resisting arrest, and many charges were later dismissed or reduced.

On Wednesday, Pusok was booked on a charge of assault and is being held at the High Desert Detention Center in lieu of $50,000 bail. He’s scheduled to appear Friday in a Victorville courtroom.

For breaking news in California, follow @MattHjourno.

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