Santa Ana

Video of Santa Ana Police Arresting Pursuit Suspect Prompts Use-of-Force Investigation

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A video of Santa Ana police officers arresting a pursuit suspect over the weekend has prompted a use-of-force investigation, the department announced Monday.

Shortly before 7:30 p.m. Sunday, Santa Ana police tried to stop a vehicle for various violations including no license plate and no seatbelts.

When the driver refused to pull over, a short pursuit began along city streets.

Pursuit speeds topped 90 mph and at one point, the driver drove the wrong way on the street, said Cpl. Anthony Bertagna, a spokesman for the Santa Ana Police Department.

The short pursuit ended on Kilson Drive where the driver and the passenger jumped out of the car and attempted to run away.

Police described the driver as "combative" and officers resorted to use of force, which included a Taser.


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In the video, officers can be heard telling the man -- later identified as 22-year-old Jesus Arturo Martinez -- to put his hands behind his back as he struggles with them. The officers are seen hitting the man in the head as he kicks his legs. 

Roxana Cedillo, who captured the incident on cellphone video, told NBC4 she hit record not knowing exactly what was happening in her driveway. 

"It got to the point where obviously someone had some anger issues and started abusing his power of the law and just started beating up the person on the floor," she said.

Santa Ana Police Department
Jesus Arturo Martinez, 22, (left) and Gabriel Becerra Mendoza, 26, were both arrested on suspicion of grand theft auto, possession of stolen property, felony evading police, controlled substance possession and replica hand gun possession, on Sunday, July 9, 2017.

Martinez and his passenger, Gabriel Becerra Mendoza, were described as documented gang members. They were both arrested on numerous charges including grand theft auto, felony evasion, drug possession and possession of a replica gun, authorities said. 

David Valentin, the acting police chief, is investigating the incident through internal affairs to see if excessive use of force was applied, Bertagna added. 

As of late Monday, the officers involved have not been placed on leave. 

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