UPDATE: Fort Myers man said deputies used excessive force
Deputy brutalityPhoto: Video by fox4now.com
NAPLES, Fla.- Do Collier County deputies treat minorities differently than whites? That's what one group is saying and they're voicing their concerns for anyone to hear. One voice is coming from a Fort Myers man who claims deputies in Collier County used excessive force on him.
Mateo Falconi headed to the Collier County Courthouse Friday morning. He argues Collier County deputies treated him unfairly.
"It's pretty dramatizing what happened. Definitely don't want it to happen again. I don't want other people to go through same thing," said Falconi.
Members of LULAC, League of United Latin American Citizens, is one of the largest Latino civil rights and advocacy groups in the United States. Members joined Falconi on Friday with signs like one saying "Stop police brutality."
"I think many members of Latino community and African American community are totally afraid of police and with good reason," said Larry Aguilar, LULAC.
Falconi claims deputies used excessive forced after he surrendered following a traffic stop in October. The dash cam video shows deputies punching and tasering the 22-year-old. Before Falconi stopped his motorcycle he led deputies on a high speed chase. Deputies say in the video he reached speeds as high as 110mph.
When we aired this story last month, some viewers sided with Falconi, but others say what did he expect? Falconi fled from deputies and led them on a wild chase. Falconi is now facing several criminal charges including drug possession.
"Once they step outside the law and violate people's rights, hurt people physically, they are taking the law into their own hands, they're the ones dictating punishment at their own discretion," said Falconi.
Fox reached out to the sheriff's office on Friday to get a response regarding Friday's demonstration. A spokesperson tells me Falconi has not filed a formal complaint with the sheriff's office. However, Sheriff Ramobosk has initiated an investigation and is still looking into this incident.