Man files $20M lawsuit against San Diego County Sheriff's Depart - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Man files $20M lawsuit against San Diego County Sheriff's Department

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - A Riverside man filed a $20 million lawsuit against the San Diego County Sheriff's Department Wednesday of last week after his attorney claimed that he was beaten unconscious by a sheriff’s deputy.  

The lawsuit claims that on July 12 at Harrah's Southern California Resort Hotel, Jovan Jimenez got into an altercation with another guest at the hotel and San Diego County Sheriff's deputies responded.

Attorney Jerry Steering says that surveillance video from the hotel allegedly shows San Diego County Sheriff's Deputy Jeffrey Cruz hitting Jimenez while handcuffed with a flashlight.

"They know they can kill somebody. If it was a civilian that did that to a policeman, they would be charged with attempted murder on a policeman. We all know this," said Steering.

Sheriff’s deputies arrived at the hotel to break up the disagreement and decided to arrest Jimenez for simple battery. The lawsuit claims that sheriff’s deputies placed Jimenez in handcuffs and began to escort him out of the hotel. While walking Jimenez down the hall, he made a rude comment to one of the deputies, prompting Deputy Cruz to grab Jimenez's throat.

"You can’t justify taking a handcuffed man and slamming him against the wall, slamming him on the floor and then hitting his head repeatedly with a cylindrical object," said Steering.

Jimenez was knocked unconscious during the incident and Steering says it left Jimenez with both rib and brain injuries.

Records show that Deputy Cruz is a veteran deputy with the department.

The sheriff's department declined to comment on this story and referred CBS News 8 to the San Diego County Council, who was unavailable for comment this weekend. 

San Diego County has until early next month to respond to the lawsuit. 

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