FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — A South Florida deputy accused of using a Taser stun gun on a man and taking his cell phone while the man was trying to video-record a family member’s arrest was booked Tuesday on misdemeanor charges.
Broward County Deputy Carlos Ferrufino, 34, turned himself in Tuesday morning at the county’s main jail, a sheriff’s office news release said. He faces two counts of misdemeanor battery, one count of tampering with evidence and one count of petit theft. He has also been suspended without pay.
“As law enforcement officers, our oath to uphold the law does not exempt us from following the law. There are consequences for breaking the law, even if it means bringing charges against one of our own,” Sheriff Gregory Tony said in a statement. “Everyone deserves to be treated with dignity and respect, and I expect the highest level of professionalism from all BSO personnel.”
According to internal affairs investigators, Ferrufino responded to a traffic stop as back-up in January 2021 and deployed his Taser on the adult male driver. Relatives of the driver heard some commotion and came outside their home. When one of the family members started filming the interaction with a mobile phone, investigators said Ferrufino swatted the device from the man’s hand and stunned him with the Taser.
The phone was collected on scene as evidence, but investigators said Ferrufino never submitted the man’s Apple iPhone7 into evidence.
Online court records didn’t immediately list a defense attorney for Ferrufino, and it wasn’t immediately clear whether he was represented by a local police union.