San Diego

Resisting Arrest Charge Dropped for Vista Man in Aggressive Arrest

Gerardo Martinez, Jr. and his father were arrested on Monday, May 7 after deputies were called to a domestic violence incident

A Vista man whose arrest alongside his father sparked outrage in the community will face trial on charges of domestic violence and false imprisonment. 

Gerardo Martinez, Jr. and his father were arrested on Monday, May 7, after deputies were called to a domestic violence incident. 

Judge Sim von Kalinowski ordered Martinez bound over for trial Tuesday on charges of domestic violence and false imprisonment.

He also lowered the bail to $50,000. 

A neighbor captured the arrest on video and posted to Facebook.

In the 22-second video, two deputies walked a handcuffed Gerardo Martinez Sr. down a walkway and pushed him head first into a wooden fence.

While deputies were walking Martinez Sr., two other deputies were attempting to take his son into custody on the ground.

One of the deputies was seen striking Martinez Jr. in the back of the head as he lay face down on the concrete.

Deputies were heard telling him to "stop fighting."

Martinez Sr. was charged with obstructing a public officer and bailed out days later. The charge was dropped. 

The younger Martinez was initially booked on false imprisonment, domestic violence, assault and resisting arrest charges. The resisting arrest charge has been dropped.

The day after the arrest, the sheriff's department said the deputies were responding to a call involving a domestic violence victim who was being held against her will.

"After initial review by command staff, two deputies were placed on paid administrative assignment pending an internal investigation. As we continue to gather and evaluate the facts of this case, the internal review might change in scope," the statement said.

The SDSO said it would be reviewing the deputies’ body-worn camera footage as part of its investigation.

"The family here is very hurt," defense attorney Francisco Aldona said. "They're Americans. They want justice. They want not only to teach the police they can't do that to them, to their family but to all citizens of Vista. 

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