A Victoria police officer is under investigation after using a stun gun on a 76-year-old man after pulling him over Thursday for an expired inspection sticker.
Nathanial Robinson, a 23-year-old hired in 2012 after graduating from the police academy, was placed on administrative duty Friday while the Victoria Police Department determines whether Robinson violated the department's use of force policy, Victoria Police Chief J.J. Craig told the Victoria Advocate.
Police dashboard camera video published by Raw Story shows Robinson pulling over Pete Vasquez as the man made his way back to Adam's Auto Mart, a Victoria car dealership where he helps with mechanical work, according to the Advocate.
"Under Ground Kings" by Drake blares from the police cruiser's stereo throughout the incident.
The older man exits the vehicle and points to the dealer tags on the car, owned by the dealership, which would exempt the car from having an inspection. Craig confirmed this to the Advocate.
Robinson grabs Vasquez's arm, which the man pulls away, before the officer pushes Vasquez onto the hood of the police cruiser and the two fall out of frame.
Police said Robinson used his Taser twice on Vasquez while he was on the ground, the Advocate reported. Robinson is seen in the video holding a stun gun and yelling at Vasquez.
"He just acted like a pit bull, and that was it," Vasquez told the Advocate. "For a while, I thought he was going to pull his gun and shoot me."
Robinson placed Vasquez in handcuffs and put him in the back of the cruiser. After other officers arrived on scene, Vasquez was taken to a local medical center and remained in custody for two hours, according to the Advocate.
Craig said the footage "raises some concerns," the Advocate reports. Robinson could face a range of punishment from a letter of reprimand to suspension without pay or termination, Craig told the Advocate.
"Public trust is extremely important to us," Craig said. "Sometimes that means you have to take a real hard look at some of the actions that occur within the department."
Craig said he apologized to Vasquez, who said he had body aches following the incident.
District Attorney Stephen Tyler told the Advocate he had not seen the video but said possible charges could include official oppression, injury to elderly, aggravated assault and assault.
Larry Urich, who works as a sales manager at Adam's Auto Mart, told the Advocate that the officer should be fired from the force and prosecuted for assault.
"I told the officer, 'What in the hell are you doing?' This gentleman is 76 years old," Urich said. "The cop told me to stand back, but I didn't shut up. I told him he was a goddamned Nazi Stormtrooper."