A Pasco County, Florida, deputy’s body cam captured the arrest of a shoplifter over the weekend. The bloody encounter has left some to question the officer’s tactics, but the sheriff stands behind his deputy and says people shouldn’t be so quick to pass judgement without first viewing the entire video, which can be see below.
Employees from a department store in Wesley Chapel called the police when they noticed Tiffany Tebo, 29, was attempting to take merchandise that she did not pay for. A loss prevention officer and a sheriff’s deputy confronted the woman – stolen merchandise in hand – outside of the store. Tebo, who is no stranger to law enforcement or shoplifting charges, immediately began to cry, beg and plead with the officer when she realized she had been busted.
The deputy, however, doesn’t cave and attempts to place Tebo in custody. Tebo resists and becomes involved in a struggle with the officer, during the course of which she is pushed up against a concrete pillar and begins to bleed from a cut on her head.
Still, Tebo resists and refuses to comply with the officer’s demands, all the while begging to just return the stolen merchandise and be on her way. Eventually, Tebo, who already has a lengthy criminal history for drugs, shoplifting and domestic violence, was apprehended.
The body cam footage has since garnered some attention, and even threats, according to Pasco County Sheriff Chris Nocco.
Leslie Sammis, a Tampa attorney, told reporters the deputy took it too far when he left Tebo bloodied.
“It doesn’t really appear he knows exactly what he wants her to do,” Sammis said. “He’s saying, ‘Lay down, put your hands behind your back.’ He’s just giving her instruction after instruction and not giving her a chance to comply with any of the things he wants her to do. So if the sheriff’s office is saying this is an example of how they’re supposed to do things, that’s a problem.”
But Nocco argues that the deputy handled the situation appropriately and the injuries Tebo received were the result of her own actions and had she not stolen the merchandise in the first place, the encounter never would have occurred.
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