Video of deputy punching man during arrest sparks investigation in Burke County

Deputy altercation caught on camera

MORGANTON, N.C. (WBTV) - Burke County Sheriff Steve Whisenant says an investigation is underway into how a deputy sheriff handled an arrest on Sunday near Morganton.

The deputy was in a neighborhood along Amherst road on an unrelated call when he spotted a man he thought was a probation violator.

Homer Cook admits he was in violation and thought there might be warrants out for him. There were none at that time, but Cook says once he saw the deputy, he stopped his car, jumped out, and started running. The deputy went after him.

Surveillance video shows Cook tripping and the officer taking him down as he tried to get up. At that point, the video shows the officer hitting Cook several times. The video was shot by a camera more than 100 feet away.

Burke Deputies do not have body cameras so there is no up-close video or audio of what happened.

Cook, who has a previous criminal history, was charged with resisting a public officer and possession of drug paraphernalia. Cook says he worked out the issues with his probation officer and no charges were filed for that.

The deputy involved, according to the sheriff, did file an internal use-of-force report and officials are investigating.

Cook admits he should not have run from the deputy, but also said he believes the deputy went too far.

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