Tough takedown by police caught on camera in Sweetwater

Police seen in video punching brother of suspect for whom they'd been searching

SWEETWATER, Fla. – A tough takedown by police was caught on camera Wednesday morning in Sweetwater.

In the video, Sweetwater police officers are seen punching the brother of a suspect for whom they were searching.

The suspect's mother and brother spoke to Local 10 News on Thursday about the incident.

They shared their home surveillance video with Local 10 News reporter Christian De La Rosa and even showed him their bruises.

The video shows one Sweetwater police officer throwing punches and pushing a woman back, while another officer is seen placing a man in a choke hold.

A second man is cuffed on the ground.

"Can you see in the video they punched me and throw me away?" Ana Schaublin asked. 

Schaublin showed De La Rosa the bruises she claims she suffered from police.

"They are animals," she said. 

Sweetwater police told Local 10 News they arrived at the home on Southwest 20th Terrace looking for a driver who hit an officer and who later bailed along with two other men.

The driver, identified as James Castro, is a registered sex offender and lives at the home with his family.

The man seen punched and violently restrained by officers is Castro's brother, who claims he was not in the vehicle.

"I haven't seen my brother since Dec. 26," he said. 

The Sweetwater police chief said the two men arrested at the home were believed to be in the vehicle with the suspect and were charged with resisting officers.

The third suspect is still at large and his family said they have not seen him. They are demanding the officers involved in the incident be investigated for abuse of force.

About the Author:

Christian De La Rosa joined Local 10 News in April 2017 after spending time as a reporter and anchor in Atlanta, San Diego, Orlando and Panama City Beach.