PHOENIX -- A Valley pastor is claiming border patrol agents beat him and stunned him with a Taser at a checkpoint, but he said he had done nothing wrong.
Steve Anderson, a preacher at Faithful Word Baptist Church in Tempe, said the incident happened Wednesday night at a checkpoint along I-8, far from the Mexican border.
Anderson said agents stopped him on his way back to the Valley from San Diego. The agents asked him where he was going and if he was a U.S. citizen. Anderson said he wasn't answering any of their questions and told them he wanted to go home.
The agents then told Anderson to pull over. He said he sat in his car for an hour before DPS arrived to tell him he was under arrest.
"He said, 'Our dog alerted us that you either have a human being or drugs in this trunk,'" Anderson said.
The officers then forced Anderson from his vehicle, he said.
"They told me, 'You're coming out of this car one way or the other,'" he said.
Then, Anderson said the agents broke the windows of his car, removed him from the car, and beat him.
"I'm sitting like this, crying, screaming for mercy," he said. "Next thing I know, an agent takes my head and shoves it into the broken glass on the side of the window ... I can feel the glass shoving into my scalp. Then, I'm thrown on the ground and they're still Tasing me throughout this."
Anderson insisted he did not have to submit to the search that he said led to officers breaking windows, firing Tasers and humiliating him.
A spokesman with Customs and Border Patrol confirmed that Anderson was asked to pull over for inspection after a search dog alerted agents to a scent from his vehicle.
The spokesman also said DPS took Anderson into custody after Anderson remained in the regular traffic lane for an hour. He added border patrol agents never use Tasers.
The border patrol is currently investigating the officers' actions, the spokesman said.
Tags: border patrol, border agents, steven anderson, pastor, beating, tazer, taser, dps, 4th amedmant, fourth amendmant
Location: Yuma, Arizona, United States (load item map)
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