SAN FRANCISCO (KRON) — A San Francisco County Sheriff’s Deputy is facing serious charges for allegedly assaulting a patient in the waiting room at S.F. General Hospital and then lying about it.
District Attorney George Gascón says 33-year old deputy Michael R. Lewelling is charged with four felonies and a misdemeanor related to the incident that happened on November 3rd of this year.
Records show Deputy Lewelling filed an official police report saying the victim had assaulted him with a wooden cane. The victim in the case was arrested and charged with a felony and a misdemeanor.
Gascón says the surveillance tape “depict(s) the victim hunched over in a chair sleeping in the Emergency Room’s waiting area, awaiting a doctor’s appointment later that day. Deputy Lewelling approaches the victim as he is starting to wake up. He subsequently appears to engage in a conversation with the victim, at which point the victim slowly stands up, using a cane for assistance. Once up, he attempts to take a step towards the exit. While the victim is attempting to walk away, the defendant grabs the back of his collar, pulling him back into the seat and knocking his cane away. The victim never raised his cane in a threatening manner. A few seconds later, he appears to grab the victim’s throat and begins to choke him. The battery continued, and the victim was then placed under arrest.”
Prosecutors say after looking at the tape, they issued an arrest warrant for Deputy Lewelling for perjury, filing a false police report, filing a false instrument and assault under the color of authority. He also faces a misdemeanor count of battery. Bail is set at $138,000.
“The fact that a Sheriff’s Deputy allegedly battered a patient at San Francisco General Hospital is unnerving,” Gascón said in a written statement. “What’s worse is that he’s also alleged to have perjured himself on a police report, unforgivable conduct that led to the arrest of the innocent victim.”
Lewelling was arrested Friday and was in the process of posting bail Friday evening. A court date has not yet been set.
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