The California cops appeared terrified of the man they say was driving drunk, spending more than two minutes hiding behind their patrol cars with their guns drawn, ordering him to crawl towards them on his hands and knees.
They made him lie flat on his stomach in the middle of the street with his arms and legs spread out before one cop fired some type of exploding projectile near his face.
It was only then they felt safe enough to pile on top of him and punch him repeatedly. One cop allowed a K9 to maul his leg.
A woman, meanwhile, stood on a sidewalk and recorded the interaction, suggesting to the cops at one point that maybe the man did not understand English. Santa Maria is 75 percent Hispanic, according to the U.S. Census.
The video was posted to Facebook Monday afternoon and has quickly gone viral.
"Because I said so," a female cop can be heard after ordering him down on his knees.
"Crawl, crawl, crawl," she says.
Santa Maria police said the video is just a "small portion of the big picture."
According to KEYT:
Santa Maria police said the man was driving around cars stopped for a stop sign at the corner of Boone and Western, merging into the opposite lane of traffic and not stopping at the sign. When a patrol officer caught up to the man's SUV, he noticed other infractions. The car continued to drive for several blocks before finally stopping on West Barrett.
“I think something to consider is that that video is just a small portion of the big picture," said Lt. Jesse Silva. "[The department] will investigate it from a standpoint of tactics, training, and equipment, to see if our officers used the proper tactics.”
The man whose name has not been released was charged with driving under the influence and resisting arrest, according to KSBY.