A 21-year veteran of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office was arrested after he was accused of using excessive force during an encounter with a subject in Tampa.
Sheriff Chad Chronister announced the firing of Sergeant Janak Amin on Friday.
Chronister said Amin became frustrated when an unarmed Black man refused to identify himself after he was taken into custody. The man had been mistakenly sent to a sheriff’s office detention facility from a health treatment center.
The sheriff said the man was not aggressive and was lying on the ground when Amin pointed a gun to his head and urged him to identify himself.
Other deputies at the scene de-escalated the situation by using a rapid identification method to determine the man’s name, Chronister said.
“Sergeant Amin’s actions, the violation of public trust, and dishonoring of his oath to serve and protect is despicable,” Chronister said during a Friday news conference.
Chronister said Amin has no previous history of using excessive force, but the deputy's actions were not warranted.
“I don’t think this incident is indicative of who Sergeant Amin is,” Chronister said. “But regardless, it only takes one incident to, again, violate that oath that you take and violate the public’s trust and again, break the law.”
Chronister said no video footage of the incident was available. The Sheriff's Office is in the process of obtaining body cameras for its deputies. Those devices should be used starting next month.
Chronister credited the deputies who "acted immediately" to de-escalate the situation, pointing to recent training they took part in on intervening when they witness violations to Sheriff’s Office policies and professional standards.
“I want to also commend the deputies who came forward to immediately come forward to report this most egregious act,” Chronister said. “While I know it was difficult to do so, this is the type of transparency we must have as a law enforcement agency, whose mission is to serve, protect and defend the community while preserving the rights and dignity of all."
Amin was charged with Aggravated Assault with a Deadly Weapon.