SAN BERNARDINO COUNTY, Calif. – On Wednesday, November 16, 2022, deputies from the Apple Valley Police Department responded to the 20000 block of Bear Valley Road for a report of an assault.

Upon arrival, deputies learned the suspect, later identified as Francis Pusok, assaulted the clerk and fled the location. Deputies from Apple Valley Police Department observed Pusok’s vehicle in the area and attempted a traffic stop, but Pusok did not yield, and a pursuit ensued. During the approx. 4 mile pursuit, Pusok showed wanton disregard for public safety when he failed to stop at posted stop signs, drove into opposing lanes, reached speeds of over 90 miles per hour in residential neighborhoods, and drove head-on toward deputies multiple times.

The pursuit ended near Tussing Ranch Road and Navajo Road when Pusok crossed over the train tracks at a high rate of speed, causing his vehicle to roll. Pusok sustained injuries during the collision and was transported to a local hospital for treatment. During the clean-up of the crash site, a handgun was located.

During trial, prosecutors utilized testimony from several witnesses including the convenience store clerk who suffered a dislocated shoulder as a result of the incident, and a second civilian witness who observed portions of the assault. Two sheriff’s deputies also testified as to the defendant’s attempt to strike them with his vehicle.  

Pusok’s history of felonious behavior, including two prior strikes arising from a 2006 attempted robbery and a 2015 Battery with Serious Bodily Injury making it a three-strikes case, were incorporated during trial.

On January 9, 2024, a jury found defendant Pusok guilty of battery, assault with a deadly weapon on emergency personnel – great bodily injury likely, being a felon in possession of a firearm, evading an officer against traffic, and assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury. The jury also found true a special allegation for causing great bodily injury.

Monday, June 10, 2024, at a sentencing hearing, Pusok was sentenced to 65 years, 4 months to life.

This case was investigated by the Apple Valley Police Department and prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Jason Wilkinson of our Victorville Major Crimes Unit. The Honorable Judge Debra Harris presided over the trial.