(WSVN) - What started as a simple house check — has led to a probation officer being placed on leave. Part of the incident — caught on camera. 7’s Brian Entin has our special assignment report — “Tale of the Tape.”
It should have been a routine home check, but this father and son say things turned ugly. And that’s when the son started recording his probation officer.
James Bejacmar, probation officer on recording: “Yeah, I’m trained to put his a** down. I would have (expletive) hurt him.”
You can’t see much in this video, but you can hear state probation officer James Bejacmar raising his voice.
Twenty-one-year-old Joshua Perry says it was unprovoked.
Joshua Perry: “Started going crazy. Started cursing. He wanted to run up on me. I was like, ‘Hey sir, what are you doing?'”
Joshua, who is on house arrest, recorded the officer talking to his father outside their Miami home.
Joshua says he felt threatened by officer Bejacmar…
But the officer claims it’s Joshua who “…became so upset that he charged towards…” him.
Listen to the probation officer tell Joshua’s father that he could have hurt his son.
James Bejacmar on recording: “If you wasn’t here, I would have hurt him. I would have (expletive) hurt him. I would have hurt him. I don’t carry my .45 on me, but other officers probably would have killed him already.”
This recording is now part of a Department of Corrections investigation.
Brian Entin: “Did you lunge at him or threaten him in anyway?”
Joshua Perry: “No, sir. He’s an officer, so I wouldn’t even do that.”
Joshua says it was the officer who got in “his” face.
Joshua Perry: “He got up and he swung and my father jumped in and was like, ‘Hey.'”
Brian Entin: “Did you do anything to him when he got that close?”
Joshua Perry: “No. I just started recording.”
In the video, you hear Bejacmar say that probation officers are trained to shoot if they feel threatened.
James Bejacmar on recording: “You better tell him, he needs to watch himself. Because… one of these Spanish officers, if he would have charged him, they would have unloaded him. He would have died right there. OK, because, see, they train us — when we go in people’s houses, if they come at you, blow ’em away, shoot ’em.”
Joshua’s father filed this formal complaint with the state.
He admits his son did curse — but says he never threatened the officer.
Jonathan Perry, father: “My son knows his position. He is on probation. He is on house arrest. He is not trying to go back to jail.”
And — it’s important to point out — the officer did not arrest Joshua that night.
Jonathan Perry: “He got in his car and left.”
In a statement, the Florida Department of Corrections says: “The department has zero tolerance for this behavior. The officer is being placed on leave while the department determines the appropriate action.”
Joshua admits he is not an angel.
He was arrested on attempted robbery, gun charges and grand theft when he was 19 — but was not sent to prison.
Instead, his convictions led to boot camp, which he completed.
He now has a job.
Joshua Perry: “Everyone makes mistakes. I went the wrong route.”
7News’ request for an interview with the officer was turned down through the Department of Corrections. The state says he has been a probation officer for 15 years and has no prior complaints or disciplinary actions. He remains on paid leave.
Copyright 2018 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.