via CNN

An elected official in California has been arrested on accusations of felony child abuse after a neighbor videotaped him beating his stepson with a belt during a backyard game of catch, authorities told CNN Saturday.

Anthony Sanchez, 34, a director with the Imperial County Irrigation District, turned himself in to authorities Friday afternoon, said Imperial County Sheriff’s Lt. Scott Sheppeard.

The case will be presented to the Imperial County District Attorney’s office on Monday on whether a charge will be formally filed, Sheppeard told CNN.

Sanchez, a resident of Heber, was released Friday after posting bond on $100,000 bail, a jail clerk told CNN.

Sanchez is also a T-ball and soccer coach, CNN affiliate KGTV reported.

In an interview with CNN, Sanchez’s attorney, Ryan Childers, said that the man who’s videotaped whipping a boy with a belt is Sanchez.

But Childers said he doesn’t agree that the videotaped interaction between Sanchez and his 10-year-old stepson warrants the stiff charge of felony child abuse, which carries a maximum sentence of six years in state prison.

“Certainly the video is hard to watch. We acknowledge that,” Childers told CNN. “The question concerning that though is, was this criminal conduct under California law, and if so, is this the most serious type of child abuse? Is this an appropriate charge? What’s appropriate here and what is criminal conduct is what is the issue here.”

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