FORT LAUDERDALE (CBSMiami) – A Fort Lauderdale police officer is recovering at a hospital after a Fort Lauderdale man violently attacked him at a gas station, leaving the lawman with a broken ankle.

Stretching as he walked up to see the judge, Jermetrius Deveaux looked seemingly calm. He even grinned in his booking photo, but prosecutors say that those looks are deceiving.

Deveaux erupted into violence just hours earlier, breaking a Fort Lauderdale police officer’s ankle while being handcuffed.

“He’s fighting so hard with one hand cuff on his already and it takes three people to hold him down until more officers can get to the scene,” the prosecutor told the judge.

Around 10:30 p.m. Tuesday, the officer, whose name has not been released, was responded to a disturbance at the Food Plus store, 3031 Davie Boulevard,

According to police, Jermetrius Deveaux, 23, was repeatedly asked to leave the store.

He refused, prompting store clerks Ahassan Shamim and Pappu Ahmad to call police.

When the officer arrived, he told Deveaux he would be arrested if he continued to stay, police said.

Deveaux ignored the officer’s warning, so the officer attempted to take the man into custody.

That’s when Deveaux allegedly attacked the officer, who fell to the ground, receiving either a broken ankle.

Deveaux stayed on top of the officer, but was ripped off of him by Shamim and Ahmad.

The two held down Deveaux until back-up officers arrived on-scene and took the 23-year-old into custody.

Shamim and Ahmad were commended for their quick and courageous response, and neither clerk was injured.

In court, Deveaux told the judge he is broke. He lost his job a month ago and has no place to live.

“Who are you living with now?” asked the Judge. “I’ve been living on the streets in cardboard crates and boxes,” he said.

The officer was transported to Broward General Hospital, where he is still recovering from surgery.

Detectives are urging anyone with information about this incident to contact Detective Dustin Miller at 954-828-6621.

Ted Scouten