Bizarre story from Idaho, where two men were confronted by two deputies at a gas station, apparently because one deputy misheard a complaint about the band Nickelback as “nickel sack,” which he interpreted to be some sort of reference to marijuana.

Here’s the video:

Note that the men repeatedly give the deputies permission to search their car. (Generally not advisable, even if you’re innocent.) Note, too, that it is the deputies who escalate the situation by first using profanity, then refusing to let the men go, even after it’s clear that they had done nothing wrong. The two men seem pretty polite, at least until the deputies arrest one of them.

At one point, one deputy dismisses the possibility that he misheard the phrase “nickel sack” as “a bulls— story.” Given that the two men were never charged, which means the police never found any drugs, it seems pretty clear that is exactly what happened. Finally, it isn’t captured on the video, but the audio seems to indicate that one of the deputies drew his gun just before pulling one of the men from the car and handcuffing him. Again, all of this for nothing more than an alleged uttering of the phrase “nickel sack.”

The deputies are from the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office. According to the Coeur d’Alene Press, sheriff’s department spokesman Lt. Stu Miller said the incident is “being internally investigated.” He added, “We take this type of thing very seriously and we tell our people all the time to do their job as though someone is always watching, and they are always watching.”

That said, the sheriff’s department is refusing to release the deputies’ names. Of course, if they’d found a bunch of pot, their names would probably be in a press release, along with the names of the two men they confronted. Miller explained to the Press, “Obviously our deputies are human — they’re not infallible. But I’ve got to make sure the deputies are treated fairly in this as well.”

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