End the Lie

Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department ‘on a routine basis has been using unreasonable force’ in jails

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By End the Lie

Gabriel Carrillo was beaten by deputies while visiting his brother in Men’s Central Jail. (Image credit: American Civil Liberties Union of Southern California)

A report from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) of Southern California revealed that jailers with the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department have routinely struck inmates in the head unnecessarily with various objects, fists and even against jail bars causing “horrific head injuries.”

This is the same department looking at operating drones over Los Angeles, even though drones are already being operated domestically by the U.S. military in concert with law enforcement, and the same department whose deputies have actually detained people and accused them of being in league with al Qaeda simply for taking pictures.

“Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies are responsible for horrific head injuries, such as broken orbital bones and deep cuts on the face and head, which often send inmates to the hospital,” according to the ACLU of Southern California’s report which includes 64 sworn statements from former and current inmates and civilian eyewitnesses compiled since 2009.

The report is entitled “Sheriff Baca’s Strike Force: Deputy Violence and Head Injuries of Inmates in LA County Jails” focuses on attacks in which the deputies targeted the inmates’ heads.

An ACLU news release also gets into the Rosas v. Baca case filed in March against the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department in an attempt to force the reform of county jails.

Along with the 64 sworn statements, the report includes corroborating documentation including photographs, medical records for 12 of those cases along with the opinion of Steve Martin, a former correctional officer and nationally recognized expert in corrections.

“[B]ecause closed fist head strikes, strikes to the head with blunt objects, using force so that inmates’ heads strike solid objects such as walls or floors, and/or kicks [to the head] by deputies produce needless and oftentimes serious injuries (and oftentimes corresponding officer hand injuries), and such tactics are not typically as effective in neutralizing inmate resistance as many other approved tactics that are less potentially injurious, such hard impact strikes to the head should be very infrequently used,” said Martin, according to the report.

The Sheriff’s Department regularly claims that these incidents are a result of inmate aggression, but the ACLU says that still does not justify the practice.

“Even if you take the Sheriff’s Department at its word, there’s a difference between reasonable force and unreasonable force. And the Sheriff’s Department on a routine basis has been using unreasonable force,” said Peter Eliasberg, the ACLU of Southern California’s legal director, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Eliasberg’s point is quite valid, especially when one realizes that the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department has had a policy in place for two decades which states that deputies may not intentionally strike inmates’ heads unless they are in danger and the specific circumstances justify the use of deadly orce.

According to the Los Angeles Times, “Department monitors, however, have said the department’s commitment to enforcing that policy has wavered.”

The policy was also updated in the last year to also include forcefully bringing an inmate’s head into contact with a hard object like a wall or jail bars.

Yet the disturbing abuses appear to continue unabated with the ACLU report stating, “Deputies have stomped on inmates’ heads, even after shackling those inmates’ hands.”

“They have bashed inmates’ faces into concrete walls,” the report continued. “They have fractured inmates’ facial bones.”

The accounts of the abuse handed out by the jailers is nothing short of horrific including one inmate who reported that a deputy kicked him in the head and jaw multiple times while he was on the floor.

“He was kicking me so hard that I saw a pool of my own blood on the floor,” wrote the inmate.

The timing of the release of the ACLU’s report on September 26, 2012 is quite interesting given that a final report by a county commission tasked with investigating allegations of abuses in jails is slated to be released on September 27, 2012.

It will be quite interesting to see if the findings of the county commission line up with those of the ACLU of Southern California but personally I’m not betting on it.

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6 Responses to Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department ‘on a routine basis has been using unreasonable force’ in jails

  1. Anonymous September 26, 2012 at 11:51 PM

    Cops in LA are the most evil pigs in the world

  2. Nimadan September 28, 2012 at 1:02 AM

    And if they weren’t brutal, the cons would be uncontrollable. There’s NO GOOD ANSWER. We’re caught in a trap here, one constructed over decades.

    The Masters deliberately sabotaged the social mores (including law and order) of traditional America precisely to put us in this trap. We’re confronted by a choice from Hell: Reject the protection of the Masters and be destroyed by the demonic barbarians that they have created, OR accept their protection and in doing so, become their slaves. Since at this point, most of the “citizens” are mindless sheeple, it’s obvious what choice the majority will make.

    Barring outside intervention (God, Aliens, Whatever…),
    the victory of the Masters is inevitable.

    • nate September 28, 2012 at 8:44 AM

      if we eliminate the slave workforce created by corporations, legalize drugs and get back our freedoms the “cons” would lose incentive to vicitimize us. most people are criminals as a way to make a living without being a slave.

  3. Nimadan September 28, 2012 at 4:45 PM

    Nate posted: “if we eliminate the slave workforce created by corporations, legalize drugs and get back our freedoms…”

    Yes, for what’s it’s worth, we SHOULD end Prohibition, legalize Freedom, and (most of all) break up the big corporations. But you know what “should’ is, right? Shit mixed with crud, that’s what.

    I flatly disbelieve that “most” criminals are poor, innocent victims who just want to make a decent living. They MIGHT have been if they were raised in a sane, structured society but they weren’t. They were socialized in post-Christian, post-Western, post-human hellholes socially engineered to create psychopathic mutants like them.

    As they are, most of them are irredeemable. Even if by some miracle, we get the Masters off our back, these orcs are still going to have to be killed.
    Otherwise, they’ll kill us for money, food, cigarettes, or shits and giggles.

  4. Anonymous September 29, 2012 at 12:26 AM

    the pigs are disgusting

  5. itsme October 10, 2012 at 4:02 PM

    Most of these “cops” are recycled military with latent homosexual desires frustrated with the size of their “member.”


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