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Jails Under Scrutiny

Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca announced his retirement Tuesday after 48 years with the department. His replacement will be elected in June.

A series of Times' stories has tracked allegations of deputy brutality and other misconduct in the Los Angeles County jail system.

Jail volunteers accuse deputies of abusing L.A. County prisoners

Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies brutalized inmates on multiple occasions and their supervisors failed to take complaints of the abuse seriously, according to sworn declarations from three jail volunteers.

L.A. County Sheriff Baca plans to retire, sources say

Baca's decision comes after criminal charges were filed against 18 current and former deputies. He won office in 1998.

ID errors put hundreds in L.A. County jails

Wrongful incarcerations totaled 1,480 in the last five years, a Times inquiry finds.

L.A. County jail guards aid drug trading, sources say

Inmates pay deputies to smuggle narcotics and other contraband. Baca says the deputies involved are usually facing financial hardship.

Sheriff's officials probe exchange of photos of bloodied faces

A sergeant sent a photo of the injured face of an L.A. County Jail visitor after receiving a similar image of the face of the man's brother from an anti-gang deputy.

FBI probing reports of beatings in L.A. County jails

Federal agents sneaked a cellphone into Men's Central Jail as part of their investigation of misconduct, sources say.

18 current, former L.A. County sheriff's deputies face federal charges

Prosecutors say they found a 'wide scope of illegal conduct' by deputies and supervisors that went beyond mistreating inmates.

L.A. County jail probe includes claim that deputies beat visitor

The FBI probe into the Los Angeles County jails has expanded to include allegations of a man who says he was beaten and pepper sprayed by deputies while handcuffed during a visit to see his incarcerated brother.

Baca nephew is subject of inmate abuse probe

Sheriff's officials taped threat to arrest FBI agent, prosecutor says

Two L.A. County sheriff's sergeants who threatened to arrest an FBI agent secretly recorded the confrontation, a prosecutor said.

Federal jury finds Sheriff Baca liable in jail abuse case

The finding means Baca could be required to pay $100,000 out of pocket. Sheriff's officials call the verdict a 'huge mistake.'

Sheriff Baca backs proposal to create civilian oversight commission

The sheriff says a commission would strengthen transparency and accountability. One of his rivals for reelection, Cmdr. Bob Olmsted, also supports the plan.

L.A. Sheriff's indictments: Austrian diplomat improperly arrested

A dozen-plus L.A. County deputies face arrest in jail abuse probe

L.A. Sheriff's Department indictments: 'Sad day,' Baca says

FBI arrests sheriff's officials in L.A. County jails probe

L.A. Sheriff Baca held liable for $100,000 in inmate abuse case

Sheriff Baca spokesman disputes verdict in jail abuse case

Inmate abuse claims by deputy not corroborated; no charges filed

A sheriff's deputy, caught by the FBI smuggling a cellphone, alleged inmate abuse. But his stories weren't verified, records show.

L.A. County Sheriff Lee Baca agrees to long list of jail reforms

'I couldn't have written them better myself,' sheriff says of panel's suggestions to revamp his agency.

L.A. County jail violence sheriff's fault, panel says

Incidents expose flaws in civilian oversight of Sheriff's Dept.

L.A. County using cameras to combat wrongful jailings

Baca facing hardest test of career

Informant's credibility complicates jail probe

Official possibly hindered probe of jails

Sheriff accepts blame in jail Woes

Dysfunction at L.A.'s jails

It is becoming increasingly clear that the Sheriff's Department is institutionally unable — or worse, unwilling — to track and discipline deputies who engage in misconduct.

L.A. County sheriff's official tells of jail brutality

Inmate got a golf outing

Packed with heroin, burrito had bite

Toughest inmates guarded by some of least-experienced jailers

Two rookies assigned to the most dangerous floor at Los Angeles County's Men's Central Jail racked up some of the highest numbers of use-of-force incidents in the whole facility, documents show.

L.A. County supervisors impose jail oversight

They will appoint an outside panel to investigate allegations that inmates are abused and that a code of silence protects deputies.

Baca says he was out of touch with county's jails

The Los Angeles County sheriff said he had failed to implement important reforms that could have minimized deputy brutality against inmates. He also said his command staff has at times left him in the dark about jail conditions.

Code of silence among jail guards hinders abuse probes, watchdog says

Deputies who report wrongdoing are sometimes subjected to retaliation by colleagues, according to the Office of Independent Review. The findings echo allegations made by civilians.

U.S. widens inquiry into abuse at L.A. County jails

Sheriff's Department seeks to curtail the extent of subpoenas, which seek data on workers dating back to 2009.

30 jailers punished for inmate beatings, report says

Sheriff's Department watchdog releases study on inmate abuse. Sheriff Baca plans to install more video cameras in jail to document misconduct.

Remaking the L.A. County Sheriff's Dept.

It needs a change in culture. Supervisors should establish an independent panel to do just that.

Sheriff Baca announces changes in wake of jail abuse allegations

The agency will look into the case of a rookie who was allegedly told to beat a mentally ill inmate. The FBI is looking into allegations of abuse and other deputy misconduct.

Ex-deputy says he, others used improper force on inmates, Baca says

Sheriff Lee Baca says in a letter that the information led him to create a task force to examine a growing number of allegations of deputy misconduct in the jails.

Sheriff's officials investigate inmate's death

Man died two days after being struck in the head by a deputy, but it's unclear whether use of force was a factor.

Baca says he's open to U.S. probe

The L.A. County sheriff strikes a more conciliatory tone as criticism of his jail oversight mounts.

L.A. County deputy says he was forced to beat mentally ill inmate

The rookie, top recruit in his class, resigned after the incident, which he said was covered up. The deputy's supervisor was allegedly threatened by the young man's uncle, a sheriff's detective.

Sheriff Lee Baca listens to inmate complaints at town hall meeting

The session, which was opened up to The Times and a local TV station, offered a candid glimpse into the living conditions of jail inmates. The move also seemed to be an effort to show that the Sheriff's Department is transparent, can fix its own problems and hears out its inmates.

Sheriff Lee Baca: Right your ship

The L.A. County Sheriff's Department is teetering from misconduct allegations. Its leader can't keep ignoring badge-wearing rogues.

What's going on at our jails?

The FBI is investigating allegations of brutality and misconduct on the part of Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies in the jails. Sheriff Lee Baca should help, not hinder, the investigation.

L.A. County Sheriff Lee Baca gives details of FBI sting

Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca for the first time offered a detailed account of the FBI's undercover sting that allegedly caught one of his deputies smuggling a cellphone to an inmate.

FBI paid deputy to smuggle cellphone in jail sting

The officer allegedly accepted about $1,500 to smuggle a cellphone to an inmate who was an FBI informant, sources say. Sheriff asks whether the FBI is capable of investigating alleged jail abuses.

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