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Former L.A. sheriff’s deputy sentenced to prison for lying to FBI about 2011 beating

PASADENA, CA, CA.-MAY 29, 2014: Gabriel Carrillo, listens to attorney Ronald Kaye speak about the
Gabriel Carrillo, right, listens to attorney Ronald Kaye speak about Los Angeles County’s $1.175-million civil lawsuit settlement with Carrillo during a news conference in May 2014.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

A former deputy with Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department was sentenced Monday to one year in federal prison after lying to the FBI about the 2011 beating of a handcuffed visitor to the Men’s Central Jail.

Byron Dredd, 37, was convicted in January for making false statements to the FBI during a 2012 interview. The maximum penalty for lying to the FBI is five years in federal prison.

On Feb. 26, 2011, Gabriel Carrillo visited his brother in jail. Deputies handcuffed Carrillo, believing he had a cellphone in violation of state law, and brought him into an employee break room. Deputies proceeded to punch, kick and pepper-spray him while he remained handcuffed. Dredd watched the beating from an adjacent room.

During an interview on July 17, 2012, Dredd echoed the deputies’ accounts and told FBI officials that Carrillo had attacked deputies and tried to escape. The false reports that portrayed Carrillo as the aggressor led to charges against him, including resisting an officer and battery.

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Dredd was retried in January after a 2016 mistrial, when a jury acquitted him on charges that he helped cover up the beating but deadlocked over whether he lied to investigators.

“All law enforcement officers will be held accountable for abusing their positions — whether that includes the illegal use of force or lying to cover up a civil rights violation,” said U.S. Atty. Nick Hanna at the time of Dredd’s conviction. “This former deputy actively tried to conceal the illegal actions of his fellow deputies, and today a jury held him accountable for his role in the cover-up of an unjustified beating.”

The five other deputies involved in the beating and cover-up were previously convicted and sentenced to prison, including former Sgt. Eric Gonzalez, who is serving an eight-year prison term after he was found guilty of violating Carrillo’s civil rights and falsifying reports.

Dredd was not charged with involvement in the beating.

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Dredd’s attorney tried to portray him as a victim, insisting that he caught only glimpses of the beating.

“Byron Dredd is not a liar,” attorney Nina Marino told jurors in 2016. “He made a mistake.”

In a 2015 victim impact statement, Carrillo wrote that he remains fearful of the police.

“I did no wrong — they did it to themselves,” he wrote. “They ruined their careers and have hurt their children and parents.”

Times staff writer Joel Rubin and Southern California News Service contributed to this report.

colleen.shalby@latimes.com

@cshalby


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