A jury on Wednesday acquitted a former Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy of federal charges that he helped cover up the beating of a visitor to a county jail, but the panel deadlocked over whether the lawman lied to investigators about the incident.
The verdict marks a rare loss for the U.S. attorney’s office in Los Angeles, which has won a string of abuse and obstruction cases against deputies and higher-ranking sheriff’s officials following an FBI investigation into county jails.
Byron Dredd, 33, faced two counts of wrongdoing that arose from allegations he had conspired with the deputies involved in the beating to fabricate reports that placed the blame on the victim. A third charge indicated he lied about the incident to FBI agents during an interview. Dredd himself was not accused of taking part in the beating.
After deliberating for three days, the jury found Dredd not guilty of the conspiracy charge and of writing a false report. However, jurors were deadlocked on the lying allegation.
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