L.A. County Sheriff Announces Inquiry Into Secret Societies of Deputies With Matching Tattoos

A tattoo worn by L.A. County Sheriff's Deputy Samuel Aldama is seen in a photo displayed during a press conference held by the Sweeney Firm on July 14, 2018. (Credit: KTLA)

A tattoo worn by L.A. County Sheriff’s Deputy Samuel Aldama is seen in a photo displayed during a press conference held by the Sweeney Firm on July 14, 2018. (Credit: KTLA)

Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell has launched a comprehensive inquiry into secret deputy cliques and is looking into whether gangs that condone illicit behavior are operating within his ranks, he said Thursday.

McDonnell’s announcement at a meeting of the Sheriff Civilian Oversight Commission comes two weeks after allegations surfaced that as many as 20 deputies at the Compton Station have matching tattoos featuring a skeleton holding a rifle.

A Compton deputy recently admitted under oath that he was inked with the skull logo in June 2016, about two months before he was involved in a fatal shooting, The Times reported.

Watchdogs said the revelations were alarming given the department’s long history of secret societies that promoted excessive force and enforced a code of silence.

Read the full story on LATimes.com.