Former L.A. County Sheriff’s Deputy Found Guilty of Lying to Cover up Jailhouse Beating

Gabriel Carrillo and Grace Martinez show a photo she took of Carrillo a few days after he was beaten by Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies at the Men's Central Jail. (Credit: Don Bartlett /Los Angeles Times)

Gabriel Carrillo and Grace Martinez show a photo she took of Carrillo a few days after he was beaten by Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies at the Men's Central Jail. (Credit: Don Bartlett /Los Angeles Times)

A former Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy was convicted Friday of lying to federal investigators in an attempt to conceal the 2011 beating of a handcuffed man who was visiting his brother in jail, prosecutors said.

Byron Dredd, 36, was found guilty of making false statements to the FBI during a July 2012 interview in which he painted the victim as the aggressor, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Central District of California said in a news release.

Dredd and five other deputies assigned to the Men’s Central Jail have already been convicted and sentenced in connection with the assault on the restrained victim, identified by the Los Angeles Times as Gabriel Carrillo. The newspaper reported that he had been left bloody and bruised by the attack.

The deputies handcuffed Carrillo and took him into an employee break room because they thought he was carrying a cellphone, which is against state law. The victim’s hands remained restrained behind his back while they beat him, prosecutors said.

Dredd was in an adjacent room and witnessed the assault through a metal window. But he lied about what he saw, and false reports filed by Dredd and others led to Carrillo being charged with multiple crimes, including resisting an officer and battery, investigators said.

In attempting to cover it up, Dredd falsely told the FBI he saw Carrillo swing at and punch the deputes, then push another as he tried to escape. Prosecutors determined the statements were blatant lies because they had proof the victim was handcuffed the entire time.

“The defendant deceived investigators who were investigating very serious crimes, including civil rights abuses and an attempted cover-up,” Paul Delacourt, the assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office, said in a statement.

Prosecutors said Dredd’s is the final case stemming from the FBI’s far-reaching investigation of corruption abuse at county jails, which led to the high-profile conviction of former Sheriff Lee Baca and 21 other members of the department.

Dredd was previously acquitted of conspiring to violate Carrillo’s civil rights and obstructing a federal investigation during a trial in 2016. At the time, the jury was unable to reach an unanimous verdict on the false statements charge.

Others involved in the beating have already been sentenced to prison, including former Sgt. Eric Gonzalez, who is serving eight years for violating Carrillo’s civil rights and falsifying reports.

Dredd is scheduled to be sentenced on May 20 and will face up to five years in federal prison.

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