A former Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputy testified Wednesday that he and other deputies beat a handcuffed visitor to Men’s Central Jail and tried to justify the violence by falsely accusing the visitor of attacking them.
Pantamitr Zunggeemoge told jurors in the brutality trial of three of his former colleagues in a downtown federal courtroom that the deputies concocted a story that the visitor assaulted them when they unfastened one of his handcuffs to fingerprint him.
The visitor, Gabriel Carrillo, had been handcuffed throughout and was repeatedly punched and pepper-sprayed, Zunggeemoge said. He and his colleagues wrote false reports and he lied during a preliminary hearing for Carrillo after the visitor was charged with assaulting law enforcement officers, Zunggeemoge said under questioning by a federal prosecutor.
“I didn’t want to be the one who told the truth about what really happened,” Zunggeemoge said when asked why he had lied. “Everyone was going to go with the story we made up.”
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