By Hector Becerra
April 11, 2014, 9:37 p.m.

The San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department is cooperating with the FBI in a civil rights investigation over allegations that inmates have been mistreated at a jail facility, sheriff’s officials said Friday evening.

The alleged abuse took place at the West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga. According to a statement, on March 5 members of the department’s command staff “received information regarding possible misconduct by department personnel … and immediately launched an investigation.”

As they began to examine the allegations, sheriff’s officials learned that the FBI was already conducting an investigation.

Within a day, the Sheriff’s Department and FBI “were in full cooperation in order to ensure a comprehensive investigation is completed,” according to the Sheriff’s Department statement.

FBI spokeswoman Laura Eimiller said the bureau is conducting an independent investigation into alleged civil rights abuses at the jail facility.

“We investigate whether the allegations meet civil rights statutes,” she said. “The department has been cooperative.”

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