Sheriff

By Greg Cappis, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin
Posted: 05/29/14, 10:08 PM PDT | Updated: 38 secs ago

RANCHO CUCAMONGA >> Four more inmates have filed a lawsuit against San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon and at least seven other members of the department, alleging abuse while incarcerated at the West Valley Detention Center jail.

The complaint, filed Thursday in the U.S. District Court in Riverside, is the second lawsuit filed by inmates against the Sheriff’s Department this month. The complaint says inmates who met with lawyers have been threatened by deputies.

“On at lest one occasion a prisoner was told, ‘I am not afraid of your (expletive) lawsuit. I will beat your ass,’ ” according to the complaint.

Last month McMahon fired three rookie deputies who worked in the jail — Brock Teyechea, Andrew Cruz and Nicholas Oakley — after his department and the FBI announced they were investigating claims of abuse at West Valley.

Cruz and Teyechea as well as McMahon, the jail’s commander Jeff Rose, four other deputies identified only by their last names — Ramos, Howell, Kopasz, Escomilla — and the county are named in the most recent suit, which includes allegations similar to the one filed by six other inmates on May 7.

A sheriff’s spokeswoman declined to comment on the complaint Thursday night, saying she hadn’t been briefed on the lawsuit. Attorneys representing the inmates — Stanley Hodge, James Terrell and Sharon Brunner — could not be reached for comment.

The inmates named as plaintiffs in the suit filed Thursday are Michael Bishop, Paul Piceno, Michael Castro and Edward Garcia.

To read entire story, click here.