A former sheriff’s deputy pleaded guilty Wednesday to filing a false report about a Christmas Day 2010 incident in which another deputy was convicted of misdemeanor assault charges involving two county jail inmates.
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Robert J. Perry immediately sentenced Karin Cring, 34, to 500 hours of community service that she has already completed and a year left on probation under a May 2014 agreement with the prosecution in which she’s already served two years of probation.
Cring was initially charged with a felony, but the prosecution agreed to allow her to plead to a misdemeanor count as a result of her agreement to testify in the trial of co-defendant Jermaine Jackson, who was convicted last week of three misdemeanor counts of simple assault.
Jackson, 38, was acquitted of three more serious felony counts each of assault likely to cause great bodily injury, assault by a public officer and filing a false report.
Earlier this week, after Jackson was acquitted of the final felony count against him, one of his attorneys said he believed the misdemeanor convictions were “inconsistent” with jurors’ other findings and that he planned to file a motion for a new trial.
“We feel that Jermaine Jackson was sort of made a scapegoat for all of the failings of the Sheriff’s Department,” defense attorney Richard Hirsch said.
After the verdicts, Deputy District Attorney Ann Marie Wise said, “Despite the increase in public awareness of police abuse, this shows just how difficult it can be to secure a conviction against a member of law enforcement.”
Jackson was accused of assaulting three inmates — Cesar Campana, Derek Griscavage and Jonathan Murray — in separate incidents between 2009 and 2011.
During the trial, Jackson testified that he punched Murray in the eye when “he tried to kick me in the groin.”
Jackson also acknowledged that he punched Campana in the ear and kicked him in the head, saying that was the only way he could control the inmate.
Griscavage head-butted the deputy during a physical encounter, Jackson said.
Jurors convicted Jackson last week of misdemeanor charges involving his interactions with Campana and Griscavage at a Compton lockup and the Twin Towers Correctional Facility, respectively, and acquitted him of all counts involving Murray.
Another of Jackson’s attorneys, Vicki Podberesky, argued during the trial that the deputy used reasonable force to protect himself and others, but Wise contended that Jackson “solves problems in the jail with his fists” and “filed false reports … to justify his actions.”
Hirsch told jurors that Jackson worked in the mental health section of the jail “with inmates who were violent, unpredictable” and suffered from psychotic episodes when they failed to take their medication.
Jackson has been relieved of duty without pay by the sheriff’s department. He is facing a maximum sentence between one year and 18 months, depending on how the misdemeanor convictions are interpreted at sentencing, according to Wise.
—Staff and wire reports
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