UPDATE, 5:57p.m. Los Angeles County Sheriff's Spokesman Steve Whitmore said Sheriff Lee Baca decided to begin termination proceedings against the deputies after reviewing the results of an internal affairs investigation earlier this week. The investigation is sealed. Whitmore said the deputies are free to contest their firing and could appeal all the way to the state's civil service board.
The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department has notified seven deputies that it intends to fire them for being part of the secret “Jump out Boys” group that allegedly saw police shootings as a positive and got matching tattoos, the Los Angeles Times reports.
The group had a pamphlet describing its creed, according to the Times. The seven deputies being let go were part of an elite gang enforcement team.
Internal Sheriff’s Department cliques have fostered an aggressive, gang-like mentality and behavior among its members, according to officials. The Sheriff’s Department has long dealt with secret cliques, according to the Times, but officials have recently sought to crack down on those groups due to worries that they tarnish the department’s image and encourage unethical conduct.
Investigators didn’t uncover any criminal behavior with the Jump Out Boys, but the group did clash with department policies, according to the Times.
The group’s pamphlet noted that the group was “not afraid to get our hands dirty,” but that they were different from the criminals, the Times reports.