In a report released today, the ACLU found that the same overcrowding and unsanitary conditions sited at Men’s Central Jail more than 30 years ago continue to persist today. According to the report, untreated mental illness, prisoner abuse—both inmates against inmates as well as officers against inmates—and overcrowding have made little improvement. The ACLU claims their task of assessing the corruption was further complicated by the Sheriff Department’s refusal to release basic information about how it conducts investigations of prisoner abuse and metes out punishment. With approximately 20,000 detainees, the Los Angeles jail system is the largest and most expensive in the nation.
Peter Eliasberg, managing attorney for the ACLU of Southern California; he oversees the ACLU’s Jail Project and manages Rutherford v. Baca litigation, a three decades old case challenging conditions in the county jail.
Steve Whitmore, spokesperson with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department