L.A. County Sheriff Lee Baca conducts an inspection of Men's Central Jail in Downtown Los Angeles in this photo from December 2011.
In an unusual decision, a federal jury in Los Angeles has held Sheriff Lee Baca personally liable for the excessive use of force against a jail inmate.
The jury found his conduct, and that of four other jail officials, was "malicious, oppressive or in reckless disregard," of inmate Tyler Willis during a 2009 incident in which deputies severely beat him.
The decision comes as the United States Justice Department conducts a wide ranging investigation of abuse of inmates in the LA County jail system.
KPCC's Frank Stoltze joins the show with more.