Crime & Justice

LA Sheriff's deputy arrested for allegedly raping female inmates

Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell.
David McNew/Getty Images

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A 10-year veteran of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department was arrested Wednesday at the Century Regional Detention Center in Lynwood for allegedly raping two female inmates that morning, Sheriff Jim McDonnell said Thursday.

Giancarlo Scotti, 31, is expected to be charged with two counts of rape and two counts of oral copulation under color of authority, the sheriff said. One of the women had told a staffer who teaches classes at the facility about the assaults.

"It’s disgusting," McDonnell said at a news conference at sheriff’s headquarters in downtown L.A. "Somebody who is in custody is in our care. We are responsible to ensure their safety."

Scotti is accused of sexually assaulting the women in the early morning hours Wednesday after getting them alone somewhere inside the lockup. The sheriff would not say where, but noted the facility, which holds 2,090 female inmates, is sparsely staffed.

"We are spread very, very thinly," said McDonnell.

Scotti is free on $100,000 bail and is on paid administrative leave pending the results of an investigation, the sheriff said. Once formally charged in court, he would no longer be paid.

KPCC was unable to reach Scotti for comment.

This is the second arrest in as many months of an L.A. jail official accused of sexual misconduct.

Last month, a sheriff’s sergeant at the Twin Towers downtown lockup was charged with sexual battery. He had allegedly demanded sexual favors from a subordinate in exchange for giving her time off.

This story has been updated.