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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

San Bernardino County sheriff: Attacks increase in county jails

The SunInmate-on-inmate assaults at San Bernardino County jails are up 100 percent and inmate-on-deputy assaults are up 50 percent since the Public Safety Realignment Act took effect in October 2011, Sheriff John McMahon said Tuesday.

McMahon presented the information while addressing the Board of Supervisors during a presentation from county law enforcement officials on the impacts of prison realignment thus far.

"These are a whole new set of inmates," McMahon said, adding that county inmates have become "more violent" and "sophisticated" since AB109 took effect in October 2011. The law shifted oversight of low-level parolees from the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation to county probation departments.

And San Bernardino County has one of the highest concentrations of parolees in the state.

District Attorney Michael Ramos is troubled by the news and told the Board of Supervisors Tuesday something had to be done about it.

"When I hear from the sheriff that attacks on his deputies are up 50 percent in the jails, we've got to do something about that," Ramos said.

In a statement released following Tuesday's meeting, Ramos said his office is "actively pursuing the formation of a unit that focuses on crimes against peace officers. "

"I feel that it's important to let every officer know we will prosecute defendants who commit crimes against peace officers to the fullest extent of the law," Ramos said. continue reading...

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