Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca said there was no explanation in personnel files as to why criminal records and histories of lying were ignored when the Sheriff’s Department hired more than 80 deputies with troubled backgrounds in 2010.
“There was no justification provided by the Undersheriff,” Baca wrote in a letter to the Board of Supervisors this week.
The Sheriff’s Department confirmed last month it had made ‘mistakes’ in hiring 84 of nearly 200 police officers who had worked for the now-defunct County Office of Public Safety -- after the Los Angeles Times detailed problematic work histories that should have disqualified them from becoming deputy sheriffs.
The letter revealed 15 of the deputies have already been the subject of internal investigations resulting in discipline and internal cases against at least 9 other deputies are still pending.
Baca blamed former Undersheriff Larry Waldie for the hirings, and in the letter, said the Supervisors should ask County attorneys for advice on whether there is any recourse.
-- Eric Leonard