LOS ANGELES, Sept. 23 (UPI) -- A federal judge sentenced six members of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department to prison time Tuesday for their roles in allegedly obstructing an FBI probe into civil rights violations in the city's jail system.
Sheriff's Deputies found Brown's cellphone and discovered the number for the FBI Civil Rights Division in the call history.
Prosecutors alleged that several members of the LA County Sheriff's department conspired to obstruct the FBI's probe into abuses occurring in the jails by hiding Brown, moving him from cell to cell, jail to jail, under assumed names, and falsifying records to reflect that he'd already been released.
Additionally, prosecutors alleged that a group of Sheriff's officers attempted to intimidate an FBI agent involved in the investigation, the one who had helped get Brown the phone, by showing up at her place of residence and threatening to arrest her for introducing contraband into the jail.
According to the Los Angeles Daily News, Assistant U.S. Attorney Maggie Carter told the jury the six defendants attempted to "silence the witness."
"Even if this was standard operating procedure, this was a federal investigation and they had the intent to commit obstruction of justice," she said.
"You broke the vow you made to protect the public and serve the community," U.S. District Court Judge Percy Anderson said, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Of the attempts to "shield the dirty deputies," Anderson said: "Perhaps it is a symptom of the corrupt culture within the Sheriff's Department."
"Blind obedience to a corrupt culture has serious consequences," Anderson added