Another Sheriff's Employee Who Tarnished Badge Leaves OCSD
In light of the Orange County Register report on Sheriff's Deputy Kevin Taylor, the lead jailer at the center of inmate John Derek Chamberlain's October 2006 death by stomping, finally leaving OCSD, it's worth comparing his future with that of the killers many believe he egged on.
The Weekly's Nick Schou took readers inside Theo Lacy Branch Jail after the incident and later blogged about grand jury documents showing the most bloody murder in the history of the county's jail system was the result of TV-addicted Taylor being what his colleagues called "lazy" and what inmates under his charge called "a bully."
While supposedly watching guard over the roughly 150 inmates in Theo Lacy's F-West Barracks, where John Chamberlain, a Mission Viejo software engineer arrested for possession of child pornography, was murdered Oct. 5, 2006, his colleagues say, Deputy Kevin Taylor not only routinely watched the tube, but also watched films like Blackhawk Down on a portable DVD player and made personal calls or sent text messages on his cell phone.
After Taylor and another deputy told inmates that Chamberlain, who was behind bars awaiting trial on misdemeanor charges of possessing child pornography, was a "molester," Chamberlain asked to be moved to a safer cell. That never happened, and some inmates decided to gang attack Chamberlain mere feet from deputies who did not intervene, including Taylor, who later asked a colleague to change daily logs to show Chamberlain had not asked to be moved.
Now, some who were being incarcerated as non-violent offenders before being charged with murder in the attack await their fates while the sheriff's personnel who set the incident in motion will do no time. In fact, Taylor, who refused to testify for fear of incriminating himself, received 10 months of pay for not working before leaving the department.
A grand jury report found jail deputies slept on duty, played video games and enlisted jailhouse bullies to beat up inmates who didn't obey, but DA Tony Rackauckas said he could find no evidence of wrongdoing by OCSD personnel. Of course, Rackauckas has a long history of finding no evidence of wrongdoing by OCSD personnel, including an ex-sheriff recently branded a convicted felon.
Get the ICYMI: Today's Top Stories Newsletter Our daily newsletter delivers quick clicks to keep you in the know
Catch up on the day's news and stay informed with our daily digest of the most popular news, music, food and arts stories in Orange County, delivered to your inbox Monday through Friday.