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Federal officer admits sexually assaulting inmate at LA jail

May 19, 2022 GMT

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A federal corrections officer who worked at the main jail in Los Angeles has agreed to plead guilty to sexually assaulting a female inmate who was in an isolation cell while recovering from COVID-19, according to court documents.

Jose Viera could face a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison when he’s sentenced later this year, NBC Los Angeles reported Thursday.

According to a plea agreement obtained by the news station, Viera got into bed with the inmate at the Metropolitan Detention Center, fondled her body, and “penetrated her” in December 2020.

Viera lied about the nature of the incident when he was interviewed by the FBI and an analysis of the sheets on the inmate’s bed revealed the presence of his semen, according to the court documents.

Viera, a U.S. Bureau of Prisons employee, agreed to plead guilty to a single charge of depriving the woman of her rights under the color of law.

It was not clear if Viera was being held in jail.