Evidence of lazy and inattentive deputies at Orange County's Theo Lacy jail is stoking debate about whether the Sheriff's Department should staff its jails with career correctional officers instead of sworn deputies.
Acting Sheriff Jack Anderson proposed the switch to lower-paid correctional officers in February as a cost-cutting measure, but he said Wednesday there could be additional benefits to using correctional officers.
Grand jury testimony made public this week showed that deputies in the jail watched movies, played video games, sent text messages and slept while inmate "shot-callers" were allowed to enforce jail rules.
Anderson said department supervisors were to blame for the environment at Theo Lacy, and he intended to move forward with a proposal to pull hundreds of deputies off jail duty and replace them with career correctional officers.
-- Stuart Pfeifer