Attorneys gave their final arguments at a hearing Thursday, which addresses allegations by the defense that the failure by prosecutors and the Sheriff’s Department to turn over records in the past – and the potential that they still haven’t turned over everything – suggest Dekraai won’t receive a fair penalty trial and he should be spared the death penalty.
Orange County’s civil grand jury said ongoing court hearing about possible misuse of jailhouse informants have turned into a “witch-hunt,” and should stop after the grand jury determined there is no “systemic, widespread informant program.”
Commander Jon Briggs testified Tuesday the jail house informant scandal developed because high management turnover left junior deputies with too much control, meaning “inmates were running the asylum on occasion.”
The contents of the Special Handling Log — notes kept by deputies on informants and other inmates — are at the center of a hearing which explores whether Sheriff’s Department officials withheld or shredded key documents.
The county grand jury is investigating alleged illegal conduct by prosecutors and sheriff’s deputies relating to an informants network inside county jails. Grand jurors are being aided by a former United States attorney.
A review, sparked by revelations of prosecutorial misconduct involving a jailhouse informants system, found the office is significantly behind other local counties in the level of training provided to prosecutors.