The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has completed a probe into the beating of a jailed detainee by sheriff's deputies in the booking area of the downtown Multnomah County Detention Center and has forwarded its findings to the US Department of Justice (DOJ) in Washington, DC.
The attorney general's office is now likely to take 60-90 days to decide whether to take any action against the sheriff's deputies involved in the beating of Michael Evans. At this stage, the FBI says it cannot discuss its findings and that the decision to proceed is now out of its hands—although the DOJ may request additional investigation by the local FBI office before reaching a decision.
Evans was shown on closed-circuit video being beaten, apparently without provocation, by six sheriff's deputies and Portland Police Bureau officers. He complained to the FBI in July, and was interviewed in jail by the Feds early in September.
Despite losing consciousness during the beating, Evans was initially denied medical attention and had to reset his own broken nose. He also had to stop his facial bleeding with a T-shirt and was thereafter placed in solitary confinement for his first 60 days in jail.
Evans launched a $60,000 lawsuit on September 12—the same day two more victims of alleged jail beatings, Frank Coleman and Mitchell Elliott, filed tort claims against the county.
Asked whether the FBI is investigating a systemic problem with prisoner abuse at the jail, FBI spokesman Mike Sweeney says: "We are always interested in any specific, credible, articulable allegations, and take those seriously. We count on the county's continued cooperation and support."