SANTA CLARA COUNTY (BCN) — An ex-Santa Clara County correctional deputy has been charged for allegedly kicking an inmate’s head in county jail three years ago, Santa Clara County prosecutors said Tuesday.
Timmy Tri, 35, is facing charges of assault and battery by an officer, assault with deadly force and personally inflicting great bodily injury, prosecutors said.
On Oct. 3, 2013, the inmate was involved in an argument with another correctional deputy on the fifth floor of Santa Clara County Main Jail in San Jose, according to the district attorney’s office.
The dispute turned into a physical fight in which the inmate ended up on the ground, where two correctional officers held him down while Tri allegedly kicked and punched him multiple times, prosecutors said.
The victim needed stitches and was left with a bone fracture in his face. Inmates and jail guards who witnessed the alleged assault didn’t see Tri threatened in a way that could explain why he used force, prosecutors said.
The sheriff’s office first brought to the case to the district attorney’s office in 2014 and their recommendation to file charges was rejected, according to prosecutors.
The case was sent again by the sheriff’s office earlier this year as part of the jail reforms process in which investigators re-evaluated past officer misconduct cases and prosecutors decided to file charges, sheriff’s Deputy Reginald Cooks said.
Tri was arrested without incident around 8 p.m. Monday in San Jose on a warrant served by county deputies, Cooks said
Tri was hired to work with the county Department of Correction in 2009 and was placed on administrative leave soon after the alleged assault, Cooks said.
His last day of paid employment with the county was on Aug. 16, 2015, according to Cooks.
Tri is scheduled for arraignment in September at the Hall of Justice in San Jose, prosecutors said.
If convicted as charged, Tri face seven years in prison, according to prosecutors.
“Guards sometimes need to use force to subdue an inmate for a variety of reasons, but they must always maintain self-control,” Santa Clara County Deputy District Attorney John Chase said in a statement.”
“There’s no justification for kicking an inmate in the head and face while he is pinned to the floor,” Chase said.