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Detention deputy Joel De Los Reyes arrested, Adrian Nenu disciplined in battery of inmate

7:45 PM, Feb 24, 2014   |    comments
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Clearwater, Florida -- One detention deputy is under arrest and another was suspended following an Internal Affairs investigation by the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office.

The results of the investigation were released Monday during a press conference led by Sheriff Bob Gualtieri in Largo.

Investigators say Detention Deputy Joel De Los Reyes engaged in a verbal exchange with one of the inmates in a juvenile pod over whether the television would remain on or off, and over horseplay between two inmates.

At one point, De Los Reyes asked for help from Detention Deputy Adrian Nenu. 

While he was waiting for Nenu, De Los Reyes decided to remove the 15-year-old inmate from the cell, and deputies say he walked the teenager over to the day room and pushed him onto a table. He then walked the boy out towards the emergency door, and as Nenu was walking through, he kneed and then elbowed the inmate in the head.

In a report about the incident, Detention Deputy Nenu initially reported De Los Reyes delivered a "guided custodial touch" to the inmate, but then later admitted that was not an accurate account of what happened.

"It's flat out stupid to think that you're going to write a report saying this guy braced and tensed and all of these other things. And there were other lies in the report. If you take this report and you view the video and you match up this report and the video - it's a work of fiction," said Sheriff Gualtieri.

De Los Reyes failed to report the incident all together saying the inmate was not cooperative and his strikes was not excessive. He later admitted to using excessive force.

De Los Reyes, 51, resigned during the internal affairs investigation and turned himself in Monday morning for a battery charge. Nenu, 49, was given a 7-day suspension for failing to report the incident to supervision immediately and for misrepresenting the facts of the case.

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