Sheriff Ackal indicted on new inmate beating charges Superseding indictment claims Iberia Parish sheriff and other officials violated inmates’ civil rights.

Iberia Parish Sheriff Louis Ackal

Iberia Parish Sheriff Louis Ackal, Lt. Col. Gerald Savoy and former Capt. Mark Frederick were charged in a superseding indictment with civil rights violations in the alleged beatings of two men.

Announced Thursday by Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General Vanita Gupta, head of the Department of Justice’s Civil Rights Division, and U.S. Attorney Stephanie A. Finley, the superseding indictment charges Ackal with one count of conspiracy against rights for conspiring in the spring of 2014 to assault a man who had been arrested on battery charges for allegedly assaulting one of Ackal’s relatives. The superseding indictment also charges Savoy and Frederick with one count of deprivation of rights under color of law for allegedly assaulting another man, a pre-trial detainee at the Iberia Parish Jail (IPJ) in September of 2011. Ackal and Savoy had previously been charged related to beatings of pre-trial detainees at the IPJ on April 29, 2011.

Nine former Iberia Parish Sheriff’s Office employees previously entered guilty pleas in related cases before U.S. District Judge Patricia Minaldi of the Western District of Louisiana. The nine officers are former IPJ Warden Wesley Hayes, former IPJ Assistant Warden Jesse Hayes, former Lt. Bret Broussard of the Narcotics Unit, former narcotics agent Wade Bergeron, former narcotics agent Jason Comeaux, former narcotics agent David Hines, former narcotics agent Byron Benjamin Lassalle and former K-9 handlers Robert Burns and Jeremy Hatley.

If convicted, Ackal, Savoy and Frederick each face a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison for each of the civil rights violations, as well as a potential $250,000 fine for each count.

Read more in Friday's Advocate.