2 of 5 Deputies Plead Guilty in Suspect Beating

Two of five north Florida deputies suspended after the beating of a suspect have pleaded guilty in federal court, a local media report says.

In a deal with prosecutors, James Amidei and Trevor Fitzgerald, both 32, each pleaded guilty Wednesday to one count of deprivation of rights under color of law, The Ocala-Star-Banner reported. It said the charge is punishable by up to 10 years in prison, but sentencing guidelines will take their cooperation with the government into account.

U.S. Attorney A. Lee Bentley III says Amidei stood by and watched a suspect in a drug investigation being beaten last August, and Fitzgerald sat on the suspect's legs, the report says.

All five deputies were suspended without pay when video of the arrest surfaced from a surveillance camera.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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