Protesters Demand Transparency as Sheriff Jones Addresses Board of Supervisors

SACRAMENTO -- Amid a vocal crowd, Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones addressed the Board of Supervisors Tuesday.

"I've been described as rogue, authoritarian, a dictator, a mini Trump. Oh, yeah, OK a racist, we'll add that too. All because I won't voluntarily allow independent oversight of the sheriff's department," Jones said at the podium, responding to a shouting crowd. "This seems strange to me. No other agency in the region, not the Sacramento Police Department, no other sheriff's department in the state, has oversight in the type that's being advocated for here."

The controversy surrounding oversight began in August, after the release of Inspector General Rick Braziel’s report on the May 2017 deputy-involved fatal shooting of Mikel McIntyre. Braziel’s report found the number of bullets deputies fired at McIntyre was excessive.

On Tuesday, the sheriff reminded the crowd that he first asked the Board of Supervisors to bring the position of inspector general back in the first place.

"It was I who came to the board several years ago and asked for the reinstatement of the inspector general position," he said. "And I still truly believe the inspector general, if properly chosen, can enhance greatly the sheriff's department."

Jones was upset that the Inspector General’s report was released before the District Attorney’s report and felt that Braziel put his own political spin on it.

In response, Jones locked Braziel out of the sheriff’s department building and blocked him from accessing department records.

The last time the board took up this subject Supervisor Phil Serna accused Jones of trying to strip the inspector general position of its oversight abilities.

Serna addressed what will come out of Tuesday's meeting.

"There's no action other than the prospect of some more specified direction to staff following ... We're going to hear from the community certainly and we're going to hear questions from the board,"  Serna told FOX40. "But it's really to hone and refine an understanding what the options are to this board."

Protesters, Supporters React to Jones' Stance

Inside the meeting, there were some tense moments as Jones took the podium.

Sheriff Jones faced applause, boos and cheers during his remarks to the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors. Some often shouted out, interrupting him.

At one point, shouting even spilled out into the lobby as audience members watching disagreed.

Before the meeting, several religious groups called on the county to allow the inspector general access to the sheriff’s department for more transparency and accountability.

"When you don’t want to be held accountable it only infers that maybe you are hiding something," said Allegra Taylor with Sacramento ACT.

Specifically, many were demanding more answers about what happened to 36-year-old Marshall Miles, an inmate who died after complaining about breathing shortly after a struggle with deputies inside the Sacramento County Main Jail.

"Why didn’t they decide to put him in a hospital instead of a jail cell?" said Berry Accius with Voice of the Youth.

However, during public comment others expressed their support of Sheriff Jones and agreed an inspector general is not needed.

"I support Scott Jones. I voted for Scott Jones," said one man who took the podium. "I voted for our DA. I believe that oversight and consideration  of any problems that the sheriff’s department may have should be to the DA's office."