Accused jailhouse ‘Fight Club’ deputies surrender

Three former and current San Francisco sheriff’s deputies charged with forcing jail inmates to fight each other will be arraigned next week, according to the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office.

District Attorney George Gascon on Tuesday announced felony and misdemeanor charges against the three deputies in connection with the alleged jailhouse “fight club” incidents, which occurred in March last year.

Former Deputy Scott Neu, who allegedly forced inmates Ricardo Palakiko-Garcia and Stanley Harris to fight each other in the county jail at 850 Bryant St. by threatening to mace or tase them or revoke privileges, has been charged with eight felonies and nine misdemeanors.

Current Deputy Eugene Jones, who allegedly participated in forcing the inmates to fight on one occasion, has been charged with two felonies and two misdemeanors. Deputy Clifford Chiba, who was allegedly present during a match and failed to report it, faces three misdemeanor counts.

The allegations against the deputies came to light last March when Garcia’s family contacted the public defender’s office for help, and were investigated with the help of the FBI.

Prosecutors Wednesday said the three surrendered into custody Tuesday afternoon. Neu was released on $187,000 bail and Jones on $39,000 bail, while Chiba was cited and released.

Arraignment is scheduled for next week.

Neu, who was also the subject of a 2006 lawsuit alleging sexual assault against an inmate, is no longer employed by the sheriff’s department.

Jones has been placed on administrative leave following the filing of felony charges and Chiba is working in a position that does not involve contact with inmates, according to the department.