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Mississippi sheriff´s deputies fired after Black men allege torture

Washington, Jun 29 (Prensa Latina) A Mississippi sheriff's department in Rankin County said it had fired multiple deputies after two Black men accused them in a federal lawsuit of beating, torturing and sexually violating them.

The two men, Michael Jenkins, 32, and Eddie Parker, 35, filed the $400 million federal lawsuit against the Rankin County Sheriff´s Department.

The lawsuit describes the deputies’ alleged actions as “one of the worst and most bizarre incidents of police misconduct in United States history,” according to NBC News.

Jenkins and Parker, who lived together at the time of the alleged assault, claimed in the federal lawsuit that deputies entered their home without cause or warning.

The deputies beat, waterboarded, stunned, sexually violated and attacked them with racial slurs, the men say in the lawsuit.

The lawsuit alleges that the officers lobbed race-based insults at the men and angrily accused them of dating white women. They allegedly handcuffed and beat the men before they shot them with Tasers 20 to 30 times “in a sadistic contest with each other as to which Taser would be most effective when fired against these two victims,” according to court documents.

The officers then put the two men on their backs and poured water on their faces in an effort to waterboard them, the lawsuit claims, before they sexually assaulted them with a sex toy.

The evening ended when an officer put a gun in Jenkins’ mouth while he was handcuffed, according to the lawsuit. The gunshot allegedly shattered Jenkins’ jaw and severely lacerated his tongue. Several of Jenkins’ arteries were severely damaged, and he almost died, it says. He was then left alone to seek aid, the court documents allege.

While the sheriff’s department would not say how many deputies were relieved, a spokesperson said all those at the scene were fired after the internal investigation.

Meanwhile, FBI, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Southern Mississippi reported that they have opened a civil rights investigation.

The incident comes amid a fierce debate about officers’ excessive use of force and about impunity for their actions, with particular scrutiny of attacks against blacks.