REDWOOD CITY, Calif. – A Filipino inmate is accusing four San Francisco sheriff’s deputies of forcing him and other inmates to fight gladiator style for their own sadistic entertainment.
Ricardo Palikiko Garcia, an inmate at a facility in San Francisco, said he was forced to fight a 350-pound inmate by four sheriff’s deputies who placed bets on the fights. Garcia only weighs 150 pounds.
Garcia, who is in his twenties, says he was forced to fight twice and that the deputies were planning another fight.
In an interview with San Francisco Public Defender Jeff Adachi, Garcia said he feared for his life and suffered injuries from the fights.
Ricardo Palikiko Garcia’s full statement
“Um, I’ve been like basically witnessing and going through like, uh, deputies betting against me and forcing me to fight, and if I don’t fight, then he’s basically telling me that he was gonna beat me, up, cuff me, and tase me all at once,” Garcia said in the interview.
Public Defender Adachi says race may have played a role because the inmates who were forced to fight were all men of color.
Garcia and other inmates have been transferred to another facility in neighboring San Bruno. The four officers have been reassigned pending an internal investigation.
Garcia is in jail for armed robbery, burglary, and prescription fraud.