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      Former sheriff's deputy pleads guilty to civil rights conspiracy

      A former Lowndes County Sheriff's deputy has pleaded guilty to conspiring to use his law enforcement authority to unlawfully detain and take money from motorists.

      A former Lowndes County Sheriff's deputy has pleaded guilty to conspiring to use his law enforcement authority to unlawfully detain and take money from motorists.

      Jason Stacks admitted that he conspired with two civilians to subject Hispanic motorists to unlawful traffic stops. This was so that he could demand motorists to pay money in order to avoid arrest and/or deportation.

      On Aug. 16, 2013, Stacks, while acting as a LCSO Deputy, unlawfully detained at least four motorists. One of the motorists, identified in the plea documents by the initials T.C., was unlawfully detained by Stacks and then approached by Stacks' two Spanish-speaking co-conspirators, who explained to T.C. that he would be sent to jail or deported if he did not pay $500. When T.C. responded that he did not have $500 in his car, the co-conspirators drove T.C. to his residence and took $300 in cash from him. Stacks and the two co-conspirators divided the $300 among them.

      Today TMs guilty plea is another example of the zero tolerance the Department of Justice has for law enforcement officers who violate individuals TM civil rights, said U.S. Attorney Michael J. Moore for the Middle District of Georgia.

      This case has been investigated by the FBI, with assistance from the Lowndes County Sheriff TMs Office. The matter is being prosecuted by Special Litigation Counsel Forrest Christian and Trial Attorney Risa Berkower of the Civil Rights Division, with the assistance of the U.S. Attorney TMs Office for the Middle District of Georgia.

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