According to the Orange County Corrections Department, an internal and criminal investigation into officers Jose Ayala-Martinez and and Alton Mercer was launched on June 7 after force was used on an inmate.
Video of the incident shows both officers going into the inmate's cell and striking him repeatedly.
According to a report issued by OCCD, both officers told Cpl. Jason Smith that the inmate jumped up in an aggressive manner in an attempt to hit one of them. The officers said they redirected the inmate to the bed and then to the floor before restraining him, the report said.
Smith said the story provided by Ayala-Martinez and Mercer was not consistent with the footage of the incident, the report said.
The inmate told investigators he was lying in bed when the officers asked him to hand them a cup, the report said. He said he "got smart" with the officers in response. The inmate said he jumped out of bed when the officers walked into his cell and the officers started to swing at him, threw him on the ground and stomped on his shoulder.
"Officer Ayala stated that after taking (the inmate) to the ground, he continued to resist by kicking and attempting to stand up requiring continued efforts on his and Officer Mercer’s part to restrain him," the report said.
"At the point immediately prior to Officer Ayala pushing (the inmate) on to the bunk, (the inmate's) right hand and arm was down by his side, and not raised or flexed as if to strike someone, as depicted in the video. Additionally, in Officer Ayala’s statement, he reports (the inmate) attempted to strike him and blocked it with his left hand, but this was not depicted on the video footage," the report said.
The report said the inmate told investigators he tried to get up from the floor to prevent being kicked in the face.
The nurse who treated the inmate said he complained of a pain to his eyes. She said she observed a small abrasion to the inmate's shoulder and a bump on his forehead.
The investigation concluded that Ayala-Martinez violated several codes of employee conduct.
Mercer resigned on June 23 and Ayala-Martinez was issued a termination letter on Friday. Ayala-Martinez can appeal the decision.
Both officers were also charged with battery.