A U.S. District Court judge yesterday sentenced a former deputy U.S. marshal to serve 90 days in prison for demanding and receiving $400 in bribes from two eviction service companies to help them carry out court-ordered evictions.

The deputy, Jacob O. Withers, 59, a 10-year veteran of the marshal's service, pleaded guilty in January to receiving the money from Boris A. Jackerson, owner of the Metro Eviction Co. in Cheverly, and Tracy H. Harding, owner of the Gremco Eviction Co. in Landover, in exchange for helping the companies by scheduling extra evictions for them.

Judge Thomas A. Flannery sentenced Withers, who resigned from the marshal's service after he pleaded guilty, to three months to two years in prison but suspended all but 90 days of the sentence. Flannery also fined Withers $1,000.

Withers is the first deputy to plead guilty in an investigation into alleged payoffs to a few deputy marshals, according to assistant U.S. Attorney Robert R. Chapman. Jackerson, Harding and Wilson Fisher, the owner of W & F Eviction Co. of Northeast Washington, have pleaded guilty to paying the bribes and have been placed on probation.

Flannery ordered Withers to turn himself in within 20 days to begin serving his sentence.