CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Investigation into Guards Breaking Juveniles' Bones

From authorities are investigating whether guards at state juvenile detention facilities broke the bones of 60 young offenders as a result of abusive tactics. The newly disclosed review comes amid spreading concerns about the treatment of teenage inmates.

The investigation is part of a criminal inquiry into the Texas Youth Commission, one of the nation's largest juvenile justice systems, with about 4,000 offenders. It was triggered by medical reports over five years showing inmates were treated for suspicious breaks, commonly the humerus, the long bone in the upper arm, according to Dr. Ben Raimer, who oversees commission health care services for the University of Texas Medical Branch.

Investigators suspect the arm injuries occurred when guards yanked offenders' arms upward while the limbs were shackled behind the youths' backs, said Jay Kimbrough, who has been appointed by Gov. Rick Perry to direct the state inquiry.

"There are enough of these injuries to cause us serious concern," Kimbrough said.

The review has grown out of a broader investigation of sexual abuse and physical assaults of inmates and other improper conduct by the staff. Rest of Article. . . [Mark Godsey]

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