Sep. 17—The Maine Division of Corrections will work with a nationwide coverage group on one other assessment of the state’s solely youth jail, an announcement that follows a string of violent incidents there and the departure of three prime officers.
Commissioner Randy Liberty stated in a information launch Friday that an investigation is underway into 5 altercations in six weeks between incarcerated youngsters and workers at Lengthy Creek Youth Improvement Heart in South Portland.
“Each the underlying incidents and the response of workers to these incidents are the topic of ongoing investigation by the Division of Corrections and Cumberland County District Legal professional’s Workplace,” Liberty stated. “Any actions taken by workers that aren’t according to the Division’s protocols is not going to be tolerated.”
He stated the division will work with the nationwide Heart for Youngsters’s Regulation and Coverage to conduct a “complete departmental assessment of the practices, polices and operations on the facility.” That group has revealed two different assessments within the final 4 years that discovered evident issues in Maine’s juvenile justice system.
Different actions together with including extra habits well being clinicians who concentrate on working with juveniles with aggressive tendencies and retraining workers on the administration of mass disturbances and use of power.
Liberty additionally confirmed the resignations of Caroline Raymond, the superintendent of Lengthy Creek, and Colin O’Neill, the affiliate commissioner who was in control of juvenile companies.
Nevertheless, the announcement didn’t embody all of the specifics Liberty shared with lawmakers earlier this week. The commissioner briefed a small group of legislators on the scenario at Lengthy Creek on Wednesday, and a number of other of them relayed that info to the Portland Press Herald. In addition they plan to carry a listening to to query Liberty in public in regards to the latest developments.
Liberty described the actions of incarcerated youth throughout these altercations, together with throwing furnishings via home windows, assaulting others and flooding a residence corridor. He stated workers “intervened to revive order” when their efforts at deescalation have been unsuccessful, however the assertion didn’t describe their actions intimately.
However Rep. Charlotte Warren, a Hallowell Democrat, stated he advised lawmakers that “armored workers” used pepper spray and headlocks. And Incapacity Rights Maine just lately wrote to the division about the usage of a harmful tactic known as a inclined restraint, when an individual is held face down on the bottom.
This story will probably be up to date.