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Augusta YDC ranks high in misconduct, altercations

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Through the first 10 months of this year the Augusta Youth Development Campus ranked second among Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice facilities in employee misconduct, contraband and youth-on-staff altercations.

The Augusta Youth Development Campus on Mike Padgett Highway in Augusta.  Michael Holahan/Staff
Michael Holahan/Staff
The Augusta Youth Development Campus on Mike Padgett Highway in Augusta.

Only the Eastman YDC surpassed Augusta in those categories among Georgia’s 26 DJJ facilities.

The facility on Mike Padgett Highway has been under scrutiny since Nov. 7 when 19-year-old Jade Holder, of Sylvester, Ga., was injured in his one-man cell in Unit 43 and died the following afternoon at Medical College of Georgia Hospital after being pronounced brain dead.

A youth at the facility -- Michael Jarod Everidge, 17, of Augusta -- was charged Nov. 10 with murder in connection with the death. Marlon McCreary Sr., a guard at the facility, was fired the same day, cited for a “failure to lock the doors to the rooms of the resident in Unit 43.”

“As a result of your conduct, residents were allowed to enter and exit the rooms of other residents at will and fatally assault a youth under the care and custody of the Department of Juvenile Justice,” according to McCreary’s termination letter, obtained by The Augusta Chronicle.

McCreary had been hired in July, his second stint at the facility, after being fired in 2008.

According to personnel records, he was terminated then after “refusal to accept (his) assigned post... and the unprofessional conduct (he) displayed when discussing the issue.”

In an appeal in 2008, McCreary explained he was trying to follow procedures when he did not accept his post because he did not have a radio to complete his duties.

Personnel records provided the newspaper included messages that fellow employees thought he had matured and could handle the job.

Heather Gates, another security employee, was suspended with pay Nov. 9 due to possible employee misconduct, according to department records. Capt. Victor Martin was also suspended with pay for possible employee misconduct the following day.

The Department of Juvenile Justice did not clarify if their suspensions were related to the incident in Unit 43.

Gov. Nathan Deal did announce Friday a leadership change at the Augusta YDC. According to a statement from the Governor’s Office, Gary Jones, chief of police in Sardis, Ga., will begin a special three-month assignment leading the facility on Monday.

Few details were provided about the assignment, except that Jones will report directly to Commissioner L. Gale Buckner, of the Department of Juvenile Justice. Jones would not discuss the new position with a reporter on Friday.

Buckner, who was appointed commissioner the same day as Holder’s death, was not in her office Friday to answer questions about the Augusta situation, according to her staff.

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation would also not discuss the case, citing the ongoing investigation into Holder’s death.

By the numbers


TOP 3 FACILITIES WITH EMPLOYEE MISCONDUCT

1. Eastman YDC - 117

2. Augusta YDC - 86

3. DeKalb RYDC - 69

TOP 3 FACILITIES WITH CONTRABAND

1. Eastman YDC - 161

2. Augusta YDC - 104

3. Muscogee YDC - 34

TOP 3 FACILITIES WITH YOUTH ON STAFF PHYSICAL ALTERCATIONS

1. Eastman YDC - 238

2. Augusta YDC - 65

3. Metro RYDC - 46

SOURCE: Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice

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yakirz
9
Points
yakirz 12/03/11 - 07:37 am
0
0
With YDC and prison, why not
Unpublished

With YDC and prison, why not put them in smaller cells by themselves throughout the system, then let everyone out for exercise in groups that don't know each other. By the time they can find something to fight about, they won't be around that person for weeks and it will have time to calm down.

yakirz
9
Points
yakirz 12/03/11 - 07:46 am
0
0
Every few months move them to
Unpublished

Every few months move them to a different place, and there shouldn't be a way for trouble to start.

Craig Spinks
817
Points
Craig Spinks 12/04/11 - 03:28 am
0
0
Who believes that

Who believes that self-reports are not under-reports?

avidreader
3104
Points
avidreader 12/04/11 - 09:32 am
0
0
It appears that problems with

It appears that problems with mismanagement are consistent at YDC Augusta. With all the bureaucracy of a state government, it is often difficult to determine where the buck stops. It's sad that it takes a tragic event to get a state employee fired.

Asitisinaug
3
Points
Asitisinaug 12/04/11 - 05:46 pm
0
0
Chief Gary Jones will take

Chief Gary Jones will take and methodical no nonsense approach to solving the problems at YDC. He has a big task ahead of him as he not only has to solve the problems with the youth but with the staff. He will implement the necessary policies to clean this place up the best that any one person can. His leadership skills combined with his will and desire to do what is right is exactly what this place needs.

JRC2024
8514
Points
JRC2024 12/05/11 - 10:18 am
0
0
I would think that when you

I would think that when you deal with the MISFITS of society that your patience can run short. I would also like to know did the institution with the lowest problems have less residents. The report does not say that so we do not know the precentages. Anyway I am glad they are where they cannot do harm to the public.

Chillen
17
Points
Chillen 12/05/11 - 10:44 am
0
0
I have a solution to the

I have a solution to the whole problem. Don't do the crime and you won't do the time.

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