The Justice Department (DOJ) has opened an investigation into five cases Texas Assistant Attorney General for Civil Rights Kristen Clark announced Wednesday that there have been reports of physical and sexual abuse of children by staff in juvenile detention facilities.
“Children who are often held in juvenile detention are subjected to violence and ill-treatment and are deprived of their constitutional rights,” Clark said in a virtual press briefing. “Government officials have a constitutional obligation to ensure the reasonable safety of children in these institutions.”
TEXAS GOV. ABBOTT MANAGES THE INVESTIGATION OF “NEGOROBI KHILOBAT” IN THE JUVENILE JUSTICE DEPARTMENT OF THE STATE.
Clark explained that the DOJ investigation will consider “whether there is a practice of harm as a result of overuse of chemical restrictions, overuse of insulation, or lack of mental health services.”
Acting U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery of Southern Texas, who attended the briefing, said: “Young people should not be deprived of violence, ill-treatment or basic services, even if they are incarcerated in a juvenile prison. and the task of ensuring that it is maintained under constitutional conditions. “
Ashley C. Hoff, a U.S. attorney in Western Texas, and Chad Mecham, a U.S. attorney in Northern Texas, were also present to express support for the DOJ investigation.
In July, Gov. Greg Abbott, R-Texas has asked Texas Rangers Police to investigate allegations that the state’s Juvenile Dertment staff committed “illegal acts” with youths.
The DOJ has also filed a lawsuit in recent weeks against a law repealing the latest law against Texas and a decision banning the transportation of illegal immigrants across the state.
Acesparks’s Thomas Barrabi contributed to the report.