Home US Federal judge won’t block plans to transport youth offenders to Angola

Federal judge won’t block plans to transport youth offenders to Angola

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Baton Rouge, La. (WAFB) – A federal judge will not block plans to transfer two dozen detained teenagers to Angola, according to a ruling issued Friday, September 23.

In a 64-page ruling, U.S. District Judge Shelley Dick said she was not a fan of seeing young prisoners transferred to Angola. However, he concluded that there was no better alternative.

“The prospect of a teenager going to bed at night in a locked room behind razor wire surrounded by swamps in Angola is disturbing,” Dick wrote. “Some of the children in OJJ’s care are so traumatized and emotionally and psychologically disturbed that OJJ is practically unable to provide a safe care environment.

Detainees shall be kept more than one mile away from any adult inmates and shall be segregated from them at all times.

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Friday’s ruling was in response to a civil lawsuit filed in Baton Rouge on behalf of a juvenile inmate named Alex A. The suit sought a temporary restraining order against Edwards, OJJ Deputy Secretary Bill Sommers and Department of Public Safety and Corrections Secretary James LeBlanc. An injunction against the plan and blocking it permanently.

Youth justice advocates are holding a news conference on the steps of the Louisiana State Capitol to demand more than a break in transitioning youth violence.

Gov. John Bel Edwards introduced the relocation plan in July as an effort to end violence at the Bridge City Detention Center.

At this time, there is no specific date for when the moves could happen.

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