Experts to overhaul youth prison
Gov. Linda Lingle said yesterday that she does not know if anyone in her administration would be disciplined for poor conditions at the Hawaii Youth Correctional Facility that led to an agreement to stave off federal oversight.
Lingle also told reporters yesterday that she does not know how much it will cost the state to implement the agreement for the Kailua youth facility, which the U.S. Justice Department has described as in a "state of chaos."
Lingle said her administration brought in experts in youth incarceration who will spend the next two years implementing changes.
"This will bring a turnaround to a very troubled facility," the governor said.
She referred to U.S. District Judge Michael Seabright's ruling that there has not been any training at the Kailua youth facility since the 1980s.
In his 77-page ruling, Seabright said there was evidence to support allegations that verbal, sexual and physical abuse and harassment of inmates indicates that the problems at the youth facility were not addressed.
Whether anyone in supervisory positions is disciplined depends on what charges are made, Lingle said.
The governor said that since taking office two years ago, her administration has prosecuted people who worked at the Kailua youth facility.
The governor has removed two administrators and pursued criminal convictions against guards.
The agreement comes six months after a Justice Department report cited inadequate policies and procedures, staffing shortages and deficient training for the guards.