UPDATE: 4 teens escape TN juvenile detention center; employees to be fired

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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — A report detailing how four teenagers escaped a Tennessee juvenile detention facility calls for firing three employees.

The Tennessean reports a series of policy violations allowed the youth to escape Saturday night. They were still at large Tuesday. Metro Nashville police have said they should be considered dangerous.

The report was compiled by Youth Opportunity, the contractor managing the facility. It says employees allowed the youths out of their cells after bedtime and then left them unsupervised.

The teens got onto an elevator that was improperly left open. Then they tricked the elevator operator into sending them to an unsecured floor. Finally, staff did not immediately call 911.

The report says three employees will be fired. A fourth will receive a three-day suspension.


Information from: The Tennessean, http://www.tennessean.com

UPDATE (12/2):

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Several staff members at a juvenile detention center in Tennessee have been placed on leave while a court reviews the escape of four teenagers.

News outlets report Davidson County Juvenile Court Administrator Kathryn Sinback said in a statement Monday that “critical oversights” by multiple staff members at the Nashville center allowed the escape to happen Saturday night.

Two of the teens, ages 16 and 17, are charged in separate slayings. One death involved Nashville musician Kyle Yorlets, who was found dead in February. The other two escapees, ages 15 and 17, face armed robbery charges.

Police said the four escapees should be considered dangerous.

Sinback said a supervisor asked the four to clean an area. Sinback said the supervisor left to check on a fight in another part of the building, and the four were left unsupervised.

She said the teens got on an elevator that had been “left ajar” and “were then able to convince a staff member” to send the elevator to the unsecured basement.

“Upon exiting the elevator in the basement, the youth were able to enter a public area of Juvenile Court and run out the front door of the Juvenile Justice Center,” Sinback said.

The contractor that runs the facility, Youth Opportunity Investments, took several measures to improve security, including limiting elevator access to staff only, Sinback said.

The supervisor on duty notified the facility director that the youth were missing at 9:57 p.m. and drove around looking for the teens before alerting police some 25 minutes later.


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Police in Tennessee were searching Sunday for four teenagers who escaped from a juvenile detention center in Nashville. One of the escapees is a suspect in the February slaying of a rock band’s frontman.

The teens broke out of the downtown facility Saturday night and are believed to be armed and dangerous, the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department said in a news release.

The statement said two of the teens, ages 16 and 17, were charged in separate slayings that occurred earlier this year. One of the killings involved Nashville musician Kyle Yorlets, who was found shot to death outside his home in February. The other two escapees, ages 15 and 17, were facing armed robbery charges.

Police said the teens were on a work detail when their staff supervisor left to respond to a fight elsewhere at the facility. The teens then got onto an elevator to the ground floor and went through several doors to reach an exit. More than a half-hour elapsed before police were notified of the escape.

Police initially said the teens were reportedly seen at a gas station early Sunday in Clarksville, which is about 47 miles (76 kilometers) northwest of Nashville. But after a juvenile crime task force officer reviewed security video, it was determined the people in the video weren’t the fugitives.

Yorlets, the frontman for the rock band Carverton, was fatally shot Feb. 7 and police charged three girls and two boys with criminal homicide. Police said the youths were in a stolen pickup truck in an alley behind Yorlets’ home when they spotted him outside. They are accused of stealing his wallet, demanding the keys to his vehicle and shooting him when he refused.

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