On Monday evening, a vicious attack at the Augusta Youth Development Campus in Augusta, Georgia left a 19-year-old inmate dead. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is now looking into the matter.
The young man, Jade Holder, was in his jail cell when a group of inmates entered his cell and savagely beat him. Jade’s mother, Evangeline Holder, was initially told by jail officials that her son had sustained broken bones and some lacerations. When she arrived at the hospital, however, she learned that her son had died from his injuries. She was told by the Department of Juvenile Justice that five to eight inmates along with a guard have been arrested in connection with the attack.
Ms. Holder was also told by authorities that they do not know if her son left his cell door open or if a guard left the door open. Ms. Holder claims that Jade’s door was always locked and that she doesn’t believe her son would have left his cell door open. The GBI has initiated an investigation into Jade’s death to determine all of the parties that should be held responsible.
Our firm is currently investigating another serious incident at a Georgia YDC that caused an inmate to be paralyzed. It is important to insure that state detention facilities for juveniles are as safe as possible. Most of these kids are in custody for minor drug offenses and (as in this case) non-violent theft offenses. While they may deserve to serve some time for their conduct, they do not deserve to be brutally attacked and beaten. If the detention officers were aware of the threat of violence to these kids and deliberately ignored it, then they may be liable for their injuries.