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District Attorney pushing to prevent more escapes from juvenile detention center

2 months 3 weeks 6 days ago Tuesday, November 28 2023 Nov 28, 2023 November 28, 2023 11:27 AM November 28, 2023 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE - The District Attorney's office is taking steps, preventing more break outs from the East Baton Rouge Parish Juvenile Detention Facility.

Within two weeks, two escapes have happened at the facility. On Saturday, 17-year-old David Atkins escaped for the second time, this time, with 17-year-old Willie Jackson.

Atkins and another detainee had broken free on Nov. 14 -- only to be recaptured two days later.

District Attorney Hillar Moore filed motions to move Atkins and Jerimiah Green, from the first escape, to the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison. He plans to file the same motion now for Jackson. 

Moore says public safety is the number one priority. 

"Hopefully they will turn themselves in without any other incident or anyone being harmed or injured," he said. 

In most cases, juveniles have to wait until they're 18 to move to the parish prison. However, if the motion passes, Moore says the Court can order juveniles charged with violent crimes to be transferred.

Atkins and Jackson are facing murder charges. Green, who was apart of the first escape, was charged with attempted second degree murder. 

In an interview with the WBRZ Investigative Unity, Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome said the escape Saturday happened when Atkins and Jackson forced open a security door, then climbed on the facility roof. It's part of the reason Moore says the escapees needs to be in a more secure facility. 

"I mean I'm sure that there are people out there that believe that he's a juvenile and should stay in juvenile detention," Moore said. "I understand that and respect their decision, but I think these actions show that first of all, he should not remain there, and second, at this point, based on the facility we just can't show the public that he will be safe there, and we will be safe."

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