Re: [ward5] Teens [from an area in Benning Terrace] charged in killings were in DYRS’ hands Gang members held in ‘09 shootouts (Wash. Times)
- DYRS has been troubled for years and had a long-standing policy of failing to adequately cooperate with MPD and the community. Typically, after detained youth are processed and fed they start trading information about recent and past homicides and beefs with other crews and gang members; no one from MPD is ever notified or consulted for assistance. The agency lacked standard operating protocols in several areas. Under the former director Vincent Schiraldi things worsened. Mr. Schiraldi brought in his friends, some of whom were previously sanctioned for substance abuse, boundary violations and had restricted license stipulations. Add to the mix low staff morale, a staff member fighting with detained youth, a medical staffer regularly showing up for work intoxicated and other misdeeds. What you get is a troubled agency without the internal resources to effectively deal with detained youth.
Finally, Washington Post columnist Colbert King has sounded the alarm regarding DYRS and troubled juveniles on numerous occasions. Others have also raised concerns about the state of affairs at DYRS, myself included. It is imperative that we fix DYRS now. With a looming 320 million dollar budget deficit the public safety will be further eroded by a dysfunctional juvenile facility; we will have less resources available to turn DYRS around. Even though our overall crime rate is down, juveniles continue to drive the crime rate in DC.
Sent on the Sprint® Now Network from my BlackBerry®From: WKPW3@...Sender: email@example.comDate: Tue, 22 Mar 2011 10:31:21 -0400To: <firstname.lastname@example.org>ReplyTo: email@example.comSubject: [ward5] Teens [from an area in Benning Terrace] charged in killings w ere in DYRS’ hands Gang members held in ‘09 shootouts (Wash. Times)http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/mar/21/teens-charged-in-killings-were-in-dyrs-hands/
Teens charged in killings were in DYRS’ hands
Gang members held in ‘09 shootoutsFour teens who were among 13 people charged as members of warring Southeast street gangs that ambushed and killed their rivals were at the time of their crimes in the custody of the city's juvenile justice agency, The Washington Times has learned.Prosecutors announced last week they had charged four members of the "Avenue," a gang that took its name from an area in Benning Terrace west of 46th Street Southeast, with conspiring to assault members of the "Circle," whose members took their name from a cul-de-sac in the neighborhood. Nine members of the Circle also were charged. The charges include conspiracy, assault with intent to kill, gun possession and murder.Lamonte Henson, known as Tiggy, 19; Marcellus McCray, 17, known as Mateo; Raymond Davis, 18, known as Soldier Boy; and Curtis Faison, 19, were in the custody of the District's troubled Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services (DYRS), according to sources at the agency.The sources also said that Antonio Fortson, 19, known as T.O.; and Anthony Hebron, 17, known as Peanut, were in the process of being committed to the agency's custody.Authorities say the teens were part of gangs responsible for several shootouts since July 2009.DYRS officials did not return calls for comment.The tit-for-tat violence escalated April 10, 2010, when authorities say Faison fatally shot Melvin White, 27. Authorities say Fortson and another man associated with the Circle fired several shots at individuals they associated with the Avenue.On May 14, Davis and two other members of the Avenue shot a rival gang member, according to the charging papers.Just more than two weeks later, a firefight between the two groups on May 30 that involved McCray, Henson, Davis, Fortson and Hebron, among others, resulted in the death of Antwan Buckner, 32.The charges were announced Wednesday, the same day Mayor Vincent C. Gray nominated interim DYRS Director Neil Stanley to the job on a permanent basis. Mr. Stanley had served as the agency's general counsel since September 2008.Mr. Stanley said during the news conference announcing his nomination that the agency was "very committed to public safety" in outlining some of the progress DYRS has made."The mayor has made very clear that his priority for this agency is community supervision," he said."And so we have created a high-intensity unit that is looking very specifically at young people who are serious offenders, repeat offenders, and we're tracking in real time what is going on."In a recent series of articles, The Times explored youth violence in the District and found that DYRS has been plagued by a pattern of crimes committed by and against youths under the agency's supervision.Mr. Gray at the time said the agency was in need of an "overhaul."