New safety measures taken after escape at Mahoning County JJC - News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

New safety measures taken after escape at Mahoning County JJC

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Some safety precautions will be taken on the heels of the escape of a 17-year-old from the Mahoning County Juvenile Justice Center.

Those measures will include all students having recreation inside temporarily as the court considers improving it's fencing.

Video obtained by 21 News captures the moment when 17-year-old Jeremy Britton scaled a 20-foot fence in the recreation yard to make his escape on Wednesday morning just before 8:30.

At the time the youth leader supervising was attempting to let all ten students who were outside back into the detention center.

Now that Britton's been captured and returned to the JJC his required recreation will be inside for his own safety and everyone else's.

Jason Lanzo is the Detention Director for the Mahoning County Juvenile Justice Center, "Mr. Britton's recreation will take place on his living unit.  He will not leave his floor.  When he is outside of his room, he will be wearing ankle restraints and that will not change.  He'll be walking in a large circle around the living unit.  He'll be made to walk for an hour and then he'll go back to passive recreation."

Magistrate Carla Baldwin makes it clear this is an isolated incident, but the facility is reviewing it's policies and procedures.

She says a review found no issues with how the staff responded to the escape.  But they are considering improving the facility's fencing.

"It's definitely up to code.  It's never had any issues with any reviews, but clearly since that incident occurred we just want to make sure that we have the best of everything," Magistrate Baldwin said.

Administrators say the JJC's track record on safety has been a good one but this most recent image leaves them not wanting to take any chances.

"At this time all of the students will have recreation inside until we look into improving the fence and look at other measures," Magistrate Baldwin said.

One positive note according to Baldwin the other nine students who witnessed Britton's escape stayed put and did the right thing.


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