1 fired, 1 suspended from Augusta YDC - WFXG FOX 54 - News Now

1 fired, 1 suspended from Augusta YDC


The Department of Juvenile Justice has fired Lieutenant Ricky Smiley and suspended Interim Director Melvin Womble of Augusta's Youth Development Campus.

The DJJ held a news conference Wednesday evening regarding on-going investigations at the YDC. The Georgia Bureau of Investigation is now involved after YDC officials failed to follow protocol.

The GBI was asked to step in after a 17-year old inmate's jaw was broken when he was attacked by another inmate. The violent incident was never reported.

"It's another example of the unacceptable level of safety and security deficiencies the public has come to associate with the management of the Augusta Youth Development Campus," said DJJ Spokesman Jim Shuler.  

 Lieutenant Ricky Smiley is also off the job for employee negligence.

An internal investigation revealed Smiley failed to follow-up on his supervisory responsibilities after a 15-year old received minor injuries when he was assaulted in December by an inmate. 

"This performance failure may have hindered the ability of other key staff members to prevent the assault and subsequent injury," said Spokesman Shuler.  

This is not the first time Womble and Smiley have faced disciplinary actions.

Back in October, FOX54 reported Interim Director Womble was put on probation and Smiley took a voluntary demotion from captain to lieutenant.

But despite the series of negligent reports, Spokesman Shuler says the DJJ plans to move forward in a positive direction.

"We will continue to enforce what measures are necessary to ensure the safety and security of the youth in our custody at the YDC."

DJJ Regional Administrator Ronnie Richardson will step in until a new director is announced in the next couple of weeks.

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