Lawsuit claims Hamilton County Juvenile detention center violate - Cincinnati News, FOX19-WXIX TV

Lawsuit claims Hamilton County Juvenile detention center violates rights of minors

Hamilton County juvenile center (Hamilton County website) Hamilton County juvenile center (Hamilton County website)
CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) -

A class action lawsuit has been filed against Hamilton County leaders alleging the juvenile court's practice of arresting and detaining minors in its detention center is violating the children's constitutional rights. 

Specifically, the lawsuit says, the juvenile court is issuing or authorizing arrest warrants without probable cause, detaining or authorizing the repeated jailing of children without timely hearings to determine whether there is cause to detain them and creating disproportionate impact on African-American children. 

This comes after a 17-year-old African-American male was allegedly arrested on Sept. 12 and held until Oct. 10, without probable cause. The lawsuit says that the unidentified male was arrested and charged with aggravated robbery. He was ordered to remain at the juvenile detention center until Sept. 24. The prosecutor then recommended that the case be sent to adult court, continuing the probable cause hearing to Oct. 6. According to the lawsuit, that hearing never occurred. On Oct. 10 the juvenile finally went to court, at which time the case was dismissed. He was released that day, the lawsuit says. 

Because of that particular case, the plaintiffs ask that the detention center create a policy that 1) prohibits the issuance of an arrest warrant without probable cause and 2) prohibits the detention of a youth for more than 48 hours without having a probable cause hearing or finding probable cause. 

The suit was filed by the 17-year-old's legal guardian as well as the legal guardian of a 16-year-old who was detained in the detention center for more than a month. 

This story made national news this week when the Huffington Post published a story on the lawsuit.

On Friday, there will be a rally in front of the Hamilton County Courthouse regarding this case as well as other national issues, led by Bishop Bobby Hilton. 

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