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D.C. DYRS manager due in court
Ward 8 case worker charged with releasing juvenile records
Question of the Day
A Ward 8 case manager with the D.C. Department of Youth Rehabilitation Services has been served with a notice of removal and is being criminally charged with "unlawful disclosure of juvenile records," according to documents obtained by The Washington Times.
Eric Davis is due in D.C. Superior Court on Tuesday to answer to the charges, which if proven could lead to a $250 fine and 90 days in jail. Documents provided to Mr. Davis to support the charges include emails between him and The Times from his DYRS account.
Mr. Davis and a lawyer for the American Federation of Government Employees Local 383, which led a multiunion vote of no confidence against DYRS Director Neil Stanley in 2011, had no comment.
Last year, Mr. Stanley stood before his staff, which is responsible for youth offenders, and delivered strong words for those who have criticized his leadership. He was reacting at the time to a story in The Times that reported that police were investigating whether he had been out with Jeffrey McInnis, former DYRS superintendent, on the night in 2011 that Mr. McInnis was shot by a youth under DYRS supervision at 4 a.m. — an incident Mr. Stanley failed to report to employees until questioned by a reporter nine days later.
"People seem interested in what I do after hours," said the visibly agitated Mr. Stanley, according to numerous employees who witnessed his remarks. "What I do is my business. I'm not scared of you.
"No weapon formed against me will prosper," he warned the group, adding that "We're going to do a full investigation of employees who leak confidential information, and actions will be taken."
Last month, Mr. Stanley made good on that promise.
In response to questions, a DYRS spokesman provided copies of D.C. laws and regulations and DYRS policies prohibiting disclosure of confidential information about youth offenders. In addition, the spokesman referred to "positive media coverage" about an unnamed DYRS youth who has successfully transitioned into society.
"When a youth's confidential information is made public, our agency's rehabilitative efforts are severely undermined, along with the opportunities for youth like 'Shawn' to have a new beginning," Mr. Stanley wrote in a Nov. 19 email to staff.
Asked whether Mayor Vincent C. Gray was aware that DYRS investigated its staff and prompted criminal charges against an employee, spokesman Pedro Ribeiro replied: "It's not a procedure I'm familiar with. But a violation of the law obligates an agency to file a criminal charge."
In response to questions about whether Mr. Stanley had acted in retaliation for dissent among the ranks, Mr. Ribeiro said the question "is ridiculous on its face," and hung up the phone.
In January 2012, The Times reported that 53 "high-medium risk" youths in DYRS custody had been killed or found guilty of killing someone else in the past five years.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
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