Thousands of cases at the troubled Texas Youth Commission should be reviewed to determine whether inmates should be released immediately because their sentences were either improperly extended by agency staff or cannot be justified, an adviser to Gov. Rick Perry has recommended, reports the Austin American-Statesman.
Jay Kimbrough, who has been assigned to investigate allegations that agency employees molested teenage inmates and covered it up, said 93 percent of all inmate sentences were extended and should be reviewed for fairness. There are about 4,700 inmates. He said 111 agency employees had felony arrests or convictions involving offenses that range from homicide to theft to writing bad checks and that an additional 437 had misdemeanor arrests or charges. The agency has about 4,600 employees. Two agency officials, a lawyer and a former chief inspector, were fired Friday and a superintendent was arrested on suspicion of making a false statement to a peace officer. Kimbrough also unveiled recommendations to slash guard-to-inmate ratios more than half, to 1-to-6, and begin offering counseling to young offenders who remain incarcerated or are on parole.