The most violent prisons in Ohio are those holding teenagers, not maximum-security facilities or Death Row, reports the Columbus Dispatch. There were more assaults than inmates last year in Ohio's youth prisons, where the rate of assaults per inmate was 48 times greater than in adult lockups. Still, a court-appointed monitor said the facilities’ conditions are improving and that in certain areas, the state Department of Youth Services serves as a model for the nation.
Several staff members told the Dispatch said there isn't enough discipline in the youth prisons and talked of dangerous environments for both staff and teens. “We need help. And we can't get it because everybody is scared to tell, because they don't want to lose their job; but I've got to tell somebody,” said one youth specialist. “Sooner or later, somebody is going to get killed.” Ohio juvenile correctional facilities held 680 youth in 2011, when there were 1,604 assaults. Adult prisons recorded 2,486 assaults last year, with a 50,000 population.