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OAKLAND – California Attorney General Rob Bonta today issued a statement applauding a court ruling granting the California Department of Justice’s motion to enforce a 2021 stipulated judgment against the Los Angeles County Probation Department, to remedy illegal and unsafe conditions of confinement at its two juvenile halls. The court found that Los Angeles County has not complied with judgment provisions related to timely and adequate medical care, adequate staffing, transportation to education, compensatory education, outdoor recreation, camera installation at Barry J. Nidorf Juvenile Hall, and creation of a positive behavior management plan. The court further ordered Los Angeles County to work with the Attorney General’s office and the judgment’s monitor to identify within 30 days new deadlines to comply with the provisions of the stipulated judgment. The court’s tentative ruling also stated that, if the new compliance deadlines are not met, the court would be “inclined to issue an order to show cause as to why sanctions should not be issued.”
“Today’s court ruling is a necessary step forward to rehabilitating a broken system that must be reformed,” said Attorney General Bonta. “The reports of a young life senselessly lost and young people endangered while in custody are horrifying and unacceptable. Our youth are our future—we are responsible for protecting them and ensuring they receive educational, health, and supportive services necessary to stop the cycle of incarceration. The California Department of Justice will continue to work to ensure that our institutions provide justice-involved youth with every opportunity for rehabilitation, growth, and healing.”
In April, California Department of Justice filed a motion to enforce the 2021 stipulated judgement against Los Angeles County. It has been over two years since the stipulated judgment was entered, yet Los Angeles County has failed to comply with its terms. Today’s ruling provides accountability and court oversight to help ensure implementation of necessary reforms that will improve conditions and safety within the Los Angeles County juvenile justice system.
Attorney General Bonta is committed to protecting the rights of youth in California and across the country. The Attorney General encourages those with information regarding suspected practices violating state or federal law involving children to report them to the DOJ’s Bureau of Children’s Justice through the online complaint form located at https://oag.ca.gov/bcj/complaint.