St. Louis Public Radio News
10:11 am
Thu March 26, 2009

Anonymous source in ACLU prisons report comes forward

St. Louis, MO – An anonymous source who contributed to an American Civil Liberties Union report on alleged civil rights abuses in two St. Louis City jails came forward on Thursday.

Darious Young worked for the Division of Corrections for seventeen years. He says he and five other corrections officers mentioned in the report wished to remain anonymous out of fear of reprisals from the city.

In the full document, Young, who is listed as "CO-1", states that "violent physical abuse and beatings of inmates" by corrections officers had occurred on several occasions.

But when asked directly if he could confirm that, he seemed uncertain.

"I did not actually see any...lets see if I remember correctly, I'm trying to remember the one...I maybe came in on the end of them under my watch," said Young.

The one issue that he did affirm as having witnessed repeatedly was overcrowding in overnight holding cells.

"The way they had the dorms set up, it was a public safety hazard, it was a public safety nightmare that was just waiting to happen," notes Young.

In the document Young also mentioned false reports concerning beatings that had taken place.

Young says he was fired last year for taking a second job with the St. Louis Public Schools.

A city attorney questioned the credibility of the report and its timing, two weeks before the mayoral election.