(CBS) — The head of a prison watchdog group suggests a youth detention center in Southern Illinois is going overboard in handling some disciplinary cases among the teenagers there.

WBBM Political Editor Craig Dellimore reports.

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Jennifer Vollen-Katz, director of the John Howard Association, says several young people housed at the Illinois Youth Center in Harrisburg have found themselves charged and prosecuted by local prosecutors when they get into fights, or even minor scuffles with corrections officers.

Most of the young detainees are from Chicago and already are jailed for crimes. They might face disciplinary actions elsewhere for the fights at the detention center.

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Juvenile justice officials say few cases are referred by the Southern Illinois center itself, but individual corrections officers may ask prosecutors to take the cases.

 

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