Texas Gov. Abbott directs investigation into ‘illegal behavior’ at state’s Juvenile Justice Department


Texas Gov. Greg Abbott asked the Texas Rangers on Monday to investigate allegations that employees of the state’s Juvenile Justice Department had engaged in “illegal behavior” with youths.

Abbott called for an investigation in a letter to Col. Steven McCraw, director of the Texas Department of Public Safety. The governor did not elaborate on the nature of the alleged illegal behavior.

“The Office of the Inspector General for the Texas Juvenile Justice Department (TJJD) and the TJJD Independent Ombudsman have reported to prosecuting attorneys multiple allegations that certain TJJD staff members have recently engaged in potential illegal behavior,” Abbott said in the letter.

The governor asked the Texas Rangers to investigate the claims and submit a report on their findings “so that appropriate remedial action can be taken.” He added that he expects “full cooperation from TJJD leadership” during the inquiry.



The Texas Juvenile Justice Department did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

In a description on the TJJD’s website, executive director Camille Cain notes her department has “focused on safety and security to improve outcomes for youth while at the same time phasing resources to our probation departments, supporting models for youth with the most intense needs, and implementing trauma-informed corrections across the state.”