Company Running Youth Lockup says Workers Disciplined after Death of Osceola Teen

AUGUST 3, 2005 - Posted at 7:57 a.m. CDT

LITTLE ROCK, AR - The private firm that runs the state youth lockup at Alexander where a Mississippi County teenager died says three employees received reprimands and two top managers have lost their jobs.  Houston-based Cornell Companies Incorporated also said it had implemented an action plan that includes better orientation and training procedures for all staff.  The company said it also put into effect an organizational chart with clearly defined lines of authority, in response to the April death of 17-year-old LaKeisha Brown of Osceola.

The company said in a report last week that problems it found in an internal investigation did not correctly cause the girl's death at the Alexander Youth Services Center.  Cornell said executive managers reviewed the internal investigation as well as reports submitted by outside agencies in developing its plan.

Cornell conducted its investigation in June, two months after Brown died of a suspected blod clot to the lungs.  Brown had been at the state's largest juvenile lockup for nearly two years after being sent there for drug possession, rape and inciting a riot.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)