DCF Details Results of Investigation Into Juvenile Detention Centers

The Department of Children and Families’ special investigative unit spoke Thursday after looking into potential misconduct allegations by staff members at both the Hartford and Bridgeport juvenile detention centers.

The move comes after 40-year-old Marquis Marquez was arrested for alleged sexual assault involving a teenage girl at the Hartford Juvenile Detention Center.

“What I’ve read has really disturbed me because we are talking about young women,” Representative Diana Urban (D-43) said.

The allegations include additional reports of alleged sexual assault, 3,500 breaches of confidentiality by one staff member, human trafficking, and concerns about staff supervision, and failure to report mandated incidents.

“I’m outraged, I’m disappointed and frankly I’m saddened by the allegations,” Judge Patrick Carroll said.

Connecticut Judicial Branch Judge Patrick Carroll explained the results of an independent review of the centers conducted since Marquez’s arrest and recommendations including staff training, reporting and the use of cameras at the centers.

“That is a very serious allegation and it goes way beyond an isolated incident,” Senator Len Suzio (R-13) said.

Also in question, the overall culture within the juvenile detention centers. Suzio asked if a prevailing institutional problem resides within the facilities.

“They are bad acts being done by a few people no sense in denying that,” Carroll said.

The Office of Child Advocate also conducted an internal review and presented recommendations. The additional allegations brought up Thursday are still under investigation by DCF.

Marquez is free on bond, he is expected in court next month.

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