MONROE, La. (KTVE/KARD) – Juveniles considered to be high risk will now be expected to come to Swanson. The Swanson Correctional Center has a history of escapes and violence and some critics are worried they may not have enough resources to deal with those high-risk juveniles.
A new law requires the state department of public safety and corrections to place juveniles into a low, medium, and high-risk category. And those that are “high risk” have been chosen to come to a new $25 million facility at the Swanson correctional Center in Monroe.
A couple of Monroe locals say they fear for their safety.
“Honestly, as a man, because my wife is more vulnerable than I am, so yes, I feel threatened because if you hurt her that hurts me,” said Samuel Butler, a resident.
However, the office of juvenile justice says this facility will have better security to prevent more inmates from escaping.
The building features high exteriors to prevent juveniles from accessing the roof, concrete-reinforced walls, and a new key system.
“We don’t feel safe over here, and these kids constantly break out all the time,” said Danielle Bradley with Grandma Dee’s Kitchen, another local.
Danielle Bradley lives next door and says this new facility won’t make her feel any safer, considering there has been a history of escapes and violence at Swanson.
“I don’t think that’s a good idea, I don’t think so. We have elderly people, we have kids in the neighborhood because we’re literally right in the backyard of it. In the summer, when we sit out, the kids come out and use profane language, telling us to go in the house. We have security cameras and added motion lights, but it’s still not enough because it’s really dark.“
Some people also question whether Swanson will have enough resources to handle all the inmates.
“They could be right behind the house in the morning when we wake up to go to work, and I don’t like that,” explained Butler.
KTVE reached out to Swanson for comment on whether they did have enough resources and we have not heard back.
The facility is expected to be completed by 2023.