Charges filed against juvenile rioters

PARKERSBURG – Six juveniles allegedly involved in a major disturbance at the Lorrie Yeager Jr. Juvenile Center in Parkersburg on Feb. 18 have been charged by the Wood County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.

West Virginia State Police Lt. Michael Baylous, public information officer, said Wednesday the riot resulted in property damage of more than $40,000.

According to a press release from the West Virginia State Police, during a recreational period in the detention facility’s dayroom, two male residents began physically assaulting correctional officers, staff and other residents.

Police said the two males enticed two other male residents to join them in assaulting staff members with tables, chairs and thrown items while destroying property.

Correctional officers and staff members quickly moved the other juvenile residents to a safe, secure location, officials said. However, two female residents did not comply and chose to participate in the disturbance, officials said.

Police did not release the names of the juveniles allegedly involved.

The juveniles were locked in the dayroom, where they damaged glass windows, sprinkler heads, a large flat-screen television and other property. They broke into an adjoining laundry room and three offices, destroying property in them and made weapons using scissors and metal rods from a foosball table, which they threatened to use if correctional officers entered the dayroom, police said.

The four male residents attempted to escape by ramming a door with a folded ping-pong table, police said.

Correctional officers entered the dayroom in riot gear and detained all six residents without incident. An investigation was conducted by the West Virginia State Police and a completed report was forwarded to the Wood County Prosecuting Attorney’s office.

Police said the four juvenile males were charged in Wood County Circuit Court with destruction of a building by rioters, felony destruction of property, attempted escape, possession of a weapon by an inmate at a juvenile detention center.

The two female residents were charged with destruction of a building by rioters and felony destruction of property.

Wood County Prosecutor Jason Wharton did not return calls seeking comment.