The Ottumwa Courier

AP Iowa

September 23, 2013

Iowa conceals troubling incidents at juvenile home

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Some troubling incidents at the Iowa juvenile home are being concealed in records state officials release to the public, according to a newspaper report.

The Des Moines Register reports (http://dmreg.co/16jzW9K ) the Iowa attorney general's office tried to electronically black out details of abuse allegations, illegal restraints and other problems at the home in Toledo.

The newspaper discovered the details of what happened after copying and pasting the records into another file.

Register Publisher Rick Green says officials went too far because the hidden information helps show how the home was run and how kids were treated.

"Iowans expect and deserve full transparency from their state government, especially when public information casts the performance of state agencies or their employees in a questionable light," Green said. "The disclosures here raise an important question: Who is the attorney general's office trying to protect?

The Attorney General's spokesman Geoff Greenwood says the information was blacked out because it revealed details of individual cases, and state law protects children's privacy.

"Confidentiality under Iowa law extends beyond the name of the child," Greenwood said. "It extends to the services provided to the child, the circumstances of the child, and medical and psychiatric information about the child."

The home houses, treats and educates youths with serious behavioral problems. The federally funded group Disability Rights Iowa has been investigating allegations about the home's treatment of children, including small, isolation rooms where some children have been held for weeks and months.

The newspaper did not identify individual children in the new records.

The newly disclosed incidents include a girl being physically restrained by a juvenile home staffer and the home's staff withholding court-ordered substance abuse treatment.

On July 27, a girl who was sitting on her bed and reading refused to go to a seclusion room, so workers took her blankets away and then physically restrained her after the girl became aggressive. Then the girl was placed in a seclusion room.

Text Only
AP Iowa
  • Southeast Iowa's Lake Darling State Park reopens BRIGHTON, Iowa (AP) — Lake Darling State Park has reopened after around six years of restoration work in southeast Iowa's Washington County. The $16 million project began in 2008 and included draining the 300-acre lake and replacing a dam. The park n

    July 25, 2014

  • University of Iowa bans restroom videos suspect IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — University of Iowa police have identified a university employee as the person suspected of placing a video camera on the floor of a restroom and recording scenes there. The camera was found June 4 in the University Capitol Cent

    July 25, 2014

  • Iowa panel sued for rejecting Cedar Rapids casino CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — Former Linn County Attorney Eugene Kopecky has sued the Iowa Racing Gaming Commission over its rejection of the proposed Cedar Rapids casino. Kopecky says he wants a court to force the commission to reconsider its decision a

    July 25, 2014

  • Manure odor biofilters topic of Iowa conference AMES, Iowa (AP) — The latest technology designed to reduce the odor from hog manure will be the focus of a conference next month at Iowa State University. The Biofilter Conference on Aug. 20 is aimed at producers and managers of animal feeding operat

    July 25, 2014

  • Northwest Iowa man dies in hay bale accident WESTFIELD, Iowa (AP) — A northwest Iowa man has died after being hit with a hay bale. The Le Mars Daily Sentinel reports (http://bit.ly/1lyRu37 ) 76-year-old Barry E. Knapp, of Westfield, died Tuesday while stacking hay bales. The Plymouth County She

    July 24, 2014

  • Hearing set for Iowan held as deaths case witness AKRON, Iowa (AP) — A detention hearing has been scheduled Aug. 4 for a 44-year-old man held as a material witness in the deaths of an elderly couple. The man has been held since he was taken into custody in La Crosse, Wisconsin, on July 10, the day a

    July 24, 2014

  • Five charged after eastern Iowa police chase SOLON, Iowa (AP) — A two-county police chase in eastern Iowa has ended in the backyard of a house in Solon. Deputies say two teenagers and three men from Cedar Rapids were taken into custody Wednesday night. They face a variety of charges. The five w

    July 24, 2014

  • 2012 fatal boat pilot offers insurance money DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A man facing lawsuits involving a jon boat crash that killed four people and injured six others on the Mississippi River in 2012 has agreed to hand over $300,000 from an insurance policy, but he wants a judge to absolve him of

    July 24, 2014

  • Spontaneous combustion causes Cedar Rapids fire CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (AP) — Cedar Rapids fire officials say a fire at a local bar was caused by spontaneous combustion of rags and towels containing animal fat. An early morning fire Wednesday at the Chrome Horse Saloon and Slop House damaged the first

    July 24, 2014

  • Fired Iowa editor claims religious discrimination NEWTON (AP) — The former editor of the Newton Daily News has filed a complaint with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission claiming he was fired for expressing his religious beliefs.In the complaint filed Wednesday, Bob Eschliman claimed re

    July 24, 2014

Obituaries
Record
Facebook
AP National