L.A. County Promoted More Than 50 Probation Workers With Discipline Problems Including Mistreatment of Children, Off-Duty DUIs

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A view inside Camp Scott, a juvenile facility run by the Los Angeles County Probation Department in Santa Clarita. (Credit: Barbara Davidson / Los AngelesTimes)

A view inside Camp Scott, a juvenile facility run by the Los Angeles County Probation Department in Santa Clarita. (Credit: Barbara Davidson / Los AngelesTimes)

More than 50 employees working inside Los Angeles County’s juvenile lockups received promotions despite a history of disciplinary problems or criminal arrests under a deal county leaders quietly cut earlier this year.

The workers had previously been denied promotion for actions ranging from mistreatment of children in custody to off-duty drunk driving. The rules were part of a larger effort to reform the Probation Department, which has faced years of scrutiny for mistreatment of children and spent a decade under monitoring by the U.S. Department of Justice.

The county softened the policy after the union representing the employees filed a lawsuit challenging the denial of promotions. A judge ruled in favor of the county. But when the union appealed, the county decided to settle the case and create a new policy allowing more employees with discipline records to receive promotions.

Cal Remington, the interim probation chief, said the county softened the rules in an effort to improve relations with employees.

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