Ohio moves to shut juvenile homes in 2 counties


COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) -- Ohio is moving to shut down 19 group homes for troubled juveniles because state officials say the facilities have serious problems with supervision and safety.

The homes operated by ViaQuest are in Franklin County, which includes Columbus, and Lake County, northeast of Cleveland. The Columbus Dispatch reports (http://bit.ly/xZSUcO ) state investigators said they found that children and employees had been bitten by fleas from a dead raccoon, that a girl's leg was run over when she fell off a car, that kids drank and smoked pot at an offsite cookout, and other issues.

ViaQuest President Richard Johnson says the company will appeal to keep the homes open. He acknowledges that there are problems but says state budget cuts have left the facilities dealing with children with more complex needs.


Information from: The Columbus Dispatch, http://www.dispatch.com