CAMARILLO — State lawmakers investigating incidents at the California Youth Authority's Ventura School will hold a hearing Monday.
Sheriff Larry Carpenter will testify before the Senate Select Committee on Prison Management about why his agency is not more involved in criminal investigations at the Camarillo facility, the state's only coed juvenile corrections center.
Lloyd Wood, inspector general of the state Youth and Adult Correctional Agency, will also testify on how the Ventura School can improve its policies and investigations.
Although Woods submitted a report to Sen. Ruben Ayala (D-Chino) last month, Ayala called the report "too skimpy and too simplistic" and asked for more specific and instructional recommendations.
The report stems from an June 1996 incident in which a male inmate allegedly raped a 17-year-old female inmate at the institution, which is for offenders ages 13 to 25. Most of the inmates there have committed violent crimes.
The inspector general found that CYA's investigation into the incident was incomplete because medical evidence was not properly preserved.
The case also prompted Ayala, chairman of the Senate committee, to hold a special legislative hearing in Sacramento last month. At the hearing, he said lax supervision had allowed rapes, sex between a ward and an officer, and even a ward's death to occur at Ventura School.
Sen. Cathie Wright (R-Simi Valley), who attended the Oct. 7 hearing and requested that the follow-up be held in Camarillo, has said many volunteers who work at the facility have come forward with additional information about sex regularly occurring between officers and female inmates.
However, Ayala said he is uncertain as to how his committee will investigate these allegations.
"I'm so disturbed with what's been taking place," he said. "But everyone tells me they are scared to testify, and I just don't know how we can get to the bottom of this."
The hearing will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Camarillo City Hall.