Lawmakers Lash Out at Youth Commission Officials

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State lawmakers are vowing to hold officials accountable after allegations of sexual abuse of juvenile inmates and a coverup within the Texas Youth Commission.

They also hinted they might seek to take over the troubled agency.

Lawmakers held an angry and emotional hearing to challenge agency staff on investigations that found high-ranking officials at the West Texas State School in Pyote had repeated sexual contact with inmates.

An internal investigation found that many prison staffers had complained about the abuse to their immediate bosses and to officials in Austin, but for more than a year, no one in charge did anything to stop it.

A Texas Rangers investigation in early 2005 found that the prison's assistant superintendent and the school's principal had repeated sexual contact with inmates.