FAYETTE COUNTY, Tenn.– There is new information on a weekend disturbance at Wilder Youth Development Center in Fayette County.
Tuesday, from the perimeter of Wilder Youth Development Center all appeared to be quiet.
A far cry from January 1st when, according to officials from the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services, youth in two dorms broke through fire escape doors, exited the dorms and ran through the enclosed campus.
The state agency that operates the facility says youth there did not start a fire in the center’s school building. However, criminal charges are still expected to be filed.
In a statement, DCS, which operates Wilder, stressed:
“At no time did any of the youth escape the campus perimeter fence, which has recently been secured by additional razor wire.”
DCS also stated that private security guards, put in place in 2021, were patrolling outside the perimeter fence and in contact with Wilder leadership.
According to DCS, some of the youth entered the school building on the grounds and did some damage there as well as in two dorms.
The volunteer fire department from nearby Somerville responded to small fire inside the school but DCS said the fire was not started by youth but was caused by sparks from a defective light fixture that landed on a bean bag chair.
DCS said the Tennessee Highway Patrol responded to Wilder and assisted in restoring order as well as with getting youth back to their dorms and that THP has maintained a presence on the campus since the incident.
According to the Department of Children’s Services, there were no injuries and no damage estimates.
Criminal charges are likely for those involved in the incident.