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Wayne County fires jail official, reassigns commander following sexual assault claim

State officials offer 'supervision' after latest abuse allegation
Posted at 6:35 PM, Mar 17, 2023
and last updated 2023-03-17 18:41:52-04

HAMTRAMCK, Mich. (WXYZ) — Wayne County has fired one top official and reassigned another following a 12-year-old boy’s claim that he was sexually and physically assaulted inside the county’s juvenile jail.

Michigan State Police are currently investigating the allegations made following an altercation Tuesday night inside the troubled facility in Hamtramck.

On Friday, the county announced that Deputy Director Mark Roland — hired in the fall to oversee the jail — was terminated, and Cmdr. Brandon Barber was reassigned.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced Thursday that they would intervene at the troubled jail by sending in staff to help oversee operations.

But county officials say their help is too little, too late. For more than a year, they say they have sounded the alarm about a lack of residential facilities available to discharge children to after their court cases concluded.

As a result, sometimes violent children are stacked up at the county jail and often escaped from their rooms, damaged cells and attacked other children or staff.

Wayne County’s juvenile facility is meant to treat up to 80 children at a time. Today, it holds about 140.

Contact 7 Investigator Ross Jones at or (248) 827-9466.