Richmond Juvenile Detention Center Under Investigation

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) -The Richmond Juvenile Detention Center is under fire after accusations of misconduct.

Now, a criminal investigation is underway.

Friday morning, the Richmond Commonwealth's Attorney, Michael Herring, confirmed his office is looking into allegations of fraud at the facility.

"The only thing my office is looking at is the possibility that certain documents may have been forged and improperly submitted," said Herring.

The investigation comes on the heels of a city audit which found the facility had maintenance and security problems.

The report also raised concerns regarding possible fraudulent signatures of documents.

" The report suggest it would have been a supervisor or someone in a position to certify staff members had been trained and the allegation is that they had not and by submitting the documents with false information they committed fraud," said Herring.

In September the NAACP, which is representing several staff members at the detention center, called for an audit of the facility, as well as an investigation into the alleged forged documents.

The organization continues to have strong words regarding the facility.

" You have situations where employee signatures don't match and sometime the employee signature will match a supervisor's signature. Most of the employees at the detention center have not had these trainings," said King Salim Khalfani, Executive Director of the Richmond Chapter of the NAACP.

The commonwealth's attorney says staff members and management at the detention center are cooperating with the investigation.

" I have a good impression of the facility. In the years I've worked with them I've never had the sense things were done improperly -- but this is a serious allegation and we'll take it as such," said Herring.

In a statement Richmond Mayor Dwight Jones says in part, "I have reviewed the initial report from the state. The report indicates we are making progress on addressing those issues that have been brought to our attention. However, I remain very troubled by the uncertainty regarding the staff training issues and adequate documentation."

Copyright 2012 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.