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Head of troubled Orleans juvenile center resigns

WWL-TV has an investigative story for Monday night at 10 p.m. on the troubled center and the man who ran it.

NEW ORLEANS — The director of the troubled Orleans Juvenile Justice Intervention Center has resigned.

Dr. Kyshun Webster is the subject of a WWL-TV investigative report slated to run Monday night at 10 p.m. on the Justice Center, which was wracked by scandal, violence and high turnover when he took charge in 2018 and which continues to struggle.

The city announced his resignation late Monday afternoon. Superintendent Dichelle Williams will be the interim director “until further notice,” said the city.

In an investigative report, Mike Perlstein interviewed current and former employees who said Webster was one of the main reasons for employee dissatisfaction that led to resignations.

Webster cited staff shortages as one of the reasons for the January 12 escape of four detainees who immediately carjacked a woman and drove off, sending police SWAT teams all over the city to recapture them.

One former supervisor spoke anonymously because he said he fears retaliation at his new job.

“Morale was horrible. It was downhill every day. Like I said, I would go to work and I'd be afraid to get out of that car,” he said.

Yet another employee who asked to remain anonymous quit recently, saying she was fed up with management.

“Some people are just ran off. And that's the honest truth,” she said. “Just run off from the job.”

Employees confirm that Webster was far from a daily presence at JJIC.

“You can go a week or two at a time of not seeing him,” one employee said.

CRIME NEWS: Teen suspects in deadly March carjacking, charged as adults, DA Jason Williams said indictment was fair

RELATED: 4 Juvenile Justice center escapees back in custody Sunday

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