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Posted: March 15, 2012 10:44 a.m.

Ga. juvenile officer accused of sex crimes

ATLANTA (AP) - A former juvenile corrections officer has been jailed after being accused of sex crimes.

The former employee, Ardith Brown, faces charges of felony child molestation and sexual assault against persons in custody, the Georgia Department of Juvenile Justice said in a statement late Wednesday.

Brown was a former staff member at the Regional Youth Detention Center in Gainesville. She was fired on Feb. 2, after an internal investigation into allegations of an inappropriate relationship with a 14-year-old in the department's custody, authorities said.

Brown was being held in the Hall County Jail. Jail records did not indicate whether she had an attorney.

The Gainesville case is the latest in a series of investigations involving the Department of Juvenile Justice, which began a system-wide review after the beating death of a 19-year-old at an Augusta facility.

"As a result of our surprise inspections at all 27 Georgia juvenile detention centers, we've observed many of our Juvenile Corrections Officers become more diligent in monitoring youth activity at all our facilities," Commissioner Gale Buckner said in a statement.

The agency recently named a new director of the Augusta Youth Development Campus, which has been at the center of several investigations involving its staff after the beating death.

Nine workers at the Augusta youth center have been fired since November. Two others were demoted and offered positions at different facilities.

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