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Broken: Juvenile escapees all have violent histories

Posted: 5:40 PM, Dec 02, 2019
Updated: 2019-12-02 21:05:42-05
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — All four of the escapees from Nashville's juvenile detention center have violent histories, in some cases going back years, a NewsChannel 5 investigation had determined.

READ MORE: 'Critical oversights' allowed 4 teens, including 2 murder suspects, to escape detention center

In fact, their histories may be further evidence of what's broken about Tennessee's juvenile justice system.

Sixteen-year-old Decorrius Wright may be the most notorious of the bunch.

Earlier this year, he was charged with murder, accused of being the triggerman who shot and killed Nashville singer Kyle Yorlets during an attempted carjacking.

Our investigation discovered that Wright was arrested for auto theft at age 13.

At age 15, he was charged with the homicide.

According to court testimony, he was written up 34 times in juvenile detention between February and July.

In April, he allegedly assaulted a staff member.

In July, he and another kid took a staff member's key card, used it to enter another part of the facility, where they beat up another juvenile and sent him to the hospital.

Despite that history, Juvenile Judge Sheila Calloway had ruled back in August that he could be released and sent home with an electronic ankle monitor if he could make a $400,000 bond.

That never happened.

Wright was scheduled for a hearing this week on whether his case would be sent to adult court.

Seventeen-year-old Morris Marsh was also awaiting a transfer hearing, charged with the targeted murder of 19-year-old Charlie Easley back in April.

His record:

  • Arrested at age 14 for aggravated assault.
  • At 15, for aggravated robbery.
  • Six months later, for theft, handgun possession and other charges.

He was first sent to residential treatment, then to the state Department of Children's Services.

Seventeen-year-old Brandon Caruthers was charged at age 15 with armed robbery after he and another teen allegedly threatened to kill a woman outside an Antioch apartment complex, then took her purse.

According to police, Caruthers and his accomplice were caught on a Kroger surveillance camera using the victim's stolen debit card.

That case has already been sent to adult court.

Then, there's 15-year-old Calvin Howse.

At age 14, Howse was arrested for aggravated robbery.

He was found incompetent and sent to DCS.

Last month, he was charged with auto theft and handgun possession.

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