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Former Juvenile Justice Department employee arrested on indecency with a child charge

The woman is also accused of helping three youths abscond from a TJJD halfway house.
Credit: Texas Juvenile Justice Department

AUSTIN, Texas — A former employee of the Texas Juvenile Justice Department was arrested on Monday afternoon after being charged with indecency with a child.

According to the Office of the Inspector General (OIG), suspect Deena Riley, 44, joined the agency in 2020. She resigned from her position as a youth development coach at McClennan County Juvenile Facility in Mart in January.

Officials said that on April 12, three youths absconded from a TJJD halfway house. Investigators said Riley assisted in that act and, on April 28, she was arrested and booked in the Ellis County Jail for hindering apprehension.

RELATED: Gov. Greg Abbott asks Texas Rangers to investigate Texas Juvenile Justice Department

The TJJD said the youth in question for the indecency with a child charge is a 16-year-old male. 

Because Riley was not an employee of the TJJD at the time of the offense, the Ellis County District Attorney will be prosecuting her case.

Monday's announcement comes just one week after Gov. Greg Abbott called for the Texas Rangers to investigate the TJJD for "reports of illegal behavior."

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