Jade Holder, 19, died after being attacked in the Augusta Youth Development Campus. (WRDW-TV / Nov. 9, 2011)
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- It was a bond hearing that wasn't for 17-year-old Michael Everidge.
Richmond County authorities say the state had a paperwork mix-up.
This was a letdown for Keiondra Everidge, who says she's worried about her son's safety.
She hasn't talked to her son, Michael Everidge, in nine days. The last time she talked to him was last Thursday after the GBI charged him with murdering fellow inmate 19-year-old Jade Holder inside the Augusta Youth Development Campus.
"I feel like it's some covering up going on and my child is the one they're trying to make the fall guy, and I will not stand and let that happen," she said.
Keiondra says her son is currently on lockdown and on suicide watch at the Augusta State Medical Prison.
His mother doesn't buy it, and she's questioning the system.
"Yes, I trusted the system with my child," she said. "But I see what the system got me. I see where it got my child."
Michael was set to be released this January after serving less than a year for a purse snatching at the YDC. Instead, the boy excelling in his GED classes on campus is facing a murder trial after the GBI says he fatally beat Holder last week. A motive is still unknown.
"Yes, we are owed answers! Our children were left in their custody. They were supposed to protect them. And they did not do that. They didn't protect either one of them," Michael's mother said.
Two days before Holder's beating, another inmate went unprotected. It's written in black and white in a report of another beating in a YDC cell, which you can read in the documents we have linked.
In this incident report, the reporting officer said he came in and noticed the lights were out and the guard was missing.
"When I looked up, I noticed several residents walking out of room 135 and the last to leave was resident (name redacted), whom was covered in blood holding his face," he said in the report.
The unidentified victim stated in the report: "They kept trying to tell me I am a 'Blood.' They pulled me in another youth's room. It was more than two of them. They have done jumped me before and they will do it again. I didn't lose consciousness, but I was about to."
This inmate's injury was rated as a three on the severity scale, meaning it required medical care. The extent of the injury and the care that followed was withheld. So were the names of the five juveniles accused in the case.
Two days later, Holder was left for brain dead.
"These children were in a juvenile correctional facility where they were supposed to be guarded. How could you let something like this happen? Where were you? I'm angry. I'm past angry. I'm furious because this is my child's life they are playing with. And I believe there's a lot of covering up. And I'm going to keep saying that," Keiondra said.
And the same day Michael was charged, Cpt. Victor Martin, who oversaw security at the Augusta YDC, was suspended with pay.
The Department of Juvenile Justice is citing an investigation into employee misconduct. News 12 has not been given the specifics on the circumstances. The DJJ says it cannot comment any further because of the ongoing investigation.
"Maybe my child is scared to tell something. I don't know. How can I know if I can't talk to him or see him?" Keiondra asked. "And if anybody at the YDC know what really happen, they need to tell it."
News 12 continues to reach out to the DJJ or anyone in a leadership position at the YDC. But, again, we are told no comment citing the ongoing criminal investigation.
As for Michael and his bond hearing -- no one can tell News 12 if it's been rescheduled. So far, we've been told it's not a mix-up on the DJJ's behalf but rather by the courts. News 12 has called the district attorney's office, but so far, we haven't heard back.
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