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Inmate commits suicide at Pa. juvenile jail

| Thursday, Dec. 28, 2006

DANVILLE, Pa. (AP) -- An inmate at a juvenile jail hanged himself with a bed sheet, the coroner said.

Hien Nguyen, 17, of the Wilkes-Barre area, was pronounced dead Wednesday morning at the North Central Secure Treatment Unit, said Montour County coroner Scott Lynn.

An investigation into the teen's death will focus on whether staff checked on Nguyen at the prescribed times, Lynn said.

The state Department of Public Welfare, which runs the facility, is cooperating with authorities and conducting its own investigation, said spokeswoman Stacey Ward.

A riot broke out in the same building earlier this month, resulting in seven injured employees.

Low staffing and a high number of on-the-job injuries at North Central prompted lawmakers to step in about a year ago and call for improvements.

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