FOX Files – Troubled Teens Scared Straight In County Jail

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BELLEVILLE, IL (KTVI) - Parents who fear their children are making bad decisions and headed into trouble can scare their kids straight through a program at the St. Clair County jail.

This tour is the only one like it in the Midwest.  People come from as far away as New York and Chicago to bring their kids to the jail.  The Scared Straight program is an hour long tour where kids are taken through the jail to see what it's like first hand to live behind bars.

The inmates scream and yell obscenities at them.  The language is raw, threatening and in your face.  The inmates agree to participate because they don't want to see the teens make the same mistakes they've made at their age.

The sheriffs department says they hear back from parents after their kids have gone through the program and about 75 percent say it had a dramatic effect on the kids.

Want to sign a an adolescent up for the program?  Sign them with the St. Clair County Sheriffs Department

Behind the Scenes: Scared Straight Behind Prison Bars

BELLEVILLE ( KTVI)- If all you know about prison is from what Hollywood portrays, then
you’ll be really surprised . FOX2 News crews go behind the scenes as news anchor Mandy Murphey and news photographer Dave Sharp take you on a journey behind bars at the St. Clair County Jail for the Scared Straight Program. Beyond Scared Straight is a powerful documentary series currently  airing on A&E. One of the it’s thrilling episodes  was shot at  the St. Clair County Jail in Belleville Illinois.  More...

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