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Rights groups file lawsuit alleging county's mistreatment of disabled youth

A lawsuit was filed against Kern County on Wednesday by two disability rights groups claiming that youth in the county’s correctional facilities were discriminated against.

Disability Rights California and Disability Rights Advocates say youths with mental and behavioral disabilities in the county Juvenile Hall and other facilities were subjected to restraints, pepper spray and solitary confinement more than other youths.

The claims came out of a six-month investigation into the facilities, with a 50-page report released this week. The report also alleges that youth were not provided with adequate mental health treatment and were denied rights to special education.

The two groups filed the lawsuit on behalf of three teens who are plaintiffs in the case. The lawsuit seeks relief for the plaintiffs and coverage of legal costs for the suit.

This story will be updated as we delve into the lawsuit and its allegations. 

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