Initial Development & Advocate Groups
Justice William A. Berry started the Oklahoma County Juvenile Detention Home movement in June 1953. Justice Berry was then the County Juvenile Judge. For several years, there was an interest in developing a detention facility to serve Oklahoma County. One of the first groups to advocate construction of a detention home was the Juvenile Council of Oklahoma City. Other interested groups were:
- County Officials
- Members of the Bar and Medical Professions
- Parent Teacher Association (PTA) Groups
- Professional Groups of Social Workers
- United Church Women
This interest and support brought about introduction of a bill in the State Legislature in 1955, which authorized Oklahoma County to vote bonds for the construction of a detention home for delinquent youth. The Board of County Commissioners in July 1956 authorized the vote on this bond issue. A substantial majority authorized the bond issue. After a series of delays around procurement of a site and other details had been worked out, construction commenced in March 1958. The first child was admitted to detention on December 20, 1958.
The Board of County Commissioners, by resolution, on the 8th day of February 1960, gave the official name of "Berry House" to the Juvenile Detention Home, in honor of Justice William A. Berry.
The original 21 bed facility was replaced by a 42 bed facility in September of 1986. An additional 38 beds, 3 classrooms, along with staff offices, and multi-purpose room were added in 1996.
Detention Services / Transportation
Provides secure custody of persons under the age of 18 years charged with delinquency, pending Court disposition. Transports juveniles to and from court and, when ordered by the court, transports juveniles to various residential placements.