61 juveniles after riot at Avon Park Youth Academy

POLK COUNTY, Fla. — Polk County authorities have charged 61 juveniles after a riot at the Avon Park Youth Academy last month.

The riot started over a bet on a cup of noodles during a basketball game.

The juveniles are facing numerous charges, including rioting, burglary and arson.

Each of the 61 juveniles faces two felonies apiece, authorities said.

Sheriff Grady Judd said Friday that it took his men only 20 minutes once they arrived to get control of the situation.

The losing team didn't pay up what they owed: ramen noodles.

Authorities said once the fight turned into a riot, 138 juveniles on the campus trashed almost every building, set a dumpster on fire, stole golf carts and were riding around on them throwing things at the officers.

The Avon Park Academy is operated by the Department of Juvenile Justice, but a private contractor called G4s run the facility.

The sheriff said his investigation revealed that the situation would not have happened if the employees had been trained to handle riots, or at the very least, were allowed to carry peppery spray.

"They owned that facility. They took it away from G4s that night and they did it because G4s had no tools to deal with the out-of-control juvy thug," said Judd.

Many of the kids charged in the case have been sent back to that same facility.

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