Juvenile Facilities detention housing is intended for youth going through the court process. It also serves to provide temporary custody for youth in need of short-term removal from the community and/or awaiting transfer to another jurisdiction or placement facility.

Units are named after local Ventura County canyons: Balcom, Matilija and Sycamore. Each general housing unit contains 15 single sleeping rooms. The units have their own dayroom, classrooms, open staff station, and outdoor exercise areas. The living units are designed with sleeping rooms, or cells, located on an upper and lower level. A gymnasium and recreational yard are located adjacent to the units and are used for supervised recreational activities.

In the Detention Units, educational and therapeutic programming is available, and youth also have the opportunity to participate in community service projects by volunteering their labor and time to non-profit organizations.

        Purpose of Detention Statement

The Ventura County Probation Agency (VCPA) detains youth in the Juvenile Facilities who cannot be placed in a less restrictive setting and have been arrested for serious law violations or substantial violations of their probation terms. VCPA assesses the risk of youth utilizing a risk assessment instrument. Secure detention is only applied in those cases when a minor, as a result of their actions or behavior, presents a significant threat to the community an imminent risk of harm to themselves, risk to the person or property of others or demonstrates a significant likelihood they will not appear at future court appearances. VCPA is committed to maintaining a safe and secure environment for youth in those situations where detention is deemed necessary, which both assures safety to the community and is conducive to the goals of rehabilitation.


Youth housed in the Juvenile Facilities’ Commitment Units are serving court-imposed commitments of up to one year. Each housing unit is divided into four 15-bed living units, each with its own classroom and two program rooms. Each living unit has its own day room and outdoor exercise area. Sleeping rooms are single occupant rooms.

In the Commitment Units, educational and therapeutic programming is provided, and vocational, emancipation-based programming is available for older youth.

Long-term Commitment residents have the opportunity to participate in classes through the Ventura County Office of Education, including landscaping and auto mechanic (pending). There are also opportunities to participate in on-line community college courses and on-site Boys & Girls Club activities.

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