(WSMV) Authorities say 23 of the 32 teenagers who escaped from Nashville's Woodland Hills Youth Development Center late Monday night have been taken into custody.
The search continues for the nine escapees who remain at large.
According to Rob Johnson, communications director for the Tennessee Department of Children's Services, the teens escaped shortly after an employee shift change.
"At about 11 o'clock last night, about 32 youth - we believe - got out of their dorms and managed to slip underneath the perimeter fence," he said.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. - More than 30 teens escaped from a Nashville youth detention center in Tennessee and 17 were still being sought early Tuesday, a spokesman said.
Thirty-two teens — ages 14 to 19 — escaped from Woodland Hills Youth Development Center around 11 p.m. Monday by crawling under a weak spot in a fence that surrounded a yard there, Tennessee Department of Children's Services spokesman Rob Johnson said.
Two teens were recaptured right away and others were found overnight, Johnson said. Local police and the Tennessee Highway Patrol are taking part in the search for the teens still at large.
The teens being kept at the detention center have committed at least three felonies, Johnson said.
The escape happened when a large group of teens at the center went out into the yard all at once shortly after a shift change, Johnson said. He said he didn't know if the escape was planned or spontaneous. A total of 78 teens were being held at the center at the time, Johnson said.