Newsroom > DHHS News Release

For Immediate Release
August 29, 2016

Russ Reno, Communications and Legislative Services, (office) 402-471-8287 or
(cell) 402-450-7318, or

YRTC-K Employee Resigns Prior to Arrest

Kearney – Today, Courtney Phillips, CEO of the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, announced the resignation of an employee of the Youth Rehabilitation and Treatment Center in Kearney prior to her arrest during an active investigation for inappropriate contact with a youth who was being served at the facility.
Samantha Halstead, a licensed provisional mental health practitioner, resigned and was arrested by the Nebraska State Patrol today.
According to DHHS, on Sunday (8/28), the facility administrator became aware of evidence regarding the alleged activity and DHHS immediately requested an investigation by the Nebraska State Patrol.  Halstead, who was not on campus at the time, was suspended Sunday without pay and restricted from campus and contact with YRTC youth.
“There is zero tolerance for this egregious behavior, which called for swift action,” said Phillips. “The safety, care and treatment of the youth at the YRTC are paramount in our mission and our work.”