Feb 27, 2006
Martin Lee Anderson, a 14-year-old black youth, died at a Florida boot camp after guards punched and kicked him and shoved ammonia agents in his face. Some of the guards held Anderson while others beat him. A nurse on hand at the time watched the beating and did nothing to intervene.
The medical examiner exonerated the guards, ruling that Anderson’s death resulted from internal bleeding caused by his carrying the sickle cell trait.
And that’s where it would have been buried, if not for the fact that the news media got hold of a security video that showed the whole vicious incident.
Despite the video, Florida Governor Jeb Bush defended the camp and the medical examiner!
But there was such an uproar against the medical examiner’s obvious falsification that Bush had to backpedal and appoint a special prosecutor. The county sheriff whose office runs the boot camp ordered the closing of the camp. Bush even declared the need for a second autopsy – he suddenly discovered that the medical examiner’s license was expired!
As the outcry went on, the state’s Department of Juvenile Justice ordered new safety measures at the camps. Among other things, the measures ban the use of punching, kneeing, wrist-twisting, pressure-point-pushing, electric stun guns and chemical agents.
In other words, the state admitted it had been abusing children. How many others died and how many more were severely traumatized before the video and the outcry by Martin Anderson’s parents forced the issue?
We may never know, but we do know that all these officials from Jeb Bush down to the prison guards are killers.