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FIFTY-FIVE BODIES, AND ZERO TRIALS, AT THE FLORIDA SCHOOL FOR BOYS


Society & Culture  (tags: Marianna Florida, boys school, children, abuse, crime, death, family, law, society, rights, news, sadness, violence )

Carrie
- 260 days ago - newyorker.com
This week, the remains of fifty-five bodies were found in unmarked graves on the grounds of the former Florida School for Boys, in the panhandle town of Marianna.



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Comments

Howard Crosse (17)
Saturday February 1, 2014, 12:21 pm
The fear that these young people must have experienced must have been significant. I hope that anyone who can face charges (that is they are still alive) does so. The message must be sent that abuse will not be tolerated.
 

Kit B. (276)
Saturday February 1, 2014, 1:07 pm

The articles says this week, but this has been a follow up to other bodies or body parts found on the property. I thought there was no statue of limitations on murder. Or maybe these boys just hopped into a grave. Yeah, it's Florida.

Well darn, they just might have been forced to do an investigation:

"There is no statute of limitations for murder and other crimes causing death, which means that there is no legal bar to bringing charges. In Florida, all capital cases have long had no statute of limitations, and when these crimes were allegedly committed forcible rape was punishable by death. But there are challenges to prosecuting old crimes: given how much time has passed, it may be difficult to determine who was responsible for the killings, and many of the suspects, meanwhile, have already died, including the school’s longtime superintendent, Lenox Williams, who died in 2010. Some are still alive, including Troy Tidwell, an instructor at the school, who was accused of abuse in a class-action lawsuit filed by more than two hundred former students in 2009. (Tidwell denies the accusations, and the case was dismissed after a judge ruled that the statute of limitations on the charges had run out.)"

 

Kit B. (276)
Saturday February 1, 2014, 1:09 pm

I watched one of those true crime things on TV that the victim had died fifty years ago and through hard work, lots of cold leads and a desire for justice the case was finally solved. That of course was not in Florida.
 

Allan Yorkowitz (445)
Saturday February 1, 2014, 2:00 pm
An outrageous article. What was most disturbing is the fact that out of all these boys, not one parent came forward?
 

. (0)
Saturday February 1, 2014, 2:01 pm
How horribly tragic. It's tragic too that our penal systems still don't help as many juveniles as they should and young people aren't given the care they should have.. There is so much to do to help so many.
 

Rose NoFWDSPLZ (276)
Saturday February 1, 2014, 2:20 pm
WTF
 

Elizabeth M. (67)
Saturday February 1, 2014, 3:14 pm
These boys must not be forgotten and justice must be served for them. I read an indepth article a while ago about this Florida School for boys. In the article a man tells of how he and a friend got on the road and were either smoking or inhaling something, when suddenly they saw someone coming down the road.They both ran, and the friend was caught. A few days after being caught, his friend could not find him anywhere and decided to inquire, and was told his friend died of pneumonia. He said they were beaten regularly. He was sent there by his parents, who had said he was too hard to control and always getting into some kind of trouble.
Allan Y, maybe many of the parents have passed on as this started happening many, many years ago. It does not state when the school first opened in the article, however. Something has to be done so these boys will always be remembered. They were not killers, or rapists, only young boys that were not conforming to the rules of the parents.
Appreciate the post Carrie.
















 

Genoveva M M. (327)
Saturday February 1, 2014, 10:46 pm
This is unbelievable considering it hasn't been that long since these incidents were taking part of that school.
So sad, and also how could they keep so many boys in silence?
 

A F. (132)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 2:00 am
:(
 

Mike Pattison (6)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 2:12 am
So Sad ! Thanks for the info.
 

Mike Pattison (6)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 2:12 am
So Sad ! Thanks for the info.
 

Gloria picchetti (296)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 3:30 am
I don't do Florida.
 

caroline s. (80)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 6:44 am
Quelle horreur }:*-(
 

Lona Goudswaard (71)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 7:49 am
Probably over a hundred bodies, many of these of boys who didn't die of natural causes, the school only closed in 2011 and it was a state run reformatory school for boys. Add all this up and of course you get: not a single criminal charge filed, or even a criminal investigation opened. Shame on you, Florida!
Isn't one of these boys from another state so it could go Federal? Or isn't that the way justice works in the US?
 

Lloyd H. (46)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 8:09 am
It is sad that the article is so short on relevant facts. This Institution of Horrors was open for 111 years, from 1900 to 2011. The place was from the beginning was plagued with rumors and reports of torture, rape, etc. and fostered many investigations and changes of leadership and promises of improvement. The Florida Dept. of Law Enforcement investigation, begun in 2008 ended in 2010, found no concrete evidence linking the 33 graves(none of which were ever opened) dated from 1914 to 1952 with school staff or attempts to cover up the deaths. The second investigation that as far as I know entailed only interviews, by the Civil Rights Division of the USDOJ did conclude that, "The youth confined at Dozier and JJOC were subjected to... avoidable harm in violation of their rights protected by the Constitution of the USA...". Also not mentioned is the fact that the number of bodies found so far is not only nearly 2X the number of "officially recorded" graves but so far only the "Black side of the graveyard" has been excavated and even more are expected to be found on the "White side" when they get there. I personally have some doubts as to whether or not legally charges can be made considering that as far as I can tell there is no law enforcement involvement in this archeological dig, that is all the Gov. Scott actually authorized, a legal court admissible chain of custody for any evidence may not exist to actually result in any prosecutions let alone convictions.
 

Birgit W. (147)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 9:25 am
I just feel sick. This is horrific. How could they get away with that for so many years?
Justice must be served for those poor boys.
 

Julie Botsch (12)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 10:17 am
Thank You. In the sad history of the US, many of the children who were sent to reform schools often were seen as individuals who did conform to the social 'mores' of the communities in which they inhabited. Thus, their crimes could be as innocuous as reporting a pedophile to an adult ...and/or being gay. The majority of children who disappeared in such institutions were often victims of child abuse.
 

Julie Botsch (12)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 10:22 am
Thank You. In the sad history of the US, many of the children who were sent to reform schools often were seen as individuals who did conform to the social 'mores' of the communities in which they inhabited. Thus, their crimes could have been as innocuous as reporting a pedophile to an adult ...and/or being gay. The majority of children who disappeared in such institutions were often victims of child abuse.
 

Julie Botsch (12)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 10:27 am
Plus, many children are sent to such institutions to invalidate them. That is to discredit them in the eyes of the world at large. Who would believe the word of such children against an adult? Thus, such children would be less likely to bring their victimizers to justice.

(Think of the recent story of the nuns in Northern Ireland who were threatening to send the children that they were abusing to reform institutions.)

 

Julie Botsch (12)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 10:37 am
Plus, many children are sent to such institutions to invalidate them. That is to discredit them in the eyes of the world at large. (Who would believe the word of such children against an adult?) Thus, such children often find it more difficult to bring their victimizers to justice.

(Think of the recent story of the nuns in Northern Ireland who were threatening to send the children that they were abusing to reform institutions.)
 

Lloyd H. (46)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 12:21 pm
One can also look at the abhorrent crimes committed by various Religious groups upon the children of Aboriginal First peoples around the world. The horrors manifest in just the West and North West of the USA make the Florida Reform Schools look like well run daycares. The above "school was open for 4 years before the Child Labor Committee was formed, The Keating-Owen Act on child labor signed by President Wilson in 1916 was struck down by US Supreme Court for violating the Commerce Clause of the Constitution in 1918. The still in use Fair Labor Standards Act of I believe 1942 exempts agricultural child labor which is still allowed today.
Remember that the Good Old US of A and Somalia are the only two nations that have REFUSED TO SIGN the UN Conventions on the Rights of Children since 1989.
 

Dandelion G. (379)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 1:09 pm
In 1968, Florida’s governor at the time, Claude Kirk, said of the school, “Somebody should have blown the whistle a long time ago.” There have long been allegations of beatings, torture, and sexual abuse there; it now appears that some students were killed.

And it took until 2011 to close it? Just goes to show where the priorities are.

As with orphans, and the north American Indians, too many people just ignore, it's out of sight and out of mind. If you are not rich, if you don't follow the cookie cutter mold, if you fall into any sub group, if you end up being at the mercy of others........the most outrageous evils are sent down upon the most vulnerable, in this case the children.

I had also placed a story on awhile back about the Mohawk children being uncovered in mass graves as well. If anyone would care to read the link is:
Mass Genocide of Mohawk Children
 

Angela J. (64)
Sunday February 2, 2014, 9:21 pm
Very strange.
 

Angelus Silesius (66)
Thursday February 13, 2014, 5:46 am
I hope these unfortunate boys finally found peace in the loving arms of the most high
 
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