A look at the "fight club" culture inside Florida's juvenile justice system, where staffers sometimes employ harsh takedowns, ignore abuse and offer snacks as bribes for beatdowns — known as "honey-bunning."
As the Department of Justice prepares to visit Lowell Correctional and interview present and past inmates about alleged sexual abuse, the Florida prison system has settled a handful of sex abuse lawsuits filed by inmates and naming staff as abusers.
Lowell Correctional, Florida’s largest women’s prison, has been beset by allegations of physical, mental and sexual abuse. The reports have spawned a subpoena for extensive records and a tour by the U.S. Department of Justice.
The Department of Justice civil rights investigation comes years after a Miami Herald investigation, “Beyond Punishment,’’ detailed a system of flagrant sexual extortion and other abuse by guards at Lowell Correctional Institution in Central Florida.
Four juveniles and employee Antoine Davis at the Walton Academy for Growth and Change, a DeFuniak Springs Department of Juvenile Justice facility in Florida’s Panhandle, were charged with a sexual attack and battery on a 15-year-old boy.
Alleny Carbone, 15, had a long history with the Department of Juvenile Justice and a long track record of contemplating self-harm. She was still able to kill herself in the Manatee County juvenile lockup.
Anthony Vidal, 45, was killed by his cellmate at Dade Correctional Institution in 2016, but a lawsuit filed in Miami-Dade circuit court Tuesday blames the Florida Department of Corrections for his strangling.
A detention officer body-slammed and slugged a 14-year-old detainees at the Broward lockup. Although the detention officer resigned, the state refused to say — until now — whether it would prosecute. It won't.
The state gave its juvenile detention officers a pay raise, set aside some money for physical improvements, including plumbing upgrades, bought new surveillance cameras and allowed lawmakers to visit whenever they want.
A juvenile lockup employee sought a higher-paying job at the Miami Gardens Police Department. Among the screening requirements was a polygraph. It was such a disaster that not only was she not hired by the city, but she was fired by the state.
A Miami Herald series on abuses in the Florida juvenile justice system is a finalist for the 2018 Goldsmith Prize for Investigative Reporting, the Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics and Public Policy at Harvard’s Kennedy School announced Wednesday.
The Legislature passed and the governor signed a prison budget with a $28 million hole, forcing the Department of Corrections to make deep cuts to programs aimed at preparing inmates to return to the community.
Although no criminal charges were filed, the death of Darren Rainey has brought about major changes in the way prisons across the nation treat inmates with mental disabilities. It also just led to a $4.5 million settlement.
State Sen. Perry Thurston Jr. and Gordon Weekes, who is in charge of the juvenile division of the Broward Public Defender’s Office, react to the conditions inside Broward Regional Juvenile Detention Center on Friday, Nov. 3, 2017.