Martin Lee Anderson, 14, died Jan. 5, hours after arriving at a juvenile boot camp for stealing his grandmother's car and violating probation. A local coroner says sickle cell trait, not an altercation with boot camp guards, killed Anderson. But an eerily silent surveillance video shows Bay County deputies restraining, kicking and punching the boy, who at times appeared limp and unable to comply. The results of a second autopsy remain secret, but at least one coroner involved says the youth did not die of sickle cell, or any other natural causes.
Now those responsible for Martin Lee Anderson's death have been acquitted:
An uneasy sense of dèjá vu swept over Florida last week after an all-white jury acquitted seven juvenile boot camp guards and a nurse charged with aggravated manslaughter in the death of a black teen last year.
First of all, stealing your grandmother's car is joyriding, and when a white kid does it, particularly a white kid from one of those rolling green hill communities, the cops take him home and hand him over to the parents with a warning. So we can all agree that the original offense was an example of disproportionate sentencing. And then, and then, a death sentence.
Today I am wearing black for Martin Lee Anderson. I am wearing black for Martin Lee Anderson, and for Mychal Bell, who remains in custody, and I am wearing black for all those who have been unjustly imprisoned in this country of outrageous injustice.
[thanks to Raven for the link]
UPDATE: More on this at blackamericaweb.com]