Officials are investigating the death of a 14-year-old boy allegedly brutally beaten by guards at a young offenders' "boot camp" hours before he died. A video apparently shows the guards punching, kicking and choking the boy after he became unco-operative during a work-out session.
Martin Anderson died in hospital in Pensacola, Florida, one day after he entered a military-style camp for young offenders run by the county sheriff. Camp officials said guards had to "restrain" the teenager. His death is being investigated by Florida state authorities, which showed the video to two state representatives.
Gus Barreiro, a Republican, called the videotape "horrific" and said that he had "never seen any kid being brutalised ... the way I saw this young man being brutalised". His fellow state representative Dan Gelber said the video was "disturbing [and] heinous".
Frank McKeithen, the Bay County Sheriff, said politicians over-reacted and made "inaccurate statements". But the boy's mother, Gina Jones, demanded to see the video, saying her son's organs were so damaged they could not be donated.The boy was sent to the camp after being arrested for joy-riding in his grandmother's car. She did not want to press charges. The results of a post-mortem examination have not been released.