Sheriff Says Close Down the Boot Camp

By: Victoria Langley
By: Victoria Langley

The Bay County boot camp where relatives say a teen was fatally beaten by sheriff’s deputies last month is shutting its doors.

Bay County Sheriff Frank McKeithen sent a letter Tuesday to the state Department of Juvenile Justice that the program would close in 90 days. The announcement comes just as the second mother in as many days comes forward to allege massive problems with the system.

Shauna Manning’s son was at the Bay County boot camp at the same time as Martin Anderson, the boy who died hours after being roughed up by sheriff’s deputies.

She says she had to come forward when her traumatized teen told her he’d seen the whole thing.

“Because I feel bad for this lady and every other child and every other parent of kids that are there that don’t deserve this kind of treatment. It’s terrible. No 14-year-old child deserves what her child went through.”

Now the Bay County sheriff says he is closing the boot camp. In a letter to the state Department of Juvenile Justice, the sheriff says the integrity of the program has been compromised and its effectiveness virtually paralyzed.

The Bay County medical examiner is also coming under increasing scrutiny. He blamed Martin’s death on a genetic disorder. Another mother came forward this week, saying autopsies he performed on her husband and daughter were filled with errors.

Martin’s parents’ attorney, Benjamin Crump, says it’s just more evidence of incompetence at best.

“Certainly with Miss Terry coming forward with the autopsy report that showed her daughter having testicles and a prostate gland.”

But even as the investigations widen, the pain doesn’t go away for Martin Anderson’s parents, or the growing circle of people, like Shauna Manning, who say the system hurt their families too.

“My 14-year-old child watched these men murder this child for no reason.”

The Bay County boot camp will close in late May.


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