MARIANNA - Dangerous, unconstitutional abuses of young people at the
hands of the state of Florida.
The US Department of Justice looked into claims from a group called "The White House Boys Survivors
In a stinging report, investigators call the former 'Florida School for Boys' in Marianna a "failed facility".
They found that the boys were subjected to excessive force, isolation, unsafe and unsanitary conditions and
unwarranted, intrusive searches.
They were also denied necessary medical care and rehabilitative services.
Today, Channel Three's Laura Hussey talked to a Fort Walton Beach man who says he'll never forget the
beatings and the threats.
Laura Hussey "For more than three years, Bryant Middleton and a group of survivors known as the White House
boys have been fighting to expose abuses they suffered at the Florida School for Boys in Marianna.
He's been keeping this scrapbook, and I want to show you what it says on the front 'A place no child should have
been sent to.'"
In a building called the White House, Middleton remembers being lashed with a leather-covered metal strap until
he passed out.
It was 40 years ago. He was fourteen.
Bryant Middleton: "It was the most pain I had ever, ever, ever felt in my life. And it kept on, and kept on, and kept
Now a report from the US Department of Justice says dangerous abuses took place until the school was closed
down last summer often out of the range of surveillance cameras.
Bryant: "They knew immediately that if a staff member takes them to this location, that they're going to be
Bryant: "Thrown up against walls, bounced off of steel beds, slapped around and choked out."
A Florida Department of Law Enforcement investigation released last year said the White House boys' allegations
of institutionalized torture couldn't be proven or disproven.
Bryant: "The FDLE's whitewash investigation has now been exposed for what it was a whitewash and a cover up."
"We had been physically, mentally, emotionally and sexually abused, three hundred of us, and nobody seemed to
The federal report says the shortfalls in supervision, training and accountability are so dramatic that the state
must review its other facilities.
Bryant Middleton: "Now they have no choice but to work on it and to stop it."
Laura Hussey: "It has been a difficult, painful time for Bryant Middleton and his family. But he says he can sleep at
night now, knowing that no other child will be abused at the Florida School for Boys.
The full Justice Department report is online. READ IT HERE
Monday, December 5 2011, 08:59 PM CST
BRIAN MIDDLETON TALKS TO HIS
WIFE AS THE SCHOOL IS FINALLY