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e 4# 4 40 At’ Ite di d Alf ;Or 4 *4 .40-‘ k. 40. ,air ,te 49:41eor 0 , / i glie A A ftS. . or, or as a mtf’ Former El. ins ittntitte Omar Briscofto I %Me ‘A TYC, continued from page 9 the use of his right eye. In a confrontation the next day, six boys were allegedly restrained and put onto the ground outside in a bed of fire ants. Another was thrown into a cinderblock wall; medical examiners said his ribs were so bruised that 24 hours later he could not stand up straight. One guard ordered a boy named David Delgado to pull up his sagging pants to comply with dress code. When Delgado didn’t pull them high enough, the guard cuffed him and took him outside. Delgado says the guard picked him up and threw him headfirst at the ground. He landed several feet away and briefly blacked out. The injury was reported, but it was another 24 hours before Delgado saw a doctor, who noted a sprained neck and a baseball-sized swelling on his head, “consistent with having the head slammed into a hard surface at an angle greater than horizontal.” Delgado, Barefield, and Jackson have filed suit against the TYC, charging excessive force. Each is seeking damages between $1 million and $2.5 million. At least one former Evins inmate, Pierre Sanchez, plans to file suit against TYC this month. Sanchez alleges guards cuffed him and left him outside for several hours. When the skin on one side of his body turned red with sunburn, guards turned him over so the other side burned as well. Sanchez says he was lying on an ant nest and was bitten hundreds of times, but guards refused to move him. Medical examiners found injuries on many other boys, but investigators were unable to discover definitively when and how the damage took place, and did not confirm abuse. In the months that followed, TYC investigators found evidence of abuse, unnecessary force, and other policy violations among 14 TYC staff. The guards who manhandled Barefield and Delgado lost their jobs. Four more staff, including Superintendent Roach, resigned rather than accept discipline. According to TYC records, Roach became involved in physical restraint: He called a known leader of one of the black gangs into the group room with him, where the boy says Roach shoved him repeatedly into the wall, then put an arm around his neck and choked him until other staff arrived. Investigators did not confirm the choking charge, but found two charges of excessive force against Roach for pushing that boy and another into walls. When the charges surfaced, Roach retired. \(Current Evins Supervisor Bart Caldwell says that when TYC investigators confirmed abuse, the agency turned the names of the alleged abusers over to Hidalgo County authorities. At the end of May, county records indicated none Garza, the Evins worker, claims to have reported abuse to Evins administrators repeatedly over that long week, but says they ignored her. “There was really nobody to report to,” Garza says. “They all knew, and they didn’t care.” Desperate, Garza began calling the parents of her caseload boys, tell 16 THE TEXAS OBSERVER JUNE 16, 2006