TALLAHASSEESuit says mental patients mistreated

A lawsuit alleges that a state facility in Chattahoochee has mistreated mental patients accused of crimes by putting them in solitary confinement and strapping them into chairs.

Two advocacy groups sued last week in U.S. District Court in Tallahassee, the Tallahassee Democrat reported Tuesday.

The suit also alleges that the Agency for Persons with Disabilities offers little rehabilitation to such patients.

Charles Ball, superintendent of the agency's Mentally Retarded Defendant Program, said restraint and confinement are used only when someone becomes dangerous.

Florida International Legal Services and Disability Rights Florida are not seeking monetary damages. They want a court order declaring that the patients' constitutional rights are being violated and directing the program to change its practices.

The groups sued on behalf of more than 60 people in the program, although only three are listed in the complaint.

St. Petersburg

After caller hangs up, police find weapons

Police found a loaded AK-47 and two loaded handguns in the back yard of a home, but no one to claim them, after receiving a 911 hangup call late Monday, police said.

Police traced the call to the 2400 block of Eighth Street S. During the cell phone call, a dispatcher heard kids laughing and playing in the background. The approximate location of the call was triangulated by using cell phone towers. Police were processing the weapons for fingerprints. If they get a match, "someone's going to have to do some explaining," said police spokesman Mike Puetz.

TALLAHASSEE

JLF University accused of defrauding students

Attorney General Pam Bondi has accused JLF University of defrauding nursing and medical students.

Bondi made the allegations in a lawsuit Tuesday against the Miramar-based school. Graduates have been denied licenses because the school's nursing and medical programs are unaccredited.

OCALA

Hammer hits bullet, bullet hits brother

A 4-year-old Ocala boy was grazed in the head by a bullet that his 10-year-old brother hit with a hammer, authorities said.

The older boy told Marion County deputies he found the .22-caliber bullets in the garage Sunday. He hit one with a hammer. When it fell apart, he hit another. The boy said he heard a loud bang and the bullet hit his brother, who was treated at a hospital.

Associated Press, Times staff

TALLAHASSEESuit says mental patients mistreated 05/10/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, May 10, 2011 11:47pm]

    

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