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Last Updated: Wednesday, 28 March 2007, 09:21 GMT 10:21 UK
US boot camp death family settle
Martin Lee Anderson in a photo provided by the Bay County Sheriff's Office
Martin Anderson was beaten on his first day at the camp
Authorities in Florida have been ordered to pay $2.4m (1.2m) to the family of a teenager who died while attending a boot camp in Bay County.

The settlement from Bay County is in addition to $5m the state will pay.

Martin Lee Anderson, aged 14, died after being beaten by seven guards at the camp, which the boy was sent to as punishment for lawbreaking.

His family had been seeking $40m but in the end decided that they did not want to endure two trials.

"The parents did not want to go through two lengthy trials and reliving the traumatic events that surrounded the death of their son," the family's lawyer Ben Crump said.

Ammonia inhalation

Following Anderson's death, which happened shortly after he arrived at the boot camp in January 2006, Florida closed all of its military-style camps for young offenders.

The seven former wardens who beat Anderson and a nurse who watched the incident have been charged with manslaughter over his death.

Footage of Martin Lee Anderson being beaten
Film emerged showing the wardens beating the 14-year-old
An initial post-mortem by Bay County Medical Examiner Dr Charles Siebert said Anderson had died from complications of sickle cell trait.

But that conclusion sparked outrage after a video appeared showing guards surrounding him - some holding him while others apparently hit him.

The boy was seen being knocked to the ground with fists and knees then forced to inhale ammonia capsules held under his nose.


Florida Governor Jeb Bush ordered an investigation that led to a second autopsy.

Dr Vernard Adams, who carried out the second post-mortem, said Anderson died because his mouth was blocked and was forced to inhale ammonia fumes.

The "forced inhalation" caused his vocal cords to spasm and block his upper airways, the Hillsborough County medical examiner concluded.

The guards had said in an incident report that they used ammonia capsules five times on Anderson to gain his co-operation.

The eight accused have pleaded not guilty to manslaughter. They each face sentences of up to 30 years in jail if convicted.

The teenager had been sent to the camp for violating probation by trespassing at a school after he and his cousins were charged with stealing their grandmother's car from a church parking lot.

Staff charged in boot camp death
28 Nov 06 |  Americas
US boot camp guards 'killed boy'
05 May 06 |  Americas

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