Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Court hearing re Justin Caldwell's abuse at Dozier: Interview with Mark Caldwell

April 17, 2007

Rick Reno, attorney for Justin Caldwell, asked the Judge for 60-day extension - his extension was granted. Mr. Reno needs more time to prepare his case, he said. Mr. Reno believes Justin has a very strong Civil Rights case.

After the hearing in Marianna, Mr. Caldwell drove to see his son at Jackson County Jail - across the street from Dozier school for Boys where his son was abused. He was asked to go to Dozier to speak with the administrators there. Mr. Caldwell said the atmosphere at Dozier had changed dramatically. There was more calm, the boys appeared less stressed. He learned that all of the boys know what is happening and are thankful for the stand Mr. Caldwell has taken to advocate for these children.

Mr.Caldwell met with Isaac Williams - Mr. Williams was one of the new adminstrators hired from an outside group to monitor the program "24/7" said Mr. Caldwell. "I told him Justin's story, how he was abused when he was young and how I didn't know about it. And how Justin has been locked up in this system for 5 years, abused and mistreated. Mr. Williams didn't know what to say other than he felt like crying," said Mr. Caldwell.

Department of Juvenile Justice Administrator, Rex Uberman, was there as well. Mr. Uberman indicated he does not want Justin back at Dozier, that he wants him to go home with his father.

Dozier has been in the spotlight before. Just recently six employees were terminated after a sex scandal swept the facility. Four more have been terminated as a direct result of the abuse suffered by Justin. Mr. Uberman said more will be fired, some will brought up on charges of child abuse and on failure to report abuse they witnessed.

Mr. Caldwell had a chance to share his thoughts about what he believes is wrong at Dozier. He told Mr. Uberman and Mr. Williams that the length of stay for many of these boys is excessive. Uberman said they are addressing this issue and that they will need to work with Judges because it is the Judges who are sentencing these boys for long periods of time. However, that is only partially true, as we have seen in Justin's case and in Christopher Sholly's case. Often times the boys are sentenced for a period of time and their time is extended repeatedly. Uberman said it will take a team effort. He agreed that while some kids need incarceration, others can be helped through counseling at home, with their families.

Mr. Caldwell also addressed the issue of telephone calls. Parents receive calls from their children through a phone system and are charged an average of $20 for each 10 minute call. Sometimes, Justin likes to call his father three times in an evening. At that rate, Mr. Caldwell is spending $60 per day to talk to his own son while he could be placing the call himself though a long-distance service with unlimited long-distance calling. This has resulted in some parents not being able to speak to their children as much as they would like. Uberman said this issue will also be addressed. Parents should be encouraged, not discouraged, from speaking to their children. Parent and family involvement is a very important part of the healing process for these children and isolating them from their families does not serve to help them.

We believe progress is being made - we must press forward to be sure that changes continue to be made, that those responsible for abusing children are fired from their jobs, are not allowed to work with children in the future, and are prosecuted to the extent of the law. Those who witnessed the abuse and did not report it should, too, be held responsible for their actions.

CAICA believes that together we can - and do - make a difference.

Monday, April 16, 2007

More from Dawn Chase

From: "Willow Dawn"

Dear Mr. McNeil, (Secretary of DJJ)

I was told that an Investigator had asked Justin Caldwell about any knowledge of contraband being bought into Dozier, and he replied that he does know of it. My son Christopher Sholly had first hand account of this. Here is an entry, and date of that I found in his diary.

This is a Ms. Harvey or Harvy.. female staff officer there.


Dawn Chase

Here is the entry....


Aurther G Dozier School for Boys
Another attempt to mess with my time Aurther G Dozier School for Boys, Marianna FL

Today, Ms. Harvy tried to set me up. She tried to get tobacco dip planted on me. She sent a group of offenders over to me on the rec field. I and Anthony Johnson were sitting under a tree talking. The offenders she sent over to us to post up around us, were: Williams, Brown, McClain, Hammonds, and Nolen. They came around us, and surrounded us. Williams and McClain went behind us poking around on the ground. They dropped something on the ground, then picked it back up and said, "YEAHHHHHH we got you... What this??? I said, "I don't know, what is it?" They all went running over to Ms. Harvy and told her they got it, that we, Anthony and I had it (the dip). This happened around 5:00 PM. Ms. Harvy said, "SHOLLY, YOU HAD THIS???" I told her "NO, I didn't", what is it???" For one, I don't use tobacco in any form, and two, this is just another attempt to mess with my time in a program, and get back at me for telling my Mom about all the abuse they were doing.

Letter from mother, Dawn Chase

From: Secretary DJJ
Date: 4/16/2007 6:44:47 AM
To: Willow Dawn; Secretary DJJ
Cc: Isabelle Zehnder; Mark Caldwell; Cathy Cory
Subject: RE: Abuse at Dozier Justin Caldwell, Christopher Sholly


-----Original Message-----
From: Willow Dawn [mailto:willowdawn1962@aol.com]
Sent: Monday, April 16, 2007 1:41 AM
To: Secretary DJJ
Cc: Isabelle Zehnder; Mark Caldwell; Cathy Cory
Subject: Abuse at Dozier Justin Caldwell, Christopher Sholly

Dear Mr. McNeil,

I'm also writing to you due to the horrible abuse my son and other's have suffered while in DJJ, This includes the facilities Of Dozier, Greenville HIlls Academy, and Okaloosa Youth Development Center.

There are names that have been named years ago by my Son, and these Staff members are mentioned in his Diary.

Here is a direct link to my Son's diary. I now have a law suite pending against this State for the cruel and inhumane Treatment that has left my son suffering now with severe emotional problems, and has been diagnosed with Post traumatic Stress disorder, and is now on medication and treatment under a Doctors care.

For years I have tried to tell this Department of all the abuse and treatment that my son went through, and What he also witnessed. My son was also falsely accused of hitting a staff member with only 20 days left till he Was to come home. He too was direct filed into the adult system at the age of 17, and suffered in Indian River
Correctional Institute, where he was beaten. I cannot believe the gross treatment and neglect that our youth suffer from in this state, and many of them in for Minor "KID" actions.

Please read my Son's diary

You may then scroll down, and read his entries also here..

The names I have of those that abused my son, and his story about how they abused him are in his diary.. I'll list them here as well. These men and woman need to be removed from our facilities.

Greenville Hills Merrit Cottage 2002

Mr. Jones
Damien Choice
Mr. Bleu (Blue)
Ms. Thompson
Rodney Baynard
Mr. Mactear
Ms. Dickie
Ms. Hopkins
Mr. Joseph
Mr. Williams

John Tallon at this time, he was the Northwest Regional Director
Okaloosa Development Center

Mr. Robinson
Mr. Winston
Marvin Bliss

Dozier School for boys

Mr. Miller
Mr. Zanders
Mr. Spears
Mr. Spates(Speight)??? Spelling
Ms. Harvey
Timothy Justice
Gavin Tucker
ED LEEKS... he has since retired, and needs to have his pension taken from him!!
Mr. Williams this is the staff member that accused my son of hitting him... where the tape came up missing or was
un viewable.
JC White

I will be calling these facilities to make sure they are fired from DJJ, with a NO REHIRE classification, and I want charges bought up on the people that my son mentioned.

I also would like to be able to reach some of the boys that were abused by staff that were mentioned. I and my attorney need to contact Tyler Clarrey, and Anthony Johnson.

Some of these staff have even been promoted to superintendants since their abuse of my son and others. Some have been transferred to other facilities, and I do know where some are.

I will be giving my son's story to the media as well. These people are the scum of DJJ, and they don't care about these kids. They do nothing but hurt them, mentally and physically. As of now.. my son will never be able to hold a job and keep it.
He is on SSI as well. I intend to make sure DJJ and this rotten State compensate him and his family for what you all put us all through!!!!!!!!! I will never stop and will work to make sure a major reform of all policies and programs are fixed and changed! I am in close contact with Mark Caldwell, and will go to Tallahassee with him if and when the time comes. Something has got to change.. these kids need to be given an amount of time in a program, and come home... not have any extentions or starting over!!! The staff need to know that should they lay a hand on any child, charges will be pressed.

I'm sick of hearing of all the abuse going on. I sat in on a conference call with John Tallon, Timothy Justice, a few weeks ago,concerning Justin Caldwell, and told them that I knew exactly what they were doing, and they both lied to me, stating that they would make sure that an honest investigation would be done.. I see now that at the beginning of it, this was not done, and they were going to sweep everything under the rug as they did to my son as well.

When a parent rocks the boat, and reports abuse going on.. wether it is on their own child or another as I did and Mark Caldwell did, retaliation, and false charges are pressed on the child. Abuse anywhere should be reported without the fear or retaliation.

This abuse has been going on at Dozier for many years. A well known Author by the name of Roger Kiser, who writes in the books "chicken soup for the soul" was a boy at Dozier... abused severely as well. He has writeen testimony on this.

It is up to you to make changes in all policies and procedure. If things do not change, then there will be more abused children, and more deaths.

I intend to sue this state on behalf of my son, and I won't stop there till major changes are made.

Mark Caldwell has also contacted Vice President Dick Cheaney and he is well aware of the atrocities here in the Florida DJJ system... It does not work. If you wish to speak to me, I would appreciate your call.

Dawn Chase
Christopher Sholly's Mother

Justin Caldwell - abused at Florida DJJ

Letter from father:

Please help me and so many others who have children in the Fl. Department of juvenile Justice system, here are copies of emails that I have just sent to Florida Gov. Crist and the FBI, also I have sent copies to the White House, Fl.Senate, Florida DJJ, Florida state Department of Justice, and others etc.

I am starting to get responses back and some are helping, they are starting an investigation March 6, 2007. The Aurthur G. Dozier School For Boys needs to be investigated, the staff abuse the children they are supposed to help, then file false reports tocover tracks and sometimes file charges on boys that committed no offense just to cover up or get rid of them and pass them around to other detention facilities to keep Federal money in Florida department of Juvenile Justice hands, it creates jobs for the abusive animals who are paid to care for our children these are adolesant teens who are already trying to cope with alot of other issues let alone abuse.

Any help at all would be appreciated!!

Thank you for your time!!!

Sincerely, Mark Caldwell

My address personal info is included in this email, and here are 2 links:



The 2nd link shows what a man is capable of doing to a young boy and it still goes on,just in other ways!

Again Thank you!!!


Dear Mr. Crist,

My son is currently in Arthur G. Dozier School for Boy's he has been incarcerated since he was 13 year's old, he is now 18 years old, my son is being abused as are other's, by staff member's at Dozier, they are falsifying report's and have gotten by with it until now, because I am getting involved, this is an attempt to get your help on this matter, before I seek it elsewhere. There needs to be an investigation, there are many witnesses. The latest abuse of my son included his head being repeatedly banged on a concrete floor 2 time's in 1 week, the 2nd time he lost consciousness and was taken to Jackson County hospital in Marianna Fl. and received a cat scan. There are witnesses to both incidents, of course the staff say he banged his own head on the floor, but ask where the tape is from ISP the night of the second incident, 10 to 1 they do not have it. Now of course there's the superintendent Mr. Timothy Justice, who will definitely butter it all up real nice, I see right through him, he is a liar, Period.There are too many incident's to list, and a lot of false report's, again, this is an attempt to get your support on this dangerous matter, and I will prove it with or without your support, because I will go on up, however, I would rather have your help, I want help!

My only child in this World is in Dozier being abused by the one's who are paid to help him. He should havealready been home but staff member's keep antagonizing him into more time, and nothing else better happen to him,{my son} or I will not stop until Dozier is shut down.I hope you find this to be a serious matter Sir, and thank you for your time!

My son's name is Justin Caldwell and my name is Mark Caldwell, sincerely the same!


Thursday Feb 22nd 2007


FBI :To whom it may concern,

My name is Mark Caldwell, I am the father of Justin Caldwell who is being mentally and physically abused at Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys in Marianna Florida.He was originally incarcerated at the Elaine Gordon Treatment Facility for Boys, in Broward County Florida for a treatment program lasting for 12 to 15 months this was at the age of 13 [ 2002 ] after approx. one year and an arm broken by a staff member he was transfered to Dozier where he is still incarcerated.

While at Dozier he has had his face smashed into a door by Mr. Miller a staff member who also threatened to kill him twice.My son has been " Choked Out " which means choked from behind until he looses consciousness so many times he does not remember. He has witnessed the abuse of other juveniles as well, and approx 3 weeks ago he had his head banged repeatedly on a concrete floor on 2 different occasions the 2nd of which he had to go to Jackson county hospital for a Cat Scan because he lost consciousness.

The first incident happened in the dinning hall when Justin brushed by a staff member named Mr. Wooten who became irritated and took Justin to the floor put his hands around Justin's neck choked him and began banging Justin's head on the floor, because it happened in the dinning hall there are many witnesses, and a staff member Mr. Spears later told Justin that Mr. Wooten used excessive force.

The 2nd incident occurred in Roosevelt Cottage when a staff member by the first name of Albert ask Justin to stand up, then said are you going to sit down Caldwell, to which Justin replied you just asked me to stand up sir, the staff then grabbed Justin by the throat and kicked Justin's feet out from under him, taking Justin to the floor with his hands around Justin's neck, him being Albert the staff member began banging Justin's head on the concrete floor, staff member then got off of Justin, when Justin stood up he said he felt dizzy and fell into another staff members arms.

He then remembers waking up in the middle of the floor and he heard a staff member ask Albert if he was scared this is when staff was called to take Justin to the hospital.There are many things that happen like this at Dozier frequently, and there are witnesses and there is also a staff member named Latoya Terri that witnessed an incident and the falsifying of reports and she has been fired.

There are to many incidents of abuse to write about you need to talk to Justin Caldwell and the other youth at Dozier. My son and the other youth at Dozier are supposed to receive help and this is abuse instead and it is criminal to treat our children this way!

Please help my son!

Mark Caldwell
Email : caldwell7233@gulftel.com
Phone : 251-947-9477


Well my son Justin Caldwell went to court today for his arraignment, he pleaded not guilty, and refused a public defender, which is what I wanted him to do. They set his next court date for April 10th 2007 in Marianna Fl., on the charge of "battery on a detention staff", when in fact the detention staff, Mr. Wooten assaulted my son, now I need help with an attorney, my son is innocent of this cover up charge, and not an attorney from Marianna fl. I believe they are with the judge, or buddy,buddy, my son also said they said he would be facing 5 more years if found guilty, so I need help, my son told me the judge was already shaking his head and saying, no, no, no, when he tried to speak!!!

Sincerely Mark Caldwell