By: Bailey Myers
September 2nd, 2013
Tallahassee FL- Continuing coverage surrounding the Dozier School for boys excavation has started on the school accused of covering up abuse and sexual assaults. The Florida Department of Law Enforcement started the investigation five years ago, and more people are speaking out about what they say happened there.
FDLE's investigative summary paints a grim portrait for the children who attended this school from the time it opened in 1900 to it's closing in 2011. All of the witnesses questioned had a different recollection of the events that took place during their time there.
Herbert Alexander attended Dozier School for Boys in 1962 and again in '63. He explained one of his experiences, "It's a white building but inside they got a bed and they got leather beside the wall and you lay on that bed and hold that bed and that's where they beat you down."
Herbert Alexander says he was sent to the Dozier School for Boys, and beat during his time there explaining, "So they beat you straight, some of them they couldn't beat straight. Some of them don't last."
The 67-year old was sent to the school twice. He says his time there made him who he is today-- a decorated and proud war veteran. Still, he says there's a dark cloud he cannot erase; "Those crosses that were up there, back then looked like toothpicks. You know they were little sticks with a cross and we would sit up there and think how are these boys going to get home."
That memory encouraged him to contact the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, in hope the families of those boys will find closure. FDLE's investigative findings stated "interviews confirmed... administrators used corporal punishment as a tool to encourage obedience."
Alexander says, "These boys that were left up there they weren't gonna never leave. So now I feel good about it that they taking the bodies and finally taking them home to wherever they came from."
Crews started excavating on the grounds Sunday. Anthropologists believe 19 more bodies-- on top of the 31 believed to be there-- are buried on the grounds. The bodies of 22 others still have not been accounted for.