The act is named after 14-year-old Martin Lee Anderson, who suffocated after guards in Bay County stuck ammonia tablets up his nose.
His family is still waiting for someone to be arrested. The family of 14-year-old Martin Lee Anderson arrived for a private meeting at the governor’s office looking somber.
A few minutes later they emerged with Jeb Bush, who publicly expressed sympathy for their loss.
Gov. Jeb Bush said, “Your son won’t come back for that, but you’re gonna be a part of something bigger yourselves.”
Then, with the stroke of his pen, boot camps were abolished and replaced with STAR Academies. Martin’s family, while thankful, still wants arrests.
Gina Jones, Martin Anderson's mother, said, "I'd still like the guards to be accountable for killing my baby, only 14 years old. Martin Lee Anderson.”
Afterward the family was reluctant to talk, but they were confident that Martin would still be alive if the new law had been on the books when he went to the Bay County Boot Camp.
Ben Crump, attorney, said, “Because they wouldn’t have been allowed to use ammonia tablets up his nose. They wouldn’t have been allowed to do these heinous things that they did.”
Jeb Bush continues to say he is frustrated by the pace of the investigation, but he also says that he’s living up to a promise his office made to the family, and that’s checking on the investigation every other day.
Family attorneys say speed isn’t their only concern.
Darryl Parks, attorney, said, “We’re more concerned that there be proper convictions of them than the timing is right.”
Asked about their emotions, the family was speechless.
Anderson’s parents are planning a wrongful death lawsuit against the state, but they say their first concern is to see criminal charges filed against the boot camp guards.