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How Six White Males Killed A Black Teen Using ‘Improper Restraint’ In Residential Treatment Facility

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How Six White Males Killed A Black Teen Using Improper Restraint In Residential Treatment Facility (2)

Cornelius Frederick’s estate is suing Lakeside Academy and ten of its staff for $50 million after the youngster died in April of last year at the residential institution in Kalamazoo, Michigan, after suffering cardiac arrest.

Frederick’s aunt Tenia Goshay, as the estate’s representative, filed the lawsuit on Sept. 30. Frederick was an orphaned ward of the state at the time of the incident, according to records obtained by CNN.

The 16-year-old was “suffocated to death by eight older men after being thrown to the ground for the ‘crime’ of dumping a sandwich on the floor,” according to the federal civil rights lawsuit.

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Fredericks was staying in a program for young people aged 12 to 18 who had been sent there by the foster care system or by their parents or guardians to get mental health services.

He allegedly threw part of lunch in the cafeteria on Wednesday, April 29, 2020. Despite his cries that he was unable to breathe, Lakeside personnel allegedly used an “improper restraint” on the teen and “continued to suffocate him for an extended period of time.”

According to a 2020 report provided to the outlet by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, at least “six to seven male personnel” were on him for roughly 12 minutes.

Frederick eventually had a cardiac arrest and anoxic brain injury, and he became comatose. Later, he was transported to a local hospital and put on life support. He was proclaimed dead two days later, on May 1.

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The claim was brought after the estate’s counsel heard of how the defendants “monetized the business of childcare facilities across the United States,” according to Geoffrey Fieger, an attorney for the estate. “We completely understand the concept of putting money ahead of children,” Fieger remarked.

Sequel Youth and Family Services, the Academy’s owner, was also accused in the case of prioritizing the company over the Academy’s residents, including Frederick, with its motto of “heads in beds.”

According to the lawsuit, Sequel Youth and Family Services “pressured its facilities (and personnel) to run at or over maximum capacity in order to maximize revenues, regardless of the level of care provided to the children” as a “custom, practice, and/or policy.”

Frederick’s death had been blamed on three academy employees. Last year, involuntary manslaughter and second-degree child abuse were charged against Michael Mosley, Zachary Solis, and nurse Heather McLogan.

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McLogan, who told police she didn’t help Frederick right away because she thought he was “faking,” agreed to a plea bargain in July, pleading no guilty to third-degree child abuse. On September 27, she was sentenced to 18 months of probation and consented to testify against Mosley and Solis.

In June 2020, the estate filed a separate state case. It is reportedly seeking $100 million in damages, with a February 2022 trial date set.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced immediately after Frederick’s death that “physical constraints like the ones that cost this young guy his life” would no longer be permitted.

“On May 1, a young man died as a result of shackles improperly applied at a Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) facility,” Director Robert Gordon said at the time. “It was both a tragedy and a scandal.” We won’t be able to bring this young man back to life, but we won’t stop until the system that caused his death is corrected.”

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