Published on May 4th, 2012 | by Kim LaCapria0
Abandoned DEA Prisoner to Sue For $20M
Earlier this week, a story unfolded on the web that was so horrifying as to be nearly unbelievable, about a college student swept into a DEA investigation and forgotten in a cell for five days by authorities.
UC San Diego student Daniel Chong had been hitting up a 4/20 party with friends when the Drug Enforcement Agency barged in and raided the joint. Although Chong had been questioned and promised release, he was then led to a tiny cell, where he remained for the better part of a week- without any sort of provisions to survive and, obviously, unable to escape.
In his five-day stint in prison, Chong was forced to drink his own urine to avoid dehydration, and broke his glasses in order to attempt suicide by consuming the lenses. In a state of heightened stress, the UC San Diego student also carved “sorry mom” into the flesh of his arm and consumed a white powder he found in the cell that was later revealed to be meth.
A $20 million claim filed on behalf of Chong on Wednesday described the incident as torture by several legal definitions, and it read in part:
“The deprivation of food and water for four and one-half days while the person is handcuffed the entire time constitutes torture under both international and domestic law.”
Earlier in the week, the DEA acknowledged that the incident was being investigated, but Chong was not mentioned by name. Special agent William Sherman said:
“I am deeply troubled by the incident that occurred here last week. I extend my deepest apologies to the young man and want to express that this event is not indicative of the high standards that I hold my employees to. I have personally ordered an extensive review of our policies and procedures.”
Chong spent five days in the hospital recovering from his ordeal.