LAS VEGAS (KSNV MyNews3.com) – Another teenager who says he was hogtied by state employees at an Elko youth detention facility plans to join in a lawsuit against those he says abused him.
D’Mycole Boxley, 19, admits he’s broken the law and made bad choices, and he accepts responsibility for why he’s in lock up in the first place.
What he won’t concede to is that he somehow deserved to be hog-tied, a practice many in law enforcement abandoned years ago, calling the practice inhumane.
Boxley says staffers at the state-run youth detention facility in Elko told him, “We’re red neck hillbillies. This is the way we run it,’ to explain the reason for hog-tying him – a restraint practice that puts the subject in an inverted fetal position. It is a practice that has been blamed for asphyxiation deaths in other cases around the country.
“It’s tight like when you go underwater, hold breath, it hurts like that,” Boxley said of the experience. “It makes your bones feel like they are fixing to snap.”
Boxley tells News 3 guards at Elko started hog-tying him when he was 17, and the incidents increased after he reported the abuse.
Boxley says he believes race played a part in what happened, saying those who live in Elko don’t understand kids of color and felt a license to hurt non-white youth offenders.
Daniel Vargas, another youth offender, is suing the state. His attorney, Al Lasso, provided a copy of a civil rights lawsuit, naming heavy hitters in the state capital and saying his client was choked, beaten and bloodied.
Boxley says when he reported the hog-tying, officials at Elko said that Family Court Judge William Voy knew how they were running the program and wouldn’t help.
Instead, late last month, Voy pulled 12 Clark County youth offenders out of the Elko facility after accounts of abuse began to surface and had strong words and promises toward state officials, up to and including Gov. Brian Sandoval.
Those named in the lawsuit have not yet responded to requests for comment.