The graphic videos above shows images of an 18-year-old being tied down and shocked 31 times as he screamed in pain.
The footage was presented by lawyers of Andre McCollins, who is sued the Judge Rotenberg Center for developmentally disabled students, which treated him in part by attaching electrodes to his body and shocking him. The incident recorded on video took place in 2002 after McCollins refused to take off his coat, according to MyFox Boston.
The station reports that lawyers for the center fought to keep the public from seeing the video, but a judge denied their request. “These are dramatic tapes, there’s no question about that,” Edward Hinchey, an attorney who represents two of the Rotenberg Center’s clinicians said. “But the treatment plan at the Rotenberg Center, the treatment plan that Andre had in place was followed.”
The lawsuit was just one of several ongoing investigations and lawsuits involving the center, which remains open, according to Mother Jones magazine.
On its site, the center insists that “JRC relies primarily on the use of positive programming and educational procedures to modify the behaviors of its students. If however, after giving these procedures a trial for an average of eleven months, they prove to be insufficiently effective, JRC then considers supplementing them with more intensive treatment procedures known as aversives.”
The center contends that these procedures are only administered after “prior parental, medical, psychiatric, human rights, peer review and individual approval from a Massachusetts Probate Court.”
In a 2007 exposé on the center, Mother Jones reported that, “Of the 234 current residents, about half are wired to receive shocks, including some as young as nine or ten.”
Mother Jones also notes that the center is the only facility that uses shocks to discipline students, “a form of punishment not inflicted on serial killers or child molesters or any of the 2.2 million inmates now incarcerated in U.S. jails and prisons.”
On April 25, 2012 the parties in the case reached a settlement with the school. The terms of the agreement were not disclosed.
- The Shocking Truth -By Paul Fix | Boston Magazine
- “School of Shock” Founder Forced to Resign -By Jen Quraishi | Mother Jones
- Time for Mass. Lawmakers to Close Abusive Judge Rotenberg Center -By Lucy Berrington | Boston Globe
- UN Condemns Use of Shock Treatment and Torture at Judge Rotenberg Center, Report of the Special Rapporteur on the Right to Education, Kishore Singh (Addendem), A/HRC/17/29/Add.1 (See Section II, Paras 108-116)
- Anonymous – A Message to the Judge Rotenberg Center
- Judge Rotenberg Educational Center: Please Stop Painful Electric Shocks on Your Students | Change.org (Petition, Please sign)