Allegedly tortured while in custody with the DEA
Daniel Chong has received an official apology from the Drug Enforcement Agency for the neglect he suffered over the course of five days, but it somehow just doesn’t seem like enough. Chong was under investigation for involvement with illegal drugs and after being locked in a cell for five days without food or water had to resort to drinking his own urine in order to survive.
Handcuffed the entire four days, Chong began to suffer from hallucinations. According to the San Diego Associated Press Chong urinated on a metal bench in order to drink his own urine with limited mobility.
With the realization that he was trapped in a windowless room with muffled sound he began to panic and act with means of getting DEA officials to notice him as he was sure he was forgotten. According official reports he stacked a blanket along with his pants and shoes on the facility bench in his cell in an attempt to set the fire sprinkler off with his cuffed hands by standing on the items. He had no luck.
After four days with no food, water or toilet Chong had accepted death at the young age of 23 and decided to bite into his eyeglasses to use the glass shards to carve “Sorry Mom” into his arm as his final message to the outside world.
Later that same day a DEA agent found Chong covered in his own fecal matter with a wound on his arm. Chong was then immediately taken to a hospital where he spent five days recovering from dehydration, kidney failure, cramps and a perforated esophagus. Reports conclude he also lost fifteen pounds over the course of his facility stay.
Law enforcement officials have been closed-mouthed about the situation because of the ongoing investigation but one comment was made that Chong was not going to be charged with a crime and he should have been released. Chong claims to have no criminal record.
According a federal law enforcement official Chong’s holding was never intended for overnight stay as there was no toilet in his cell.
In a letter to Attorney General Eric Holder, U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer writes:
“Please provide me with the results and the actions the department will take to make sure those responsible are held accountable and that no one in DEA custody will ever again be forced to endure such treatment.”
According to reports Chong said he ingested a white powder found in his cell which agents later identified as methamphetamine. Chong claims he ingested the powder to survive because there was no food in his cell.
UCLA Medical Center’s Dr. Wally Ghurabi commented that people can die from dehydration in as little as three to seven days, and commended Chong for drinking his own urine.
Chong’s attorney filed a $20 million claim on Wednesday, May 2, 2012 against the federal agency with allegations that Chong’s treatment while at the San Diego facility constitutes torture under U.S. and international law.
Interview with Daniel Chong
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