His mother hoped that the arrest would enable her to get help for her child. In a system where the proper placement for him would be evaluation and properly detoxing a treatment center, the system only could offer her a placement in the local detention center where he would enter a youth population consisting of a mix of criminal youth and youth suffering from either addiction or mental issues.
This lead to his tragic death when a fight broke lose between him and another inmate at the understaffed and overbooked facility.
It is a terrible loss for a mother to receive when all she did was to reach out for the only service the society could offer her regarding her sons struggle.
Addiction - in his case according to media reports cold pills and content from spray cans - is an illness. Illness should be treated - not punished.
But that was what the society could offer her. He lost his life. His mother lost her son.
May he find peace where he is now.
- Sent to jail for help, teen killed (St. Petersburg Times)
- Pinellas County teen dies after fight in detention center (The Florida Times-Union)