HEADLINE: Grand jury to look into Mansfield boot camp death Inquiry set for April 25 to determine whether officials will be Indicted
BYLINE: BOB SCHOBER
BODY: A Tarrant County grand jury will decide whether to indict officials at the Mansfield boot camp in connection with the death of a former inmate, a special prosecutor said Thursday.
Grand jurors will hear evidence April 25 from witnesses and the Texas Rangers' investigation into the death of 18-year-old Bryan Alexander of Arlington, who was an inmate at the boot camp, also known as the Tarrant County Community Correctional Facility.
"We think there is sufficient information for a grand jury to review to determine if a criminal offense has been committed," Brazos County District Attorney Bill Turner said.
The Rangers have been investigating the circumstances surrounding Mr. Alexander's Jan. 9 death from antibiotic-resistant pneumonia, caused by a staphylococcus infection. His father, Rick Alexander, has alleged that his son was denied proper medical treatment at the camp, a contention that boot camp officials deny. Attorney Charles Smith, spokesman for the Alexander family, declined to comment Thursday.
"I want to stay out of Mr. Turner's criminal investigation," Mr. Smith said. "We have, however, supported the independent investigation."
Mr. Smith has notified Correctional Services Corp., which has run the boot camp since it opened in 1992, that the Alexander family may file a civil lawsuit.
A Correctional Services Corp. official said Thursday that a grand jury was the proper venue for consideration of the investigation.
"Professionally, I wouldn't read too much into the fact that it's being presented or not being presented," Vice President William Bryan said. "I've always been a believer in the system, and I believe the grand jury is the appropriate place, rather than one man's opinion that could be endlessly debated."