No Charges for Guards Who Allegedly Boiled Prisoner Alive

The state disregarded testimony of Darren Rainey's fellow inmates
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 18, 2017 4:54 PM CDT
No Charges for Guards Who Allegedly Boiled Prisoner Alive
Darren Rainey   (Mugshot)

The state has declined to file criminal charges against four corrections officers who allegedly boiled a schizophrenic inmate alive in a Florida prison shower five years ago, the Miami New Times reports. Darren Rainey was serving time in Dade Correctional Institute for cocaine possession when corrections officers allegedly trapped him in the shower for two hours under 180-degree water. Inmates said they could hear Rainey scream as the guards laughed and asked if the shower was "hot enough." A prison nurse later said there were burns on 90% of Rainey's body and his skin fell off when it was touched. According to the Miami Herald, at least six inmates say the shower was used to punish inmates, many of them mentally ill.

But a report released late Friday by the Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office found no evidence the guards had committed a crime. The report determined Rainey died of a combination of complications from schizophrenia, a heart condition, and being "confined in the shower." But it concluded the guards didn't "grossly disregard" his health. The report mostly relied on an autopsy that has never been made public. It dismissed testimony from inmates, as well as a report from a prison captain who measured the shower's temperature at 160 degrees following Rainey's death. State law caps prison showers at 120 degrees. And prison medical workers say they were pressured to keep quiet by the private contractor that runs the prison. A lawyer for Rainey's family says they are "appalled" by the report. (More inmate deaths stories.)

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