Family suing over shock therapy
Freeport teen's mom alleges Mass. center used excessive shock treatment on her son, violating his civil rightsBY KARLA SCHUSTER
STAFF WRITER; Staff writer Joseph Mallia contributed to this story.
March 14, 2006
The family of a Freeport teenager is accusing the school district of violating his civil rights by sending him to a Massachusetts facility for troubled youths that uses electric shock therapy.
Antwone Nicholson, 17, and his mother, Evelyn, say he has suffered emotional and physical injuries as a result of being repeatedly shocked at the Judge Rotenberg Center in Canton, Mass., according to the notice of their intent to sue the school district filed last week.
The private facility is on the state Department of Education's list of approved out-of-state special education providers, even though electric shock therapy cannot be used as corporal punishment to discipline students in New York. The New York law does, however, permit its use as a therapeutic treatment in some instances.
"We're sending our kids out of state to be tortured," said attorney Ken Mollins of Melville, who is representing the Nicholson family.