Boot Camp Instructor on Trial Made Kids Carry Tires and Drink Water Until They Puked
A local boot camp instructor on trial for kidnapping, child abuse, extortion and more used disturbing methods for disciplining troubled children in his program.
Videos show kids at the boot camp led by Kelvin McFarland aka "Sgt. Mac" being forced to drink until they puke — and then being forced to drink some more. Another video shows a child in tears being screamed at to carry a tire — the child also nearly pukes. Two videos of McFarland's disturbing methods were obtained by the Pasadena Star-News and can be viewed here.
Until his arrest, McFarland ran the Family 1st Growth Camp in Pasadena and Altadena. He was arrested in May after police said he took one of his students home, after handcuffing him and demanded money for transporting him. They said he also tried to get the parents to enroll the kid in his after school program. Since his arrest, police have been looking into other incidents and allegations of abuse as well, according to the Pasadena Star-News.
Not many people are paying attention to what happens in boot camps — to the detriment of teens, the paper reports. More than 1,600 teens have been abused in boot camp programs since 1990 and 10 have died, according to a 2007 Government Accountability Office report. Boot camp staff members are not trained and they assume kids in pain are faking it. They don't notice until it's too late.