Cadaver Trial Convict Allegedly Tormented in Men's Central Jail

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Thu, May 21, 2009 at 3:18 PM

Last October UCLA's former director of its Willed Body Program, Henry Reid, pleaded guilty to running  a criminal enterprise in which he and a collaborator sold body parts to research outfits as though they were hubcaps. In January he was sentenced to nearly four and a half years in state prison for his admission. Today, Celeste Fremon, in her Witness L.A. blog picks up the story and reports some disturbing news about Reid's treatment, based on a phone call she received from Reid's sister.

Reid has been in the Men's Central Jail downtown, awaiting shipment to North Kern State Prison in Delano, from where he would be sent to a final-destination prison. However, his sister, Patricia Vedder, reported getting "a call from a sobbing Henry who said he was naked, that his clothes and glasses had been taken from him, that he had been placed in a 'suicide vest,' and that he was to be transferred to the section of CJ where the 'criminally insane' were kept, and that he would not be permitted visits or phone calls for the next six months."

After much phone calling to jail watch commanders and a prison psychiatrist, Vedder learned the truth.

"It appeared that a guard, or guards," Fremon writes, "had simply been

tormenting him when they took away his glasses and his clothes, and

allegedly told him the story about being sent for six months to a unit

for 'the criminally insane.'"

The 59-year-old Reid, a former musician who played in Mannheim

Steamroller, allegedly was chained to his isolation-unit cell while his

food tray, sans any utensils, was placed just out of his reach.

Fremon's post is part of her aptly titled series, "Dangerous Jails."

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