Student Dies, Surveillance Ignored Until Too Late

Author: Carlton Purvis, Published on Apr 03, 2014

The body of an autistic student washed up on a river near Queens, NY after the boy escaped his school. Surveillance cameras were used to show how he escaped but security holes allowed him to get out.

In this note, we look at the role camera placement and surveillance retrieval played in the Avonte Oquendo case from the findings of an investigative report.

*** **** ** ** ******** ******* ****** ** ** * river **** ******, ** ***** *** *** ******* *** ******. Surveillance ******* **** **** ** **** *** ** ********** ******** ***** ******* *** ** *** ***.

** **** ****, ** **** ** *** **** ****** ********* and ************ ********* ****** ** **************** **** **** *** ******** ** ** ************* ******.

[***************]

**********

****** ******* *** * **-****-*** ***-****** ******** ******* **** * penchant *** ******** **** *********. *** ****** ******** *** *********** ******, * ****** *** ******** **** ************, ** **** ******, New **** ****** ** ******* *** **** * ***** ** learn ***** ** ***** ** ********** **** ** *** ***. His ****** ****** *** ****** ** **** ** *** ** him *** ** **** **** ** **** ***** ************* **** him ******* ** “**** ***** *** ********.”

******** *** ****** *** ***** *** ****** ***** ** ******* 4, ****, **** ** *******. *** **** ****** ** **** Queens ***** ****** *****. ******* ********* ********** ** ********* * ***** ** *****.

*** ******* ************ ** ************* *** *** *** **** **** schools ******** *** ************* **** *** ******** *** ***** *** school *** *** ****** *** *** *********. *** ****** **** shows ******* ***** **** ****** ** *** ****** ***** **** looked ** *** ******* ******.

Problem ********* ************ *******

***** ** ********** ******* ****** *** *******, ** *** ** the ******** *** *** ******** ** ****** *** ******* *** the ********* *** *** *** **** **** *** *** *** not ****** ***** ***** **** *********.

Cameras ******** ******

*** ********* ** ******* ** ***** ***** *** ** **** sides ** ********* *** ***** ******* *** ****** ** ******** Avonte's ***** ** ****** **** ******** **** **** *** ***** to ******* *** ********.

*** ************* *** ******* ****** ****** **** **** ******** ** location, ************ ** ***** * ******** ***** *** ******** *** eventually ****** *** *** *** ** ** **** **** ***** buses *******. ** ******** ****** ******** *** ******* **** *** street *** *** ** *****:

** *** ***** ******* **** ****** *** ******* ***** *********. Surveillance ***** ***** * ******* ******** **** **** *** **** of *** ***** ** ******** *** ***********, ********* ** *** investigation. *** ********** **** ***** *** *******, *** **** *** catches ** ** *** ***** ** *** *********, ******* *******, Avonte, ** *******.

***** *** ******* ** **:**, *** *** ****** *** *** locked ****, ******* ** ************* ****** ** ***** ***** *** students. * ******** ******* ** *** ****** **** *** *** a ******* **** *** ***** ******** *******, *** *** **** up ******* **** *** ****** ** *** ******* *** **** down *** *******. **** ******* *** ***** ********** ** ******.

The **** ****

*** *** ****** **** ** **** **** ** * ****** where ***** *** ******* ******? ************ ***** ***** "** ***** male ******* *** ***** ***** ******** ... ******* **** *** bus *******, *** ******* *** ******** ******* *** ********** ****** bus ****. ** *** *** ***** *** **** ****** *** and, ************* ** ******* *****, ****** **** *** ******** ******* the **** ****,” *** ****** ****.

**** ** **** *****:

*** ********’* **** ****** ** ****, *** ** *** * **** **** ****** *** ****** officer ******* *** **** **** *** ****** **.

*** *** *** **** *** **** **** *** ******* ** be * ********** ***** **** ** *** ******, *** ************* found **** *** ********** *** *** *** ** *** **** until **** *****. *** ****** ***** ** *** ***** ******* unidentified.

Footage **** ******

** *** ***** **** ***** *****, **** ** *** ***** hasn’t **** **** ******. ******’* ****** *** *********** ****** ** *** ********* ********** **** ******.

Cameras ***’* ** *** **** ******** *******

**** *** *** ******* ** *** **** ****, **’* ***** a ******* **** ******** ** ****** ***** ** *** *** of *** ********. ****** **** *** **** ******** ***** **** cameras *** **** **** *** ** *** *** ****.

**** ** * **** ** ***** ******** **** ****** ********* cameras ***** **** **** **** *********. *** ************ ****** *** everything ** *** ******** **. *** ******* ******** ******** ********. All ** *** ******* **** ***********. ** *** ******** ***** have **** ****** **** *********** **** ** **** *******, **’* possible **** ***** **** ********* *** ** *** ******** *** used ******* ** **** ***. **** ***** *** ****.

*************, ******* ******** ******, * ****** ******* *** **** ** the *** **** ****, *** ***** *******. ********* **** ***** have ******** **** ********* ** ***** **** **** ******.

Comments (4)

....... and a properly functioning door closer.

This is a tough one. Schools may look a lot like prisons these days, but there're not designed to be such. An access control system with door monitor could have warned about a door hanging open. As far as escaping, what else can you do about someone with a penchant for running off short of putting a leash on the poor kid? All these solutions, cameras, access controls, cost money in a world where we already shortchange education and special needs.

One failing you could point to is maybe the supervising adult failing to keep at regular intervals, but we don't know the whole story there, either.

I don't think more cameras or the proper access to them would have prevented this situation. It sounds like the school got access to the recorded video within a reasonable amount of time to aid their search, and that getting the footage earlier probably would not have changed the outcome.

Are there corrective steps the school can now take to reduce the risk of this type of event occurring in the future? Probably. Will they completely remove the risk? Probably not. Do they have liability here? I'm thinking no. Do accidents like this happen? Every day, unfortunately.

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