Daniel Chong, Left In Holding Cell For 4 Days, Drank Own Urine To Survive
23-year-old, Daniel, a student at the University of California, San Diego, was picked up during a drug sweep. He was never arrested or charged yet they left him in a tiny, windowless DEA holding cell for 4 days.
After two days of being handcuffed and held in a tiny cell, Chong started becoming desperate for food and water. He stopped wondering if someone was going to come and let him out and started thinking how he is going to stay alive.
The overwhelming thirst led Chong to start drinking his own urine. He tried to get some water by setting off the overhead sprinklers. He stacked his clothes and blankets and swimming his handcuffed arms in attempt to trigger them.
Chong spent four days forgotten until the Drug Enforcement Administration agents opened the doors again.
Chong in an interview:
"I just couldn't believe that this was legal, "I'm thinking `no way.'"
Freed, Chong spent five days in a hospital for dehydration, kidney failure, cramps and a perforated esophagus. He lost 15 pounds due to this ordeal.
Chong Lawyers filed a $20 million, max payout claim, on Wednesday against the DEA stating his treatment constitutes torture under U.S. and international law.
William R. Sherman, the top DEA in San Diego, said that he was “deeply troubled by what happened. He also stated that he has personally ordered an extensive review of his office’s policies and procedures!
No one has yet to contact Chong to apologize.
It all started when Chong went over his friend house to get high, a part of an annual event that was held. He ended up spending the night at the friend’s house.
The next morning agents stormed into the house. The raid netted 18,000 ecstasy pills, other drugs and weapons. Nine people, including Chong were taken into custody.
Chong was questioned, agents told him that he was not a suspect and told him they were going to release him shortly. They made him sign some papers He was put in handcuffs then sent to a holding cell.
Chong patiently waited as hours turned into days, he started kicking and screaming as loud as he could to get attention. He even ripped a piece of his jacket off with his teeth and shoved it under the door hoping someone would see him.
Chong did anything to survive; he found some white powder in the cell that he ate. The next day Chong started to hallucinate, he said he saw Japanese animation character who told him to dig into the walls to search for water – he tried. The white powder was later identified as methamphetamine.
Chong was lucky; people usually die within three to seven days of dehydration, according to Dr. Wally Ghurabi at UCLA Medical Center in Santa Monica.