Man Missing From South Florida Mental Health Facility - NBC 6 South Florida

Man Missing From South Florida Mental Health Facility



    Man Missing From Pines Mental Health Facility

    Ferris Buford Johnson has been missing from South Florida Hospital’s Mental Health Facility in Pembroke Pines since Sunday. NBC 6's Willard Shepard reports.

    (Published Friday, May 17, 2019)

    Family members are desperately searching for a 62-year-old man who they say was seen on surveillance video leaving a Pembroke Pines mental health facility.

    Ferris Buford Johnson disappeared Sunday from South Florida Hospital. His family says no one saw him leave or tried to stop him.

    "I am crying and pleading and asking the public to please help me locate my brother, unharmed and safe," Norvik Myers said Friday at a news conference. "He is a non-violent person."

    Johnson's family said he is no threat, but he is a large man and some may think he's dangerous. They also say he has schizophrenia.

    "He's in need right now of his medication," Myers said. "If anyone sees him, he will not harm you. We just want him back safe.

    Back in 2014, Vivian Mechaber sued the same facility, alleging that her brother Morris Celnikier died from injuries sustained while he was supposed to be under the watch of a caregiver.

    In video footage obtained exclusively by NBC 6 Investigators, Celnikier can be seen falling and hitting his head several times, banging on the walls, and apparently looking for some way out the locked room.

    Celnikier died several weeks later. An employee, Debra Judge-Thomas, was charged with neglect and abuse of an elderly person.

    "They claim to have staff that looks out for the patients here on a constant basis, and they paint it as an infallible facility, but then when there’s a breakdown, they try to shrug it off like it was the patient's fault," said family member Elijah Young.

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