SALINE COUNTY, Ark. (KATV) — A U.S. district judge has ordered the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) and Department of Homeland Security to review more information after the mother of Kevin Ives submitted Freedom of Information Act requests regarding her son's death.
In 1987, Kevin and Don Henry were found dead on train tracks in Alexander. A state medical examiner initially concluded the two were struck by a train while in a deep sleep induced by marijuana, but another pathologist years later claimed the two boys were killed elsewhere before being placed on the tracks.
Several books and documentaries have featured the case with multiple theories as to how the teenagers died. Kevin Ives' mother, Linda, and her attorney David Lewis believe the teens deaths were the result of them witnessing a drug drop and a cover-up by the CIA. They've spent years trying to obtain files to prove their case but they've continually been met with push back.
Lewis said documents he's received from FOIA requests in the past pertaining to the deaths of Kevin Ives and Don Henry have been so heavily redacted that he claims they're practically useless.
In 2016, Lewis filed a lawsuit against nearly a dozen state and federal agencies claiming violations of the Freedom of Information Act. While two judges recused themselves from the case, it was finally heard by Judge Brian Miller, who ended up dismissing most of the defendants from the lawsuit.
However, Judge Miller ordered the Department of Homeland Security, Drug Enforcement Administration and the Executive Office of U.S. Attorneys to turn over unredacted documents that they believe are exempt from FOIA law for his review.
On August 2, Judge Miller says he had completed an in-camera review with the defendants. He then ordered the DEA to provide Linda Ives with "reasonably segregable information" - or information that is not "inextricably intertwined" with exempt information - in investigative files from May 1983 and January 24 in her son's case.
According to the judge's order, "the DEA is ordered to provide suggested redactions of these documents to the court by August 17, 2018. Should the DEA’s redactions be approved, the documents, as redacted by the DEA, will be produced to Ives. Should the DEA’s redactions fail to be approved, the court will make the redactions and produce the court’s redacted versions to the DEA and permit the DEA to object."
Miller also says the Department of Homeland Security failed to adequately search for information Linda requested on "all records, recordings, documents and emails regarding Mena Airport drug trafficking as they relate to Barry Seal" and is ordered to conduct an adequate search for the information.