'The Factor' talks to Jon Hammar's father
The father of former Marine who was imprisoned in Mexico gives an update on his son's health
- Duration 12:35
- Date Jan 4, 2013
The father of former Marine who was imprisoned in Mexico gives an update on his son's health
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Hi I'm Bill O'Reilly thanks for watching us and -- know talking points memo this evening be -- we have a very disturbing situation on our hands.
We were supposed to have former marine corporal John hammer on the program tonight.
But at the last minute at the last minute he simply could not do the -- -- as you may know the corporal has been through a very terrible -- deal.
Returning from Iraq and Afghanistan with posttraumatic stress disorder then.
Last August he was imprisoned in Mexico on bogus gun charges after trying to register shotgun with border authorities in Matamoros.
The State Department couldn't get him out of prison prison Obama took no notice.
Well we got involved and four days before Christmas the Mexican government finally -- Jon -- But then he was hospitalized in the USA is doctor telling us last night that his physical condition was awful.
Well today things became K Iraq.
Joining us now from Miami is his father John -- senior personal mr.
hammer I think -- -- for all Americans when I say.
Very sorry for the ordeal your family is experiencing and will do all we can here to help you.
But John was supposed to talk with -- night.
Going along pretty good dead in the last couple days.
Interviews over the phone to thank.
People for all that they had done.
You know to help get him out.
And I think the probably after.
You know and couple days of that this afternoon and it today you know he he -- off to get some some clothes and -- -- -- and then when he came back.
I think the pressure got to him a little bit and he's not -- -- great right now physically.
But mentally I think -- gonna have to take a break for second okay.
Is it is it painful for him to talk about what happen to him in Mexico.
Well -- he is definitely apprehensive I mean we've gone over.
With him and he's gone over with some friends he trusts.
You know about you know what's appropriate.
For him that say publicly and you know it's a scary situation you know he doesn't want to bring.
You know any.
You know danger -- on two.
You know his family or himself in the future in.
You know it's a tough situation down there because.
You know you're dealing with.
Cries -- authoritative.
People and and and and you're dealing with the Mexican authorities in so you're not sure who you're really -- with.
Well I understand he was threatened in prison.
He said that himself to the McClatchy news service that he was threatened with decapitation.
Mean by fellow prisoners that's that's true right.
And also the prison down -- Matamoros is.
Infested with the low status who who are drug dealing gang.
Who kill people who with impunity -- -- it -- murder people.
So this is the apprehension that he is want to see too much about that because he fears reprisals from south of the border.
-- well there's always that -- -- And you know.
He he there were you know comments as he was leaving indicating -- that that you know I I think he wants to get.
You know he wants to thank you and he wants to thank the American public.
You know for helping him get out but he -- want to do it in a way that you know make sense for -- -- -- and then.
It was certainly we understand that but we are concerned because he'd.
Had to go.
The post traumatic stress disorder place in Napa.
California -- You know and he's fragile I mean look anybody would be a tough marine but anybody incarcerated.
For four months in in a Mexican -- Would -- gangsters all over the place and and -- would be so we understand perfectly when he's.
And -- he doesn't ever have to talk to me mr.
hammer you know if he wants to and he's ready whenever he's ready we're here for him but we -- try to get through.
The story out to the American public so let's pick it up -- you going down -- to.
Get your son when he came over the border Mexican authorities brought him over the border had a -- to US authorities after this big campaign that we went on.
They finally did right thing -- a couple of days before Christmas few days before Christmas.
What was -- first thing your first impression when you saw your son coming match.
-- You know physically.
They do is shot.
Because he was.
Hunched over you know underneath.
Of going -- you know in the back of this armored suburban that they US consulate had done a great job of getting him.
You know to me in a secure area.
You drove then two Miami why didn't you just hop on a plane and and fly to Florida why did you drive.
-- for you know at first I thought.
You know I wanted some time with them to.
You figure out you know what he needed.
But -- became really clear that -- what he needed it was physical at that point you know he was so sick.
That you know.
You know stomach.
-- and lungs.
You know we didn't we made it to a -- Fiat before we had to go to.
Emergency get to the hospital now for those you didn't see doctor bill in a wave is interviewing me last night the doctors treating.
-- -- He was -- severely dehydrated he was vomiting and diarrhea.
All of this contracted inside the Mexican prison and the doctor said last night I did you see the interview mr.
-- -- on on the my guess I'll get.
Mean he basically said we were lucky to get him out there.
That that if this had gone a mile long how much longer in a Mexican -- might have been debt.
Yeah I didn't.
And we didn't realize you know that and this just came on within the first last few days before we got him out right.
So you know yet but I didn't we didn't realize how how bad off he was did he say anything -- -- I know we had severe headaches and he had diarrhea and who's the head hydrated you know how to go to that.
Lofty -- Louisiana hospital -- did he tell you.
What happened to him in prison in the ride to floor.
Yeah we we we talked about.
We talked about it.
You know there that you know we'd been talking.
You know throughout the ordeal so who is there were few details of that I was not aware of that in general it was pretty.
You know consistent with what I knew -- would you say that did that he's treatment down there was brutal was -- How would you describe it because most Americans have no idea what -- off.
I think it's hard to understand it because.
The facilities that are not.
Wouldn't that we would not consider them.
An actual prison.
You know I it's it's more.
-- the facility to.
You know house.
As they do their business.
-- so it's -- it's not a regulated prison insisted these gangsters are there.
And they're put in there by the government they can run wild and do whatever they want inside the prison so there's danger there -- danger and that's a psychological thing.
Armed but the doctor did tell me that he didn't have enough food he didn't have enough water.
His body was covered with mosquito bites I mean obviously he was changing -- -- a one point everybody's seen that picture.
Obviously this wasn't anything that could have ever happened the United States.
Now it's it's not something that you really.
Can found them you know as a legitimate.
You know -- away confining someone.
How would you describe your -- state of mind now outside of the media know we understand that you know.
It's got to be very very tough to talk about any of this but -- team.
Under control I mean do you think that he has to go back.
May be to the facility and -- Does he need anything.
I think he needs time mostly.
He he he until this afternoon.
You know it it's it's very tenuous.
You feeling for for me anyway.
You know he's he seemed to have pretty normal.
You know who were considering you know -- -- -- then.
You know I I think we're getting better.
That it is tenuous okay.
Has the State Department contact did you anybody from the US government contacted you now now I'm like that -- than.
Ross Clinton's office and you know of his friends that were involved in on our side here in the congresswoman has done a great job but I know she's legitimately concerned as is senator Nelson.
But I you know it's kind of shocking to me that the State Department number one couldn't get him out.
A number two US and even called you and said you know Ozzie doing can we do anything for -- we just a one Afro Americans the way you know what I'm talking about here.
And the only reason Mexicans what amount of first place is because I tell -- if they didn't it was going to be real trouble economically down there for them.
And -- finally he -- the new president got the message and told these guys let him out and bang he's out it's a -- and they tell you that.
What are they doing what only that what exactly did they tell.
The chamber of commerce president and man Morris came to me you know we waited you know.
Half -- day out there you know for them to process them out and he came to me and said John you know you did this is.
This is wrong and -- you know we're gonna do something about this.
And and you know who we're sorry you know you he had to go through.
The press they get this done that you're getting your son back today and we're sorry that you know I got this far.
Do you think you chamber of commerce Mexican in Matamoros was sincere -- Now I think I think he was sincere I.
You know I don't know how much.
He can do yeah -- probably can't do anything but as soon as the big shots in Mexico City.
Realize they were going to be punished by the American people and that's what would have happened all right I mean who already cancellations in to people traveling down there.
Then they said we've got to get this guy out we showed you the hollow in this of the of the whole fabricated charge in the first place the judge you look at finally.
And -- his -- judge I mean it took them more than four months is again in front of a judge judge looked I'm seeing commit a crime and he did.
You know he'd legitimately try to register the antique shotgun and that brings me to my last question.
Why any try to take the -- misses the a lot of people are asking -- why bother taken -- -- into Mexico when you know hole.
It's an out of control country looking to hurt Americans and extort money from Americans.
-- honestly I think it was a little bit naive that he thought that you know he could figure out.
Had a legitimately.
You know crossed Mexico with his campaign year and -- surf boards and Baghdad and as part of his camping gear you know and get too though.
The West Coast.
You know and he wasn't able to navigate that -- want to gun for protection Nauru what was what widened.
The -- -- and it at all.
I think that.
They were trying to get to know off the grid until wilderness area and they were thinking you know if and we.
Decided we wanted to be you know hunt for something -- -- you know we're gonna camp out you know that this would just be part of the adventure I got it.
Part of -- please keep us posted anything we can do for John let us know and we wish you the best.
And we appreciate you coming on tonight and always very difficult day for you and -- -- Thank you so much bill.