Three life coaches and a program director were reportedly caught on video assaulting a teen boy at the Abundant Life Academy in Milford, Va., back in April.
The unidentified 14-year-old boy was said to have been caught taking to a girl; he apparently tried to run away, but was allegedly grabbed and beaten by the four employees, who were charged with assault by mob and assault, reports WTVR.
A surveillance video (below) of the incident was recently released.
After their trial began this week, the four employees (Timothy Jordan, Jovanny Rivera, Carey Honea, Liam Galligan) agreed to a deal with prosecutors and pleaded guilty to simple assault on Thursday. They all got a 12-month suspended sentence.
Three are prohibited from teaching at a school with minors for five years, while Galligan is banned for 10 years.
According to Fredericksburg.com, the teen victim testified in court that following the three-hour assault, he was woken up every 90 minutes by the staff.
Caroline County Sheriff's deputies were originally called in when four teens stole an ATV and escaped from the boarding school earlier this year. After they were caught by deputies, the boys told law enforcement what was going on at the school.
“They are all good men and I don’t think they ever meant to hurt the child,” claimed defense attorney Joseph Brown.
“I think they decided to plead guilty after seeing the evidence against them and realized in all likelihood they were going to be convicted,” countered prosecutor Diane Abato.
The Abundant Life Academy states on its website:
We are a Christian therapeutic boarding school designed for teens who are struggling. Our goal is to provide teens and their families with the tools and resources to thrive academically, relationally and spiritually. We help once troubled teens to begin living a fulfilling life, equipping teens to become happy, confident, self-reliant, and successful adults.