CRANFORD, New Jersey — Two New Jersey daycare workers are accused of making the children they’re charged with caring for fight each other for their own amusement. Authorities say they made videos of the scuffles, and shared the video with friends.
Investigators say two former daycare workers referenced the movie “fight club” as they encouraged pre-schoolers and kindergartners to fight each other on the playground at Lightbridge Academy in Cranford, New Jersey.
“About a dozen children, boys and girls, between the ages of four and six just fighting — throwing each other to the ground and hitting each other,” Grace Park, Union County prosecutor said.
Prosecutors say 22-year-old Erica Kenny, one of the teachers assistants charged used the “Snapchat” app to send clips of the disturbing fight to a group of people.
The video only lasts for about 10 seconds and then it disappears, but investigators were able to obtain it after someone recorded it.
“We don’t believe there were any serious injuries — but we are still investigating the case,” Park said.
Prosecutors say the former workers, including Chanese White, did this for pure pleasure.
White’s neighbors are stunned.
“It’s unbelievable!” Pastor James Smith said.
“She was very nice — but you don’t really know anybody really,” Betty Farinelli said.
Jaclyn Falzarano, the daycare’s vice president says Kenny and White were immediately fired.
“Again — what we will like to focus on is all of the children are safe. That is our number one priority. We’ve actually been in constant communication with our parents to let them know that we are here to nurture the care and education of their children,” Falzarano said.
Dolores Tomace works at another daycare facility, and says some of the kids from Lightbridge come there to use the gym.
“The children come in and hug me and I love them. I would never think of doing anything bad to them. They’re mine. For all intents and purposes, they’re all mine,” Tomace said.
Both White and Kenny are charged with child abuse. One of the women is also charged with endangering the welfare of a child.