No charges for workers who dragged, shoved immigrant kids


PHOENIX (AP) — Workers won’t face charges after they were seen on video dragging and shoving immigrant children at a privately run shelter in Arizona, authorities said Friday.

Prosecutors in Maricopa County said there’s no reasonable likelihood of proving the workers committed a crime at the now-shuttered Southwest Key facility near Phoenix.

Prosecutors said none of the three children sustained physical injuries; there was no evidence of intent to injure the children; and they didn’t share any feelings with investigators of being ill-treated.

“Ultimately, prosecutors did not have evidence to prove that any use of force was unreasonable to gain compliance or to establish that the physical health and emotional well-being of the children had been placed in danger,” the Maricopa County Attorney’s Office said in a statement.

The incidents occurred in September and were investigated by the sheriff’s office, which initially didn’t recommend that charges be filed but later reversed course when the Arizona Republic newspaper obtained the videos.

Biden May Have a Trick Up His Sleeve to Win in 2024 - And the Supreme Court Would Have to Get Involved

Texas-based Southwest Key spent most of last year under criticism in Arizona after a series of investigations into abuse of children in its care. The company was eventually forced to shut down two facilities, including the one where the treatment was videotaped.

“Today’s news is an important step forward as we resume our work in Arizona,” said Geraldo Rivera, vice president for immigrant children’s services at the nonprofit. “I’m proud of the progress we’ve made together in the last few months.”

The videos are blurry but show staffers dragging three children on the ground and shoving a boy against a door.

In one video, a staffer is seen sitting at a conference room table, fidgeting with her hair, while another drags a child into the room. The treatment continued even after the child fell to the ground.

The shelter, known as Hacienda del Sol, held immigrant children who came to the U.S. without a parent or in some cases were separated from family.

The Western Journal has not reviewed this Associated Press story prior to publication. Therefore, it may contain editorial bias or may in some other way not meet our normal editorial standards. It is provided to our readers as a service from The Western Journal.

Truth and Accuracy

Submit a Correction →

We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.

The Associated Press is an independent, not-for-profit news cooperative headquartered in New York City. Their teams in over 100 countries tell the world’s stories, from breaking news to investigative reporting. They provide content and services to help engage audiences worldwide, working with companies of all types, from broadcasters to brands. Photo credit: @AP on Twitter
The Associated Press was the first private sector organization in the U.S. to operate on a national scale. Over the past 170 years, they have been first to inform the world of many of history's most important moments, from the assassination of Abraham Lincoln and the bombing of Pearl Harbor to the fall of the Shah of Iran and the death of Pope John Paul.

Today, they operate in 263 locations in more than 100 countries relaying breaking news, covering war and conflict and producing enterprise reports that tell the world's stories.
New York City