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Police: 2 Employees Charged For Taping, Encouraging 2 Developmentally Disabled Minors To Fight In Facility

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EXTON, Pa. (CBS) -- Two men have been charged for allegedly taping and encouraging two minors to fight at the Devereux Kanner Center in West Whiteland Township. The Devereux Center treats minors and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Anthony Merrick, 25, of Coatesville, and Rayne Portela, 24, of Glenside, were charged with endangering the welfare of children, simple assault and other related charges.

The charges were filed on Oct, 17, following an investigation into the incident at the Devereux Center, where Merrick and Portela were employed.

An investigation was launched when a parent of a minor at the facility told investigators that their child had been involved in a "boxing" altercation at the facility. It was revealed that the incident occurred on July 5. Video surveillance was obtained by investigators.

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Video surveillance showed two clients, ages 12 and 13, in what appeared to be a physical fight, with one client bleeding.

Merrick and Portela could be seen watching the clients strike each other, without either attempting to stop the altercation.

According to West Whiteland Township Police, Merrick allegedly encouraged the clients to fight and filmed the incident on a cell phone. He allegedly showed Portela the video and shared the video with her through Snapchat.

Neither Merrick or Portela filed a report as required by the facility.

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