Christian Obedience School For Teen Boys Faces Allegations Of Sexual Abuse
A Missouri boarding school marketed to the parents of troubled teenage boys is under fire after allegations of physical and sexual abuse by former students. According to the marketing materials, the goal of the school is to teach the children the importance of obedience to authority and the joys of being a law-abiding citizen. Former students characterize the school as a “Christian torture compound”.
Adults at the school were allowed to withhold food, water, and clothing. The school further read and censored letters written home. If a kid ran away, locals with guns would hunt them down. Older students were given authority over younger students and allowed to mete out punishments on an arbitrary basis.
Now, parents, lawmakers, and even Paris Hilton have arrayed against the school and are demanding that the state shut down the school for good.
Thus far, 19 lawsuits have been filed against the school. Former students allege emotional, physical, and sexual abuse committed by both staff and other students. The school’s former doctor is facing child molestation charges concerning two victims. Five staffers are also facing criminal charges related to their conduct. Three of them continue to work at the school as of the writing of this article.
Advocates believe the measures did not go far enough. Prosecutors have recommended charges against 22 staffers of the school. An attorney representing the school described the allegations as “sensational”. However, a video shows the then-principal of the school chasing a boy with no shoes around track while kicking him in the rear.
What’s happening now?
At least six former staffers are facing charges of criminal abuse against a child, including sexual abuse. Meanwhile, the prosecution has faltered as the prosecutor has chosen to step away from the case. The state is conducting an investigation but has yet to decide on whether or not to shut down the school. Missouri recently passed new laws that make it easier for the state to shut down religious boarding schools amid safety allegations.
The boarding school has characterized those alleging abuse as bad apples who did not fit in with their program. An attorney announced that the school is looking forward to defending itself from the allegations. Meanwhile, abuse allegations emerging from Christian boarding schools remain an issue across the country.
One mother who says that she took her child to the school after symptoms related to his autism and Tourettes’ Syndrome worsened after the death of his father. She told the press that she was not allowed to speak to her son. When she and other parents confronted the school, they were told their children were among the most manipulative the staffer had ever seen and will tell them nothing but lies, an indication of the school’s defense strategy.
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