|Chanese White of Roselle- accused of running toddler |
“fight club” at daycare center
Two women accused of urging children to fight at a Cranford child care center, recording the scenes and referring to the activity as a “fight club,” are now seeking probation through a program that could result in the charges being dismissed.
The two former childcare workers, Erica Kenny, 22, of Cranford, and Chanese White, 28, of Roselle, are each seeking acceptance into Pre-Trial Invention or PTI.
That program, available to first-time offenders, allows defendants to be placed on a highly supervised probation. Defendants apply for admission to the program before a grand jury returns an indictment in the case.
After a defendant successfully completes the probation period, the charges are dismissed and the conviction is removed from records, according to court regulations.
Kenny and White each pleaded not guilty to charges of fourth-degree child abuse, stemming from an Aug. 13 incident at Lightbridge Academy in Cranford where they both worked.
Both women were scheduled to have a court hearing October 15, but court records show that White is now slated to appear in court on October 28 for a hearing on her acceptance into PTI. Kenny is to be in court November 18 for a hearing on her acceptance.
The Union County Prosecutor’s Office declined to comment when asked about these two cases.
The Union County Public Defender’s Office, which is representing both Kenny and White, also declined to comment on the cases.
Authorities say the two woman instigated and encouraged about a dozen children, ages 4 to 6, to fight on the day care center playground. None of the children was injured, authorities said. Both woman were fired from their jobs within a week following the incident, Lightbridge officials said.
Kenny faces an additional charge of third-degree endangering the welfare of a child for allegedly recording video of the fights with her cell phone and sharing the clips with several friends via the social media app Snapchat.
Kenny was heard on the video referring to the activity as “Fight Club,” quoting from the book and movie of the same name.
Some parents of children at the day care center stated their disgust over the incident, though other parents spoke in support of how the center reacted in quickly suspending and then firing the two workers.