Two New Jersey daycare workers face charges after reportedly staging a "fight club" with preschoolers and kindergartners in August.
CBS reports that 22-year-old Erica Kenny and 28-year-old Chanese White encouraged the young children to fight each other on the playground at Lightbridge Academy daycare in Cranford, New Jersey, for pure pleasure.
Acting Union County Prosecutor Grace Park said that the so-called "fight club" consisted of "about a dozen children -- boys and girls between the ages four and six -- just fighting; throwing each other to the ground; hitting each other."
Kenny allegedly recorded the fights and sent the videos to a group on Snapchat. Although the app typically deletes videos after 10 seconds, authorities found one that somebody saved.
The group allegedly fought on August 13th, and investigators hope to determine whether the fights happened more than once.
"Most parents would be astonished by the behavior," Park said.
In the videos, the boys and girls push each other to the ground and try to hit one another, prosecutors said.
“She was very nice, but you don’t really know anybody, really,” said White's stunned neighbor, Betty Farinelli.
The strangest part of this case is that there have been several like it in recent years. NJ.com reports that there were three near-identical cases in Delaware, Texas, and Ohio, respectively.
In each case, adults encouraged young children to fight at daycare and took videos of it. They cheered on the violent behavior but made sure that the kids followed a set of rules.
"No pinching, only punching," one Delaware daycare worker said, when a fighting 3-year-old complained that their opponent was fighting dirty.
In the most recent "fight club" case, Lightbridge fired the employees and said in a statement that they were "shocked and saddened by what they call an "isolated incident," according to CBS.
“While no children were physically harmed during this incident, we have a zero tolerance policy for anyone who acts in conflict with the core value of Lightbridge Academy – the safety and well-being of children," the statement said.
The two women face charges of child abuse, and Kenny face additional charges of endangering the welfare of a child.
White faces up to 18 months in prison, and Kenny faces up to five years.