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More charges for Red River Academy staff member
Posted: Fri 3:40 PM, Dec 12, 2014

There are more charges for an employee of Red River Academy arrested earlier this month for alleged criminal sexual conduct of a student.

KALB - Rapides Parish, Louisiana - There are more charges for an employee of Red River Academy arrested earlier this month for alleged criminal sexual conduct of a student.

Charles Gregory Allen was arrested on December 1 for one count each of "sexual battery," "attempted forcible rape" and "prohibited sexual conduct" of a female student.

The Rapides Parish Sheriff's Office says another alleged victim has since come forward.

After another investigation, RPSO has now charged Allen with an additional five counts each of "sexual battery," "indecent behavior with a juvenile," "simple battery" and "prohibited sexual conduct with a student."

Allen is being held without bond.


Cheneyville man facing more sex-related charges
By Melissa Gregory | [email protected] | (318) 792-1807 4:45 p.m. CST December 12, 2014

(Photo: Courtesy/Rapides Parish Sheriff's Office)

A Cheneyville man is facing more sex-related charges stemming from an investigation into alleged misconduct at Red River Academy in Lecompte, according to the Rapides Parish Sheriff's Office.

Charles Gregory Allen, 36, of 501 Boyd St., had been arrested on Dec. 3 and had been charged with sexual battery, attempted forcible rape and prohibited sexual conduct between educator and student.

The office had started an investigation after being contacted by the Lecompte Police Department for assistance, according to an earlier Town Talk story.

The investigation continued after Allen's initial arrest, however. On Tuesday, detectives got information that there was possible victim, a former Red River Academy student, in another state.

The boarding school accepts students, ages 13 to 18, from other states, according to its site.

Detectives tracked down the alleged victim and arranged an interview. After that interview, detectives got more warrants for Allen. He was arrested in the Rapides Parish Detention Center, where he's been held on a $55,000 bond since his earlier arrest, according to the release.

Allen was charged with five counts of sexual battery, five counts of simple battery, five counts of indecent behavior with a juvenile and five counts of prohibited sexual contact between educator and student.

Detectives believe there be more victims either locally or across the United States who attended Red River Academy "over the past several years," according to the release. The office is asking victims to contact detectives at (318) 473-6727 or (318) 641-6000.


Teens Call 'Academy' a Private Prison

     SALT LAKE CITY (CN) - A private prison that calls itself an academy locked up teenagers, "sadistically and verbally" beat them down, and forced them to go barefoot in winter, four teens claim in court.

     Tyler Weber, Tracy Sarno, Janet Yelding and Janaye Kearns sued Diamond Ranch Academy on Dec. 3, in Federal Court.

     They claim that Diamond Ranch, a self-styled "troubled teen" boarding, reform and alternative school, promised them a "supportive, safe, healthy, camp-like setting with regular and productive therapy/counseling."

     Weber and Kearns separately attended Diamond Ranch. Sarno's and Yelding's experiences are not detailed in the lawsuit.

     Weber and Kearns say they were forced to work in 100-degree weather without protection and insufficient water, deprived of shoes and sufficient clothing in winter, and repeatedly ordered to dig deep holes and refill them.

     They claim they were kept awake until midnight and made to get up at 4:30 a.m., tackled and sat on by staff "for punishment for some perceived slight," and made to sit facing walls "for any reason or no reason."

     "The staff sadistically and verbally beat down everyone, and the bullying was excessive," the 20-page complaint states. "Groups of captives were pitted against other groups for the amusement of staff. Although some staff members were more kind and helpful and willing to become friendly, they never mustered the courage to correct the sadistic staff members who enjoyed wielding the power over Mark and Devin, along with all of the others."

     Parties listed in the complaint do not include a Mark or a Devin.

     "At Diamond Ranch Academy, there was no forum for complaint, explanation, appeal, or grievance against the placement, before, during, or after it occurred," the complaint states. "The only option available to the hapless youth there confined was to 'fake it in order to make it,' for Diamond Ranch Academy is a lock down, closely guarded private prison, where punishments are harsh for any rule infraction, real or instigated by the Diamond Ranch Academy staff for their amusement."

     The plaintiffs say Diamond Ranch's "extravagant fees fraudulently suggest great expertise and cloak its staff's minimal credentials and multiple mistakes.

     A website from "Diamond Ranch Academy Survivors" ( harshly criticizes the place.

     For example: "Diamond Ranch Academy is not a legitimate treatment facility and their methods are unethical, illegal and abusive. Please, do not send your child to Diamond Ranch Academy."

     The site calls the "therapeutic" treatment program, based in Hurricane, Utah, "The Devil's Ranch," adding "Out in the middle of nowhere ... hot, desolate and miserable."The school did not respond to a request for comment.

     Diamond Ranch states on its website: "Our students become their best selves in a structured elite private school environment with a personalized therapeutic approach."

     The plaintiffs seek punitive damages for fraud, false imprisonment and child abuse.

     They are represented by Thomas Burton.

Specializing in adopted children –

press release:

Grand Opening of the First Ever Residential Treatment Center Tailored for Adopted Adolescents

After much anticipation, Three Points Center, LLC. is now licensed and accepting students. The new and highly specialized residential treatment center is specifically tailored to treat adopted adolescents, and serve their adoptive families who are struggling.

La Verkin, Utah (PRWEB) November 12, 2014

The residential treatment facility will accommodate up to 40 male and 40 female students. Three Points Center (TPC) is set up to support the facility’s unique and comprehensive 360-degree approach to treatment for adopted adolescents and their families. Formed in 2013, Three Points Center provides comprehensive, valuable and necessary services to adopted adolescents and their families. The primary purpose of our efforts is to heal wounds, understand identities, and draw families closer together through professional treatment and therapy. The owners, managers and employees of TPC have developed treatment procedures designed to support the highest levels of quality care and therapeutic standards.

Therapists Understand The Complexities Associated With Adoptive Family Life

When asked about what makes TPC unique, Dr. Brodzinsky, Professor Emeritus of clinical and developmental psychology at Rutgers University, answered “To meet the needs of adopted youth and their families, therapists must be adoption-competent. They [Therapists] must understand the complexities associated with adoptive family life and integrate these issues into their assessment process. It is then our responsibility to develop treatment strategies that are informed by adoption related experiences.” Unfortunately, for adoptive parents, this has been very difficult to find until now.

Three Points Center Ranch

To augment the residential facility, Three Points Center Ranch (TPCR) is also open to support the holistic approach of TPC’s treatment program. The Ranch, home to the animals used in the program, is intended to serve as a healing, therapeutic retreat for the students during their stay. “Although sending an adopted teen to residential treatment is a last resort for most parents,” says Dr Joyce Maguire Pavao, lecturer in Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, “Three Points Center is focused on honoring, maintaining, and enhancing family relationships.”

News Items / New article exposes TTI in Florida & nationally
« on: November 14, 2014, 11:48:19 PM »
If anyone is reading this within a few days of this post, please comment in the article and share. We are trying to drive this to the front page of the Huffington Post, which is read by 40 million people. It is already on the front of the Politics section.

Deaths, Abuse and Alleged Rapes: How Lax Oversight Endangers Florida's -- and the Nation's -- Children

Art Levine
Contributing Editor, The Washington Monthly
Posted: 11/14/2014 8:45 am EST Updated: 1 hour ago

Is Florida the most dangerous place in the country for children with disabilities, behavioral disorders or the sheer misfortune to be born into abusive families?

That could well be the case, based on a series of troubling investigative reports in the Tampa Bay Times , Miami Herald and, this week, in Miami New Times pointing to lax oversight endangering Florida's most vulnerable children. In March, the Miami Herald's investigative team, led by Carol Marbin Miller and Audra Burch, began its horrifying series chronicling nearly 500 deaths of children loosely monitored by the state:

    Ta'Vontae, the first to die, suffocated at 2 months of age while sleeping on a couch with his mother, Rachel Fryer, who later tested positive for cocaine. Child welfare authorities took Tariji from Fryer and put her in foster care. Then they gave her back, convinced Fryer had tamed her drug use and violent outbursts. Three months later, Tariji was killed with a blow to the head.

    Fryer stuffed Tariji's body into a leopard-print suitcase, caught a ride and buried her 50 miles from her Sanford home. The girl's pink and white shoe, an unintended grave marker atop freshly turned dirt, was the only hint of her life and death. She would have turned 3 this month.

    The twins joined a sad procession of children who died, often violently, after the Florida Department of Children & Families (DCF) had been warned, often repeatedly, that they or their siblings could be in danger.

    They tumbled into canals and drowned, baked in furnace-like cars, were soaked in corrosive chemicals, incinerated, beaten mercilessly, and bounced off walls and concrete pavement. One was jammed into a cooler posthumously; others were wrapped like a mummy to silence their cries, flattened by a truck, overdosed and starved. An infant boy was flung from a moving car on the interstate. A 2-year-old girl was strangled by her mom's pet python.

These atrocities were made possible by the same pattern of apparent bureaucratic neglect and indifference -- although not leading to any deaths -- that seem to be at work on a smaller scale in the weak response of officials to alleged incidents of sexual and physical assaults at the private Vanguard School for learning disabled kids in Lake Wales, Florida, Miami New Times reported this week. (I wrote and researched the article with the backing of the Fund for Investigative Journalism.)

The lack of effective regulation of Vanguard and other residential facilities in the state has alarmed state Sen. Eleanor Sobel (D-Hollywood), the chair of the Florida Senate Committee on Children, Families and Elder Affairs. After reviewing information on Vanguard and failed state oversight, she declared this week after the New Times article was published: "The situation at Vanguard is awful and it is shameful. I don't care whether or not the government funds it: it should be required to be licensed, inspected and accredited." She added, "There are so many statutes on the books that are never implemented but this issue needs to be a priority by the legislature and fixed -- so that the law is implemented and clarified."

She and her colleagues in the Florida legislature, prodded by child advocacy groups such as Florida's Children First and the deadly scandals exposed by the Miami Herald, unanimously passed this year sweeping legislation designed to promote improved monitoring and greater transparency by DCF. But few -- if any -- of those reforms would affect the privately-funded students at the Vanguard School who attend at costs up to $44,000 a year, because they're not under state care or monitoring.

The New Times article focuses initially on the story of the flawed response to the alleged sexual assault by two males students of a 16-year-old girl in March 2011, named "Susan Jackson" in the article to protect her identity. For instance, Det. Mary Jerome of the Lake Wales Police Department allowed the school's president to help in questioning the suspects, which is not accepted practice. And cops closed the case the same day the rape was reported without obtaining any evidence supporting the suspects' alibis. (The Lake Wales Police Department declined to comment for this article. "We respectfully decline to make statements or to be interviewed about the investigation or former employees," Deputy Chief Troy Schulze told New Times.)

But with no one paying much attention, serious problems apparently continued at the school. For instance, on January 17, 2013, according to former teacher Gail Bonnichsen, a teenage girl was allegedly assaulted on the grounds by a student who jammed his hand inside her, causing vaginal bleeding. But staff on duty that night brushed aside the girl's concerns and didn't call police or seek medical help -- until the girl told Bonnichsen about it late the next day. Bonnichsen told New Times that she called a DCF abuse hotline and two local police departments, but the agencies never responded. "Nothing was done about it, and nobody gave a crap," Bonnichsen says.

Perhaps just as alarming, New Times reviewed a 21-page list of 911 calls from the Vanguard School to the county's emergency call center between November 2010 and September 2014, plus a list of the far fewer service calls and even fewer arrests by Lake Wales cops. They indicate dozens of phoned-in emergencies, including at least a dozen assault cases and other violent disturbances -- and some attempted suicides, all at a school that's not licensed or approved by the state to handle violent or seriously disturbed kids.

A blogger and children's rights activist based in Palm Beach County, Jillie Ryan, first discovered the disturbing allegations of sexual assault at the school. She learned from her sources that the Connecticut-based educational consultant advising the family of Susan Jackson, Marcia Rubinstien, had alerted colleagues on a listserv about dangers at Vanguard. Rubinstien was concerned about her client Susan's safety.

Rubinstien told New Times that she didn't call authorities because "the information I had was hearsay." Now, she says, "I would recommend that no child be sent there until the social environment is conducive to the safety of the student."

In a 2011 reply to a lawsuit filed by Susan's family, the school's attorneys denied negligence claims against the school. They also charged that Susan and her family were partially to blame for any harm to Susan by acting "negligently and carelessly" themselves. Despite repeated email and phone inquiries from New Times, school officials, including President Cathy Wooley-Brown, declined to answer any broader questions about student safety and the alleged failure to properly report crimes. Polk County-based attorney Richard Straughn, who represents the school, wrote, "The health, safety, and well-being of students are top priorities at the Vanguard School... Part of our commitment includes complete respect for the confidentiality and privacy rights of our students and families..."

But in the absence so far of real accountability, reforms have been slow to be carried out both by DCF and the far more obscure Vanguard School, which operates outside of public scrutiny or any government monitoring. Under the new law strengthening abuse investigations, the Florida DCF still self-reports its own progress, Sobel notes, rather than being tracked by any outside or independent investigators. So it's become apparent that the agency is still not following the spirit of this and other reform laws affecting child abuse passed in recent years. For instance, just last month, the Miami Herald reported that even after the legislation passed required public reporting of all abuse and neglect deaths, officials there have found ways to evade that responsibility with a neat Kafkaesque trick: They simply don't classify the deaths of many children under their watch as abuse or neglect. After highlighting such tragedies as a disfigured two-month-old who was suffocated to death after his family had been investigated 38 times, the Herald's Carol Marbin Miller wrote: "Even as the Florida Department of Children & Families has promised greater openness, [these] fatalities, and dozens of others like them, have never been counted among the state's victims of fatal abuse or neglect." She added, "But except for abiding by a new state law that required DCF to create a website listing all child fatalities, Florida has continued to undercount the number of children it fails."

Without facing meaningful accountability after the alleged sexual assault in 2011 and even in the face of the family's lawsuit, settled with a gag order on all parties last fall, Vanguard officials didn't change much, either. In miniature, this illustrates what happens when no one is ensuring that kids are protected.

In subsequent years after the Susan Jackson incident, relatively little was done by school officials to report to the DCF abuse hotline other alleged physical and sexual assaults, as apparently required by a tougher reporting law passed in 2012. School officials declined to answer allegations raised by former staffers that administrators discouraged them reporting such incidents to authorities.

Now, it turns out, the school isn't even complying with a mild state law requiring accreditation for residential safety by one of three state-approved national organizations, such as the Commission for Accreditation of Residential Facilities (CARF). That's been confirmed by all three accrediting groups, which say they're not evaluating Vanguard. The school has obtained the required academic accreditation. (It's not that hard to win residential accreditation: CARF itself under is under fire by critics, including a California legislative committee, for rubber-stamping approval of drug-treatment facilities where patients died. The private accrediting agency, which is subsidized by the facilities it monitors, has defended its oversight.)

Unfortunately, the regulatory failures embodied by hundreds of deaths of children in a six-year span under the watch of the state's scandal-plagued DCF are a disturbing symbol of the broader national failure to protect children and youth from violence, abuse and sexual assaults whether they're in foster care, living with their own dysfunctional families or in institutional settings.

The allegations of trouble at Vanguard, for example, are mirrored at comparable facilities across the country. Private schools and residential programs for youngsters with an array of issues are part of a multibillion-dollar "troubled teen" industry. It includes thousands of facilities -- from boarding schools to wilderness camps to juvenile detention centers -- that house nearly 200,000 kids. They have not only learning disabilities but also emotional, behavioral, and addiction problems. Vanguard, though, doesn't employ the notorious "tough-love" approach common in many other teen residential programs. Tough-love tactics include sadistic punishments and harsh encounter-style groups designed to break troublemaking kids physically and emotionally.

The failed enforcement at Vanguard by local and state authorities is also shaped by some of the same economic forces driving the emerging scandal nearly 300 miles northwest of Lake Wales at the influential Florida State University in Tallahassee. There, recent investigations by the New York Times and other news outlets found an inadequate response by officials to rape allegations against Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston and other football players.

Jillie Ryan sees parallels with the "troubled teen" schools she has investigated. When she saw the Florida State headlines, she told herself, "Here we go again." She successfully fought for seven years to close down a Georgia "therapeutic boarding" school that her own teenager attended for six months that was facing mounting suicide attempts and abuse allegations. Now she says of such scandals, "Everyone goes into shock, but it's all the same: there's no oversight whatsoever. Everyone gets away with whatever they want." She adds, "Financial gain is the bottom line: These facilities 'plant' themselves in towns that rely on these facilities for the generation of business and jobs."

Regardless of the growing scandal over rape allegations at Florida State, no one is less protected than the 18-and-under kids in the youth programs across the nation that face virtually no meaningful state or federal oversight, according to the GAO and testimony before Congress in 2007 and 2008. As U.S. Rep. George Miller, a California Democrat, declared in 2007 at the opening of hearings on this ongoing but little-known crisis: "In far too many cases, the very people entrusted with the safety, health, and welfare of these children are the ones who violate that trust in some of the most horrific ways imaginable."

In Florida, that's certainly proved to be true. But what's especially discouraging is that the trust given to families, care-givers and government officials to keep children safe is still being widely violated despite new reform legislation passed in the Florida legislature in 2013 and 2014. The laws were passed in the wake of both a Tampa Bay Times investigative series, "In God's Name," documenting unregulated brutal Christian academies abusing kids and the Herald series on needless child deaths, but very little has changed on the ground.

Florida is especially notorious for its lax oversight of vulnerable children. Private schools like Vanguard are barely monitored. Outside of an easily obtained business license, they don't get the oversight normally given to public schools or even state-sanctioned residential group homes and detention centers that receive government funding -- but that have also been marked by their own shocking legacies of abuse. A Huffington Post investigation last year, for example, found that boys and girls held in licensed private prisons, boot camps and detention centers run by Youth Services International, especially in Florida, have frequently faced beatings, neglect and sexual abuse.

This past January, University of South Florida researchers announced the findings from a makeshift graveyard at the notorious state-run Arthur G. Dozier School for Boys in Marianna, Florida, which closed in 2011 after a long history of abuse and scandal. At least 96 children died at the reform school between 1914 and 1973.

Even after the Tampa Bay Times exposed in 2012 widespread patterns of brutality at unmonitored Christian academies, it's still business as usual in most programs. (A few closed due to bad publicity and declining enrollment, but not as the result of any government actions.) Some schools, such as the Gateway Christian Academy/Teen Challenge in Bonfiay that had seven abuse and neglect allegations confirmed by the lackluster DCF, the Tampa Bay Times reported, continue to operate outside even the state's minimal "religious exemption" loophole. If granted that exemption, religious schools can obtain cozy private accrediting by a private Christian association led by like-minded fundamentalists. In Gateway's case, this means being permitted by Florida to run their hard-line school while simply waiting to be accredited by the Florida Association of Christian Child Caring Agencies (FACCCA), a Gateway official explained to me. The Department of Children and Families began a preliminary investigation of those Christian schools that didn't bother to obtain the fig-leaf of accreditation by FACCCA, but that didn't lead the state to examine unlicensed secular schools such as Vanguard.

One sign that FACCCA hasn't been particularly tough on the schools they claim to "monitor": it wasn't until after the Tampa Bay Times series exploded that its leaders began drafting language that, in theory, would ban the shackling of students by their member facilities.

And this past September, the Miami Herald broke a story about a 14-year-old autistic girl from South Florida who died in July 2013 after being strapped to a bed for five days by staffers at the Carlton Palms Education Center in Mount Dora, where she had been vomiting and thrashing about with a high fever. Her death at the state's largest licensed residential center for severely disabled people sparked a state probe announced on the eve of the Herald going to press, and now DCF is seeking to block new admissions.


There's still no federal response to abuse and neglect in youth residential facilities. Although the House of Representatives passed an oversight measure in 2008, the "Stop Child Abuse in Residential Programs for Teens" bill never made it through the full Congress. The hopes for any national legislation have faded along with the pending retirement of the leading advocate for federal oversight -- Rep. George Miller -- and the reluctance of Congress to pass tough new regulation of any industry.

Yet this entire troubled teen field has been marked by "thousands of allegations of abuse, some involving death, at residential treatment facilities across the country," the GAO reported in 2007.

As a result of all this, in most states in the U.S., schools and other programs for troubled teens-- some run by fundamentalist religious groups -- have continued to operate, despite allegations of abuse and neglect, including whipping, torture, solitary confinement, electric shock treatment for autistic children at the Judge Rotenberg Center in Massachusetts; alleged rapes at the now-defunct New Bethany Homes in Louisiana; and over 80 needless deaths in residential treatment since 2000.

Clearly, the allegations against Vanguard -- which has never been accused of either torture or causing deaths -- and other private programs for teens are hardly unique. Among the latest controversies in this field: a lawsuit filed on behalf of 350 families and "survivors" against a network of allegedly jail-like boarding schools in Utah best known by their acronym WWASPS, as the New York Times has reported; activist outrage about two purportedly needless deaths, including one suicide, at the controversial Diamond Ranch Academy that has aggressively counter-sued some critics and forcefully denied any maltreatment of students; and the recent Anonymous-backed social media campaign to shut down the allegedly abusive Logan River Academy in Utah that reportedly uses solitary confinement as punishment, a charge the school denies.

In Florida, despite the passage of laws in the last two years designed to create more transparency, better oversight and strengthen abuse investigations, critics don't see it likely that DCF's historically toxic culture of neglect, secrecy, and incompetence will be fundamentally reformed any time soon.

"Politicians won't care until their own child is killed or abused," Jillie Ryan says.

This post is adapted and updated from a longer, narrative investigative feature jointly published by Miami New Times and New Times Broward-Palm Beach, viewable in full here. Research for this article was supported by a grant from the Fund for Investigative Journalism.

The Troubled Teen Industry / "Kidnapped For Christ" now available on iTunes
« on: November 05, 2014, 02:03:02 AM »
From a mass-email sent by the team:

Hello Kidnapped For Christ Fans and Supporters!

Kidnapped For Christ is available on iTunes and VOD today and we need your help to spread the word.

To get the film towards the top of the charts on iTunes we need as many people to buy it as possible this week.

Many of you are already going to receive a DVD or viewing link as part of your support of the film on Kickstarter or IndieGoGo, but you can still help us top the charts by promoting the iTunes link on your Facebook and Twitter accounts and by telling all your friends and family to share and purchase the film. Don't forget to tag us and include #kidnappedforchrist.

Here’s the iTunes link for sharing and purchasing: or

Thanks Everyone! Look out for our DVD announcement coming next week.


The Kidnapped For Christ Team

Diamond Ranch Academy has filed a second lawsuit, this time targeting the owner of

In my opinion, this makes them look weak, like they are trying to intimidate critics into silence. This suit is also asking for over a million dollars, "for punitive damages in an amount sufficient to punish and make an example". Reminds me of the days when WWASP was falling apart and suing people who exposed child abuse and deaths in their facilities.

Diamond Ranch Academy has filed a defamation lawsuit against the Schofields, to the tune of over a million dollars, partly "for punitive damages in an amount sufficient to punish and make an example."

I have so much to say about all of this, but there are two claims DRA is making that I want to address:

1. DRA claims they are not holding kids in isolation. The reports we are getting from kids recently at DRA contradict that completely. When kids first enter DRA they go through at least two weeks of "O&A"; kids on punishment go to "RFI"; in both they are not allowed to talk to anyone or make eye contact. Even though they are in a group, this is a form of isolation.
• Notice how DRA words the question, at 8:52 of the first video ( they ask, "so there's not like a room or dark corner they take kids into?" They never directly ask the teens about isolation.
• says, "DRA has no seclusion, or “time out” rooms. Students are never punished with isolation." Source:; Screenshot:
• On all of their dorm blogs they say, "At DRA, we do not employ seclusion techniques or punitive measures to modify behavior." Source:; Screenshot:
I believe these statements are intentionally misleading.


2. says, "FACT: Students are not strip searched." Source:; screenshot:
Survivors in the "I survived Diamond Ranch Academy" facebook group are furious about this. Since it is an open group, here are some of the comments:

• I attended Diamond Ranch Academy for 10 months, within those 10 months I was strip searched over 100 times

• apparently Ricky is denying that they strip search us... Was my O/A the only one that was two weeks of humiliation?

• Hmmmmmm I was told to take my clothes off and had some fucking guy looking at me to make sure that I didn't have anything.......

• What even Who would deny this? The staff get trained on how to strip search us.

• Bullshit. Theyd get us naked for any reason they could.

• Complete lie. For girls we even had to take our bras and shirts off and shake them to prove nothing was there. Pants completely off and do a snap check of our under wear. I can go on but everyone knows they strip searched us.

• I remember being seeing roomates on run watch and having them get wokin up 7-8 times a night to be stripped search by 2 or 3 guys.

• wtf they strip searched me every 2 hours! i wrote a statement to dude he cant deny shit!

Diamond Ranch Academy is obviously feeling the heat from our advocacy, especially DRA has waged their own campaign that makes them look not only weak, but completely untrustworthy. Everyone involved in exposing them should be proud; our efforts to save kids from abuse are having an effect!

These videos really show DRA's true colors. Notice how carefully they word the questions and cherry pick the answers they want to show. For example, the guy wearing the green shirt shows up at the beginning and the end of the first video, but nothing in the middle.
Students respond to negative comments about Diamond Ranch Academy - Part One:

This video is even more interesting, they bring the same teens into a group setting and ask them directly about Students respond to negative comments about Diamond Ranch Academy - Part Two:

Check out, clearly a response to This site is filled with misinformation and outright fabrications.

I'll post more below, also see this thread on reddit:

I hope this shows parents what kind of people they are trusting their children to.

News Items / Re: Employee at Red Rock Canyon School arrrested
« on: January 09, 2014, 02:32:41 AM »
Great find, Oscar. I hadn't heard about this.


Seven former residents of New Bethany Home for Girls make emotional return to Arcadia to file charges of sexual assault

December 9, 2013 by tomaswell

The decades-long controversy surrounding New Bethany Home for Girls in Bienville Parish was renewed last Friday, Dec. 6 when seven former residents of the home returned to Arcadia so that two of the women could file formal charges of sexual assault against the now-defunct home’s owner, Rev. Mack Ford.



A seventh arrived on Saturday to file her complaint.

Although only two of the six who flew in from North Carolina, Nevada, Florida and Texas, claimed to been sexually abused while living at the home, the others said they were there to lend moral support to the two, one of whom is said to be terminally ill with an inoperable brain tumor.

Sheriff John Ballance, who had his own experience with the home during his career as a state trooper some 30 years ago, met with the women, took the statements of the two claiming sexual abuse, and promised to do everything possible to resolve the matter.

An earlier statement of one of the alleged victims was turned over to state police in Bossier City in October, Ballance said.

In September, Ballance told LouisianaVoice he had picked up a runaway from the home decades ago when he was a state trooper. Instructed by the sheriff’s department to return her to the facility, he said he refused to force her to go back because of her claims of abuse.

Allegations about beatings, handcuffing and other forms of punishment of girls at the home first came to light when the Baton Rouge Advocate began an investigation of the home in 1974. Editors, however, quickly killed the investigation before any stories could be written and the issue lay dormant until the late 1980s when the Louisiana Department of Health and Human Resources began looking into abuse allegations. In 1988, the state raided the unlicensed home located south of Arcadia on LA. 9 and removed 29 girls from the facility.


Simultaneous to that raid, the Bethel Home for Wayward Children in Lucedale, Mississippi, was closed down by officials in that state. Six months after the New Bethany raid, however, it remained open and was not closed down until 1992.

There were claims of girls at New Bethany having to clean toilets with their bare hands, being locked in isolation with only a bucket for a toilet, girls being handcuffed to their beds and being made to stand all day with no restroom breaks, beatings with wooden dowels, PVC pipe, paddles, belts and limbs.

A state game warden, interviewed by the Advocate in 1974, said he would take confiscated deer that had been killed illegally by hunters to the home. “On one occasion,” he said, “Ford asked if he could have my handcuffs.”


New Bethany Baptist Church (foreground); girls’ windowless dormitory (background).

The public face of New Bethany, however, was quite different. Girls’ quartets would be clad in long dresses and paraded before church congregations to sing, figuratively and literally, the praises of New Bethany in efforts to generate “love offerings” from church members.

A father who pulled his daughter out of the home said, “He (Ford) would have those little girls sing hymns and give testimony to churches and the church members would hit the floor with their knees while reaching for their wallets” to give Ford money for his home.

The claims of physical abuse and rape are not new to the Independent Fundamentalist Baptist (IFB) Church with which New Bethany and Ford are affiliated.

The First Baptist Church of Hammond, Indiana, received a great deal of notoriety over the sexual trysts two of its ministers had with female church members over a period of several years. Their misconduct was subsequently repeated at other churches where they ministered.

And when their behavior was revealed, it was the women victims who were required to stand before the congregation and apologize and ask forgiveness for tempting the men, who invariably went unpunished and indeed, continued to receive near idol status from the congregation.

Likewise, group homes where abuse has been documented tend to receive devout support from area churches. Instead of asking those who run the homes to explain their behavior, their accusers are routinely treated as pariahs while the accused are welcomed as heroes at church rallies on their behalf.

Adherents to IFB dogma, for example, discourage intermarriage or even any contact with those of other religious beliefs, distrust government, favor home schooling, and believe that spankings should commence as early as 15 months of age.

Tampa Bay Times reporter Alexandra Zayas last year was allowed to do what the Advocate refused to do. She wrote a lengthy investigative series on claims of physical abuse at several group homes in Florida.

Just as she found in Florida and as had been found earlier in Texas, Louisiana homes are unlicensed and unregulated by the state, thus allowing the operators free rein in the areas of discipline and education—so long as it is done in the name of religion.

The group homes employ the same textbooks that rely heavily on the Accelerated Christian Education (ACE) and BJU (Bob Jones University) Press curricula—the same resources used by many of Louisiana’s voucher and charter schools being approved by the Louisiana Department of Education. The textbooks eschew traditional science and history courses, choosing instead to apply Old Testament interpretations in their teachings.


Encaged walkway over public road discourages thoughts of escape while walking from one area of New Bethany to another.

Following their meeting with Sheriff Ballance, the women drove to New Bethany and attempted to confront Ford, who instead, refused to talk to them and walked away.


Sign displaying times of services remains outside church 21 years after New Bethany’s closure.


Clear message that visitors are no longer welcome at New Bethany Home for Girls or at New Bethany Baptist Church.


And just in case one misses the sign…

Journalist seeking interviews with former students/parents of Oxbow Academy, Gateway Academy, Birdseye Academy, Discovery Ranch, and Redcliff Ascent. Regarding programs' 'unusual', non-evidenced based therapies, commingling of children that have been sexually offended with youthful offenders, including, but not limited to Special Needs children and youth. Interviews can be either on the record or off; former employees welcome too. Please PM me or email [email protected] if you would like to participate. Please share. Many thanks.

Journalist seeking interviews on the record or off with recent victims (last five years) of covered-up rapes, sexual abuse or sexual exploitation -- either by other teens or staff -- at residential programs and private schools for "troubled teens" or those with disabilities in UT, FL. But incidents must have been written or documented in complaints to law enforcement, regulatory agencies, news stories, in lawsuits or to the management of those programs. Online/social media postings only aren't sufficient for publication to pursue. Confidential communication assured. Please PM me or email [email protected] with contact information, brief summary of the incident(s) and, if available, web link to documentation, if you'd like to be interviewed.

News Items / Re: DHS confirms another child death at Diamond Ranch Academy
« on: November 09, 2013, 11:43:11 AM »
Sunday, November 10th's Bipolar Nation Radio EXPOSES: Part 6 of "Life & Death at Diamond Ranch Academy"

Listen Live:, it will be on channel 1, 11a PT / 2p ET. If you miss it, it will be available in the archives for streaming and mp3 download.

From Bipolar Nation Radio's facebook page (

Susan Schofield's Bipolar Nation Radio welcomes Activist/Blogger Jillie Ryan to our show as we expose the latest death at Diamond Ranch Academy in Hurricane, Utah. Also, what new lengths is this and other facilities like Diamond Ranch Academy going to in order to insure their own survival while kids continue to die. Again, the Federal Government SUBSIDIZES these facilities yet CPS is NOWHERE on-site? In fact, Education Advocates are currently placing pedophiles from rich families inside these places so they won't end up in our prison system. Pedophiles are people too and have their own set of disorders, but they should not be getting treatment alongside mentally ill and autistic kids. I've made a song choice to end this show that may seem peculiar, but it says "Goodnight" to these kids in different languages and fits the tone of where I believe America is at... maintaining a false sense of peace. All this and so much more coming up LIVE this Sunday Morning on where we're still not saying "Heil Hitler" yet, but we're damn close.

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