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Developmentally Disabled Residents Goaded to Fight?

Developmentally Disabled Residents Goaded to Fight?

Hampton Bays - (WALK) Four employees at at Long Island group home face felony charges for allegedly amusing themselves by goading two developmentally disabled residents to fight.

A New York State prosecutor described the scene at Independence Group Home Living in Hampton Bays as a "developmentally disabled fight club."  The suspects allegedly encouraged two residents to fight, resulting in punches thrown and a resident overturning his opponent's wheelchair as they lookked on, laughing, cheering and encouraging the activity.

The incident happened in October or November of last year and involved two men, in their 50's, who have the metal capacity of toddlers, according to prosecutors.

The incident was recorded on cellphone video by suspect Justin McDonald, 19, of Lindenhurst, said prosecutors.  Other suspects are Erin McHenry, 28, of Brookhaven; Stephen Komara, 58, of East Moriches; and Rosemary Vanni, 44, of Eastport. Vanni reportedly failed to show up for their hearing at Southampton Town Justice Court Thursday.

All four workers were arrested by Southampton Town Police charged with felony endangerment.  McDonald, McHenry and Komara pleaded not guilty and were sent to the Suffolk jail. Bail for each was set at $10,000. Vanni is scheduled to be arraigned today, Friday.





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