Videos show staff dragging, shoving immigrant kids - 12/31/2018 6:27:58 PM

John Moore  Getty ImagesA sign marks the entrance to the Eloy Detention Facility for illegal immigrants

John Moore Getty ImagesA sign marks the entrance to the Eloy Detention Facility for illegal immigrants

In one clip, a male staffer is seen pushing, shoving and then appearing to slap one child.

Southwest Key reported the three incidents - dated September 14, 17, and 21 - to federal officials, state authorities, and local law enforcement and said it fired the staff members in question.

One video appears to show a person dragging a child into a room and then shoving the child. The boy then runs to a corner in the room and pounds on the window to an adjacent room. The children from the two closed facilities were moved to other Southwest Key locations.

Based on the evidence gathered during that investigation, the sheriff's office said it "has made the decision to submit the case to the Maricopa County Attorney's Office for its review and determination of criminal charges". The videos were blurred to protect the children's privacy, according to the Republic.

Conditions in the nations migrant detention centers has always been a hot topic in the U.S. Following the death of a second migrant child in U.S. custody on December 24, Representative Joaquin Castro compared the conditions of migrant facilities in the U.S.to episodes of National Geographic Channel's Locked Up Abroad while speaking on a telephone news conference on Wednesday, El Paso Times reported.

"After the initial response by patrol deputies, detectives conducted a thorough investigation of all three incidents, including interviewing all involved parties and witnesses, and conducting forensic interviews with the child victims", the sheriff's department statement said, adding that its investigators reviewed hundreds of hours of surveillance camera footage.

Arizona had threatened to revoke the operating licenses of all 13 Southwest Key shelters in the state due to the company's failure to do a timely check of staffers' fingerprint clearances, but the threat was later dropped as part of the settlement.

Enriquez said that the restraint techniques that are seen in the video are legal under Arizona law.

A former youth care worker was convicted in September of sexually abusing seven teenage boys at a Phoenix shelter for immigrant children.

Southwest Key was forced to close Hacienda del Sol after an investigation found the organisation had not carried out background checks on all of its staff.

"We should warn our viewers this is absolutely disturbing", CNN correspondent Nick Valencia said about the videos, first reported by the Arizona Republic.

It must also hire an on-site state-approved "evaluator" at each of its 11 other facilities for at least a year and allow the health department to inspect its facilities without notice.

Southwest Key spokesman Jeff Eller said staff who monitored video at Hacienda del Sol notified police immediately when they saw the alleged abuse.

'We are committed to making the improvements that are spelled out and we look forward to building on these changes for the future'.

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