MANATEE, Fla. -- Authorities are investigating whether an attack on a 13-year-old boy at the Lakewood Ranch YMCA that landed on YouTube.com was planned in advance so it could be recorded for the Internet.
The Manatee County Sheriff’s Office has recommended the Manatee state attorney’s office charge two teenagers with battery. They can be seen on the video beating the boy, according to sheriff’s spokesman Dave Bristow.
The 54-second video has set off multiple investigations by the sheriff’s office, Manatee County School District and Manatee YMCA. And sheriff’s reports say the father of one boy recommended for charges was arrested on a child abuse charge after an argument with his son over the filmed fight turned physical.
The attack took place just before 11 p.m. Friday in the YMCA parking lot on Lakewood Ranch Boulevard, as a nighttime youth outreach program called the 5th Quarter went on inside. The program is often run after football games to give kids somewhere to go, said YMCA executive director Sean Allison.
YMCA officials believe the ambush was planned in order to be recorded on video.
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