Police arrest Delaware teens seen in online video beating mentally challenged man
Two teenage boys in Delaware have been arrested for their role in the assault of a mentally challenged 26-year-old man, WPVI reports.
In a video that went viral over the weekend, the two teenagers can be seen taunting and beating the 26-year-old man who suffers from Williams Syndrome, a developmental disease that causes individuals to have “elfin” features, a slight body frame, and behave in a highly sociable manner. Children with the syndrome, for example, consistently test higher than their peers when it comes to empathy, and will often initiate conversation with complete strangers.
This generosity of spirit makes the brutal attacks on Coran, who does not wish his last name to be known, all the more unsettling. His mother, Yana, told WPVI that watching the video made her feel “rage, anger — because of the situation, with him being mentally disabled, he doesn’t do anything to anyone but be kind.”
In the video, Coran can be heard asking one of the boys to “leave me alone,” but the boy chases him around the yard, picks him up, then body slams him.
One of the people observing the altercation can be heard yelling, “Come on! Hit him back!” But Coran refuses to, instead crumbling into a heap, only to be set upon by two other teenagers who begin to kick him in the head.
There are other videos of other occasions in which the teens tormented and beat Coran online.
A 16-year-old girl named Angeliz Marrero saw the videos online, and reposted them to her Instagram account with the hashtag #TheBullyProject in order to shame the teens involved.
“I was so mad but at the same time the first thing I thought was, ‘I have to do something about this,” she told WPVI. “It spread so fast and I’m just so grateful for everybody that’s helping me out because if it weren’t for everybody helping, supporting and everything, this wouldn’t even go viral and that man really deserves justice.”
The two teens in the video who could be identified were arrested over the weekend on misdemeanor assault charges, but were released into the custody of their parents.
Watch a report on the attack via WPVI below.