"Faith Under Fire"

News 8 WISH-TV/February 13, 2002
By Karen Hensel

An Indianapolis city councilman is stepping in on allegations of child abuse uncovered in last week's I-Team Investigation "Faith Under Fire."

Councilman Steve Tally says he wants all taxpayer funding to immediately stop going to the Indianapolis Training Center, a faith-based juvenile program that takes troubled kids referred by the courts.

Our I-Team hidden camera investigation uncovered alleged abuses including spanking and putting children in solitary confinement. Tally calls it "shocking" and says Indiana does not beat or abuse people in custody, even those jailed for the most heinous crimes.

He disagrees with corporal punishment in residential programs, saying that choice may not be taken away from the parent and is not a decision to be made by one person. Tally says, "in my view, extra-familial corporal punishment, denial of bathroom privileges, confinement and isolation has a greater potential for harming the child. It is not the way to gain good behavior or a clear indication of the societal consequences for misbehavior".

The state is investigating it as alleged institutional abuse. Councilman Tally has formally requested copies of the contracts from the courts.

However, Judge Payne told the News 8 I-Team the training center does not receive public funds.

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