5 teens charged over ice bucket challenge prank on boy with autism

Five Cleveland teens accused of dumping a bucket full of feces, urine, tobacco spit and water on a fellow classmate were charged Tuesday. YouTube/Screengrab

TORONTO – Five Cleveland teens accused of dumping a bucket full of feces, urine, tobacco spit and water on a fellow classmate were charged Tuesday.

The victim was a 15-year-old boy with autism who thought he was participating in an ice bucket challenge for charity.

“This is a horrific act of degradation and violence,” said an online petition set up last month that demanded the students responsible be prosecuted. “It is so harmful and hurtful to that young man and his family and also to the people who know about this. Not only did this group of people damage such a wonderful fundraiser, but they exploited it and this young man past the point of redemption.”

READ MORE: U.S. fire captain dies after being injured in ice bucket challenge

The Cuyahoga County prosecutor’s office filed the charges in juvenile court against the teens, who are between the ages of 14 and 16.

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Three of the teens face juvenile charges of delinquency, assault and disorderly conduct while the other two teens were charged with disorderly conduct and will be sent summons to appear in court.

A police report was filed in early September by the victim’s mother after she reportedly found a video of the incident on her son’s cellphone.

READ MORE:  Friend of Ice Bucket Challenge creator dies celebrating ALS fundraising

In an effort to track down the perpetrators, the boy’s mother shared the video with media and on social media channels including Facebook and YouTube.

“He wants to be a normal kid,” said Dean Valore, the victim’s family lawyer. “He wants to fit in and he wants to have friends.”

– With files from The Associated Press

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