Alleged victim speaks out about fights at Youth Challenge Academy

Published: Oct. 24, 2022 at 6:51 PM EDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

AUGUSTA, Ga. (WRDW/WAGT) - After fights forced officials at the Youth Challenge Academy at Fort Gordon to cancel class, we’re learning more about what happened from a cadet in the program.

On Monday, we got an update from the Georgia National Guard on what they call “escalating incidents” last week.

They’re investigating the most recent fights from two weeks ago that led to one cadet being sent for a “medical check”.

We’re hearing from another cadet who was in the program and says he was stabbed during the fighting.

“All of it, it still rings in my head about the fact that somebody had tried to kill me,” he said.

This cadet, whose family asked to remain anonymous for safety reasons, says the Youth Challenge Academy had been a tense experience from the start.

He says by day three, he heard on barrack radios instructors called ‘cadres’ found weapons. And by day four, he says he was in the middle of a giant fight and got stabbed.

“I had to defend myself against two people, and as I was defending myself, I was watching one of the cadres. He was just standing there, recording and laughing. Instead of trying to help,” said the cadet.

With the adrenaline of the situation, he didn’t realize he had been stabbed until after the fight. He says he was bleeding profusely from his arm but was not treated until much later.

“That same night, right after that huge fight, alpha came back into our barracks again. They came in, and we had another fight, and during this time, somebody had tried to shank me again,” he said.

The parent said: “My son was begging to come home.”

The family is now getting X-rays for his injuries, and Fort Gordon is leaving the weight of security on the Georgia National Guard.

The guard tells us they are investigating and said “we are committed to running the program safely or not at all.”

For the time, it looks like they’re still moving forward to bring in a new class very soon.