The 38-year-old man owner of a youth boot camp in the Angeles National Forest pleaded no contest Monday to a felony count of child abuse and was sentenced to four years probation, 60 days in county jail and 30 days of community labor.
Edgar Alvarado, an ex-Marine and program director at 180 Recon, had been charged with three felony counts of child abuse and one felony count each of corporal injury to a child and sexual battery by restraint. Prosecutors said the victims were boys and girls ranging in age from 12 to 17.
As part of a plea negotiated with prosecutors, the other counts against Alvarado will be dismissed, according to a court clerk. He is barred from engaging in any kind of counseling, training or care of minors, paid or unpaid.
Deputy District Attorney Brook White said Alvarado owned the camp that dealt with troubled children.
Over three years, several teenagers were hospitalized after entering the camp, which operated at Camp Coulter in the Angeles National Forest and at the East Los Angeles headquarters of the nonprofit organization that runs the camp.
Youths were physically overloaded and exhausted as a result of the tough physical regimen Alvarado put them through and no medical supervision was provided, White said.
Teens claimed they were punched, slapped and stomped on by Alvarado and his staff, the prosecutor said.
A camp instructor, Ruben Romero Mora, was charged with three misdemeanor counts of battery. Mora, also known as Ruben Romero, pleaded no contest earlier to one count of battery and was sentenced to three years probation.
—City News Service