NBC New York
A YouTube video of young girls being forced to fight each other has surfaced, and it's now the center of an NYPD investigation. Pei-Sze Cheng reports.
Police are investigating an online video showing two young girls being forced to fight in what appears to be a New York City park.
The video, originally posted on YouTube and then on the website Gothamist, shows the two girls being urged to slap one another. They tussle, hitting each other and pulling each other's hair, while older people in the background are heard jeering and egging the children on.
Finally, one of the girls starts crying and walks away, putting on her backpack.
"I'm not playing! I'm not playing!" she sobs.
It's not clear who recorded and posted the video, and it's not clear if it's the children's parents or other teenagers yelling in the background.
The NYPD is reviewing the footage and is urging witnesses to come forward. Investigators believe the video was taken in either Manhattan or the Bronx because a double-long bus is spotted in the background. Those types of city buses only run in those two boroughs.
Child psychologist Nava Silton of Marymount Manhattan College is concerned about the emotional repercussions on the children. She says when a child is encouraged to be violent, the damage lasts into adulthood.
"It sets a precedent for how to deal with their own frustrations when they themselves become frustrated, resentful, angry -- that they immediately should use physical violence and physical means to contend with upset rather than with constructive means," said Silton.