Regional
3:45 pm
Mon October 21, 2013

Youth Ranch Operator Talks On 'Today Show'

The owner of a New Mexico youth ranch under investigation for abuse says that even though minors have been returned to their parents his program continues with older teens.

In his first media interview, Scott Chandler also told 'Today Show' co-host Matt Lauer that children at the camp for troubled teens were sometimes shackled and that parents who sent their kids to the Tierra Blanca ranch program were aware of the extreme steps that sometimes had to be taken.

Chandler says some of the kids were already incarcerated and being held under similar measures before being brought to him.

The appearance was the first one made publicly by Chandler since state police served a warrant on the ranch Oct. 11 to take custody of the under-age children. But the ranch was empty. The minors are back with parents but Chandler says some 18-year-olds remain at the ranch voluntarily.

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