Bond set for employees charged in death of teen at Allendale Association

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LAKE VILLA, Ill. -- On the quiet shore of Cedar Lake, in Lake Villa, Willie Mae Allen thought she had found a safe place for her16-year-old son Shaquan.

But it was at the Allendale Association, a residential treatment facility for troubled youth, where Shaquan would lose his life Wednesday night.

Two staff members were charged in Lake County court Saturday morning: 27-year-old Justin Serak of Grafton, Wisconsin, with obstruction of justice, and 37-year-old James Davis of Round Lake, with obstruction of justice and involuntary manslaughter.

Investigators say the staff members were responding to a behavioral issue involving Shaquan Allen and were trying to restrain him.

Investigators say Davis and Serak made up a story about slipping on water to make the incident seem like an accident, and waited 15 minutes to call 911.

An autopsy determined Shaquan died of asphyxiation by restraint.

Attorneys for his family say they are prepared to file a lawsuit, and are concerned about a pattern at the facility after hearing from former employees.

Bond was set Saturday at $1 million for Davis, and $50,000 for Serak.


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