Disturbing Video Shows Police Officer Allegedly Assaulting a Teenage Girl in the Middle of Her Classroom
School is where our children are supposed to be molded, nurtured, and trained to grow into the adults they will become. What kind of citizens can we possibly be growing when we treat school like a prison and have police officers intimidating and assaulting students in the places where they are supposed to be learning?
A disturbing new video out of Spring Valley High School in Columbia, South Carolina, appears to show a uniformed school safety officer brutally hauling a teenage girl out of a chair in what looks like a choke hold, then physically dragging her across the floor.
The girl looks like she’s half the size at best of Deputy Ben Fields, and she does not appear to make any physical threats or even aggressive movements. She is just sitting in the chair, where she was reportedly refusing to leave after being verbally “disruptive” in the class.
Atlanta journalist Shaun King reports that the Sheriff’s Office told him, “this student was not physical, but that she was ‘verbally disruptive’ and that the officer was ‘forced’ to do this since she ‘resisted arrest.'”
This video is not what it looks like when an adult responds to a “verbally disruptive” teenager. The video looks like a grown-ass man assaulting a teenage girl for disruption that even the officer’s superiors describe as “verbal.”
Teenagers can drive a person totally crazy. They’re frustrating and infuriating and can just make you want to tear your hair out. But we are the adults, and it is our job to deal with these situations like grown-ups. It is nonsensical for adults to expect kids to grow up to be good, well-adjusted adults who know that violence is never the answer when the adults around them and in positions of authority are turning around and resorting to violence and intimidation right there in the classroom. This doesn’t tell a kid that violence is not the answer, it tells all the kids in the room that violence is the answer, and that the only way to protect themselves is to get bigger so they can be in control and exert violence on smaller people like the guy in Â uniform in this video.
The full video of the Spring Valley High School Police Officer brutally assaulting a peaceful student. pic.twitter.com/oHIS8GrtSS
â€” Shaun King (@ShaunKing) October 26, 2015
According to The Independent, another student was arrested for attempting to stand up to Fields and tell him to leave her classmate alone.
“I couldn’t believe this was happening,” said that student, 18-year-old Niya Kenny, in an interview with WLTX News. “I had never seen nothing like that in my life, a man use that much force on a little girl. A big man, like 300 pounds of full muscle. I was like ‘no way, no way.’ You can’t do nothing like that to a little girl. I’m talking about she’s like 5’6″.”
Kenny videotaped the alleged assault with her cell phone, and she says that the incident occurred when the student refused to participate in the math class. The teacher reportedly told the girl to just leave the class, and when she refused, the teacher called Fields in to assist. That’s when the incident in the video took place.
Kenny was reportedly also arrested and was allegedly charged with disturbing schools. Her mother says she’s proud of her daughter.
“My child, and I’m not mad at her, she was brave enough to speak out against what was going on and didn’t back down and it resulted in her being arrested,” Doris Kenny said. “But looking at the video, who was really disturbing schools? Was it my daughter or the officer who came in to the classroom and did that to the young girl?”
Update:Â Journalist Shaun Â King has been speaking with the other students in the classroom when the incident took place, and he reports that the students are saying the initial infraction that sparked the whole incident was that the girl took a cell phone out in class.
Several students have now confirmed for us that this student was assaulted because she pulled out her cell phone in class. Was always quiet.
â€” Shaun King (@ShaunKing) October 27, 2015