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Disturbing Video Shows South Carolina School Cop Appearing To Toss And Drag Female Student On Classroom Floor

October 27, 2015  |  Posted by: JammedUp Staff
Disturbing Video Shows South Carolina School Cop Appearing To Toss And Drag Female Student On Classroom Floor

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A South Carolina school resource officer was placed on paid administrative leave Monday after video surfaced that appeared to show him tossing a female high school student onto the floor of a classroom.

The incident, which appeared to be captured on a student’s cell phone, took place at Spring Valley High School in Columbia. It was not immediately clear how recently the video was taken.

The officer, identified by The State newspaper as Richland County Sheriff’s Department Senior Deputy Ben Fields, will continue to work at the department during the investigation, but will not perform duties at area schools. The paper reported that Fields was one of two resource officers employed by the school.

The video shows Fields asking a girl to rise from a classroom desk. Another adult is standing nearby. The girl stays seated, so the officer wraps a forearm around the child’s neck. The officer then tips the attached chair and desk backward until she spills to the floor. The officer then tosses the girl several feet across the floor to the front of the classroom where Fields ordered her hands behind her back and applied handcuffs.

Sheriff’s Department spokesman Lt. Curtis Wilson told The State that prior to the incident depicted in the video, the female student was asked to leave the classroom and refused. She and another male student were arrested for disturbing the peace. The female student was later turned over to her parents.

Wilson added that neither Fields nor the student were injured in the incident.

At a news conference later Monday, the spokesman said Richland County Sherrif Leon Lott had seen the video “and was very disturbed by what he saw. As a matter of fact, he has questions just like everybody else does. He wants answers to those questions. Once he has those, he will address those.”

Wilson said the sheriff was out of town at a law enforcement conference Monday and unavailable to answer questions.

“We cannot and will not accept this kind of behavior from any law enforcement officer,” Columbia Mayor Steve Benjamin said in a statement, “and I firmly believe that we need an independent investigation to get to the bottom of this incident and see that justice is done.”

“There is no justification whatsoever for treating a child like this,” said Victoria Middleton, executive director of the ACLU of South Carolina. “Regardless of the reason for the officer’s actions, such egregious use of force – against young people who are sitting in their classrooms – is outrageous. School should be a place to learn and grow, not a place to be brutalized.”

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