Trigger warning: police violence
A video released Monday shows a school resource officer at Spring Valley High School in Columbia, South Carolina dragging a seated student from her desk as a teacher and her classmates looked on. The student did not appear to be combative as the officer placed her in a chokehold, flipped her to the ground and violently arrested her.
Local affiliate WISTV reports that the officer, identified as Deputy Ben Fields, was called after the student refused to leave class.
According to Sheriff Leon Lott, the school resource officer was acting in response to a student who was refusing to leave class.The officer has been placed on administrative duty. According to the Daily News, Fields has "a history of roughing up students," and was once sued for allegedly pepper-spraying and beating a man because he was playing his music too loudly.
"The student was told she was under arrest for disturbing school and given instructions which she again refused," Lott said. "The video then shows the student resisting and being arrested by the SRO."
Libby Roof, a communications officer for Richland School District Two, told News19 officials were "deeply concerned" about the incident.
"Student safety is and always will be the district’s top priority," Roof said in a statement. "The district will not tolerate any actions that jeopardize the safety of our students. Pending the outcome of the investigation, the district has directed that the school resource officer not return to any school in the district."
In the longer video obtained by WISTV, Fields can be heard telling the other students, "I'll put you in jail next."
Contact: Video Shows Black Female Student Violently Arrested in Class by School Resource Officer
wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina