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SAN ANTONIO, Texas – A school resource officer is on paid leave after video surfaced of him body-slamming a 12-year-old girl to the ground.
Sixth-grader Janissa Valdez says students were anticipating a fight between her and another girl.
She told WOAI that she was just going to talk to the other girl, but that’s when the school resource officer grabbed her.
Cell phone video captured Valdez struggling under the officer’s grip before she is body slammed to the concrete.
“You could just hear where she hits the ground. And it’s nothing but concrete, cement,” Gloria Valdez, Janissa’s mother, said. “She wasn’t moving. She was just knocked out. I wanted answers and nobody could give me answers. I contacted the vice-principal. I talked to the officer. He did what he had to do at the moment- those were his words.”
Now, the school district and the police department are investigating the incident.
“It’s very concerning. It’s alarming to see this,” Leslie Price, the district spokesperson, said. “And while we want to get all the details, I want people to know that excessive force will not be tolerated in this district.”
The following is an updated statement from the district:
The District launched an investigation yesterday into the incident shown on the video that occurred at Rhodes Middle School. It’s important that the investigation be done appropriately and in a timely manner. Texas state law requires an investigation to be conducted following a complaint filed against an officer, before that officer can be subject to any disciplinary action. The officer was placed on leave Wednesday morning, pending the outcome of the investigation. We are working to interview as many witnesses as possible, to ensure we take the appropriate action.