WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- A police officer is now suspended for applying excessive force on a 15-year-old boy by throwing him to the ground and punching his head.
- Police were reportedly breaking up a scuffle between two teens when they had to apply force due to one of the boys taking an “aggressive stance” against another officer.
- However, their actions were denounced by the Broward County mayor and several school board members who called for their removal.
In a shocking arrest video taken Thursday at a town plaza, a police officer who is currently suspended pepper sprayed, slammed to the ground and punched a 15-year-old teenager from Florida.
The video showed police officers breaking up a fist fight between two teens from J.P. Taravella High School and taking hold of them. While a boy in a blue shirt is being handcuffed on the ground, another cop pepper sprayed the other boy in the red shirt. When the teen turned away, the deputy pushed him down to the ground, stepped away from where two other deputies, slammed the boy’s face to the ground and punched him on the head.
According to Miami Herald, Broward County Mayor Mark Bogen called the behavior of the Broward Sheriff’s Office officers “outrageous and unacceptable” adding that the officer who banged the boy’s head to the ground should be fired.
In a video statement response, Sheriff Gregory Tony told Yahoo Lifestyle, “I want to assure you that we will look at this as a fact-finding measure to ensure we hold folks accountable…” They also announced that Deputy Christopher Krickovich, the cop who punched the boy’s head, was suspended.
Students from J.P. Taravella HS say they all showed up outside a nearby McDonalds to watch 2 students fight, officers responded, then this happened. Some are alleging abuse of force. We’re waiting to hear from BSO to learn what led to this violent chaos @WPLGLocal10 pic.twitter.com/yIpzaTxfkh
— Christian De La Rosa (@delarosaWPLG) April 19, 2019
According to Richard Della Ferra, the attorney for the boy wearing the red shirt, he tells Yahoo Lifestyle that the arrest resembled a ‘gang beatdown’ where after throwing the boy like a sack of potatoes, the cop leaves his two side-kicks to finish the ‘dirty work’. Della Ferra also said that his client who was unarmed was taken to the hospital by his mother to check for a head injury.
Broward County Public Schools board members expressed their shock and disappointment over the aggressive and excessive force shown by the BSO calling their actions unnecessary, at the same time pushing for their removal from their posts.
However, Deputy Krickovich’s report said that the detained boy in the blue shirt was involved in a brawl on Wednesday and had been warned against trespassing in the area. As for the boy in the red shirt, force was applied including pepper spraying when the boy tried to grab the detained student’s cell phone and allegedly took an “aggressive stance” against Sgt. Greg LaCerra, another cop at the scene.
Although the teen was charged with assault on a police officer, resisting without violence a police officer, and trespassing, Della Ferra says the aggravated assault charge was not sustained by a judge.