Two Baltimore school police officers have been charged after a viral video showed one officer slapping and kicking a student as the other stood by, NBC News reports.
Anthony Spence, 44, and Saverna Bias, 53, can be seen in the March 1 video at REACH Partnership School during the encounter with an unidentified minor. Another student recorded the moment in which Spence slapped and kicked the 10th grader while Bias looked on.
Spence, who was previously placed on paid administrative leave, is now on unpaid leave and has been charged with second-degree assault, second-degree child abuse by a custodian, and misconduct. Bias was given a misdemeanor charge of second-degree assault and misconduct in office. She will be placed on paid administrative leave.
After an investigation last week, police determined Spence was not acting in self-defense. Bias allegedly told the officer he should smack the teen “because he’s [got] too much mouth.”
NBC News reports:
“I was appalled, I was disappointed,” Baltimore City Public Schools CEO Gregory Thornton said at a press conference about the incident on Wednesday (March 9.) “It really cut right to who I am as a person. I’m charged to take care of our children and here we have some folks doing some things that were certainly inappropriate,” Thornton said. “Every emotion went through me, from outrage to disappointment.”
The officers posted bond earlier today. Considered veterans in the field, they were assigned to monitor the school safety zone. In light of the incident, Marshall Goodwin, chief of police for Baltimore City Public Schools, is also on administrative leave.
Spence told reporters Friday he believes the media will twist the story. “Right now I’m the bad guy,” he said.
The city school police will continue to investigate, while the criminal case will be handed over to the State Attorney’s Office’s Public Integrity Unit. The teen’s family has decided to keep his identity hidden.
REACH helps students in middle and high school find careers in healthcare and construction. They also prep students for college.
SOURCE: NBC News | VIDEO CREDIT: Inform
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