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I’ve been generally trapped inside the past couple of days watching 4.63 inches of rain get dumped on me. I couldn’t do things that I wanted, and was unsure if we would make it through the storm without some moron speeding on the main roadway and skidding on the water that always collects on that street. Most of the skids seem to target one utility pole that is part of the circuit supplying power to my house. Fortunately the water was deep enough that speeders were flooding out their engines before skidding.

Since I was inside I got to see the ‘roid rage’ of the ‘school resource officer’ in South Carolina who threw a 16-year-old around when she didn’t “respect his authority” in the classroom.

I’m serious about suspecting anabolic steroid use by the officer based on the video. This is a problem that isn’t being addressed by police departments. If you can’t control yourself, you will never be able to control others.

We were taught ‘come-along holds’ in the police academy. These were techniques that convinced people who were not in a chemically altered state that coming along and cooperating was the best course. Refusing would cause you pain. Some of the techniques were modified versions of wrestling holds.


1 Badtux { 10.28.15 at 12:31 am }

It was a bit more than disrespecting his authoritah. The teacher had requested several times that the girl put her phone away. The girl refused. The teacher told the girl to go to the office. The girl refused. The teacher called for administrative help. The assistant principal came in and told the girl she needed to come with him. The girl refused. The assistant principal told the girl she would be suspended if she did not come with him immediately. The girl refused. The assistant principal told her that she was suspended and she had a choice of coming with him immediately to the office to process the paperwork, or she would be arrested for trespassing. The girl said “I don’t care.”

At that time the police in the form of the school resource officer were called to arrest the girl and remove her from the classroom to the office if she refused to leave the room, since as a suspended student she had no right to be there. The police officer requested that she exit the room peacefully. The girl refused and said “make me.” At that point the police officer arrested her not so peacefully.

So it was a bit more than the girl disrespecting the officer’s authoritah. The girl resisted every attempt by both the administration and by the police officer to have her voluntarily leave the classroom in order to avoid the arrest. The girl refused to cooperate with those attempts to have her leave the classroom, thus was arrested for trespassing. The police officer exerted force to arrest the girl, as is usual when a suspect resists arrest. The police officer used poor judgement in the force that he exerted, in that it provided too much opportunity for injury to both the girl and to other students in the class, but the fact of the matter is that arresting a suspect who refuses to cooperate is never going to be pretty. Given that the trespassing person was not cooperating with the officer who was trying to avoid the arrest by having her stand up and walk with him to the office, there would have been force required to arrest her regardless of what he chose to do. That force would have had poor optics regardless, whether the force had been a tactical baton strike to the kidneys, an arm lock of some sort, or simply lifting girl and desk together and removing them from the room.

The officer chose to try to slide her out of the desk and carry her out of the classroom, but that was poor judgement because she had already proven that she was going to resist arrest, and he should have known that she would grab on to the desk. But we would be having this conversation irregardless of what he did, because arrests of non-compliant suspects are never polite with cookies and tea, and the optics always suck when the police officer is a large white male and the perp being arrested is a young black female.

I suppose we could simply refuse to arrest trespassers who are on school property after being suspended and turn the schools over to the gangs, but I’ve seen such schools before first hand. No education happens in such schools. The principal of such schools might be proud of himself that he’s not being mean to those poor innocent little children, but destroying the education of a thousand students because of an unwillingness to remove defiant and disruptive students from the school until they are willing to cooperate with the educational process is hardly doing the majority of students a favor. Sorry, I don’t buy any of that “poor innocent child” BS, I’ve been there, done that, seen it first hand, there are some of those kids who aren’t going to cooperate with the educational process unless they get some consequences that have teeth, and no amount of hand wringing and “poor widdle child” are going to change that reality.

– Badtux the Former Teacher Penguin

2 Bryan { 10.28.15 at 10:18 pm }

The student will face the consequences of her actions, and the officer has been shown the consequences of his over-action.

She flipped over backwards because he lifted her under her left knee. She didn’t want to get out of the desk, so you move her in the desk by grabbing the back of her shirt and the back of the chair and sliding across the floor to the hall. She could have been cuffed while in the chair.

I have used force to arrest people, often, because many people don’t like being arrested. I have been injured arresting people, but it comes with the job. I was trained to do the job and I applied the training. After consulting with his training staff, the sheriff determined that the deputy did not use force in compliance with the department’s training and the deputy lost his job.

Noting what the deputy did wrong isn’t ignoring what the student did wrong.

When I was in school the teacher would have bounced a chunk of chalk or an eraser off your head for being obnoxious. In Catholic schools it was the metal edged ruler. Today teachers aren’t allowed to touch students, so you end up with ‘school resource officers’ and the criminalization of being a teenager, because teenagers all seem to be hellbent on pissing off adults.

3 Badtux { 10.29.15 at 10:36 am }

Fair enough summary, Brian. One thing to note is what the situation does to teacher retention, especially at the high school level where teachers have fewer in-classroom tools to deal with student behavior. They had to implement the school resource officer system because otherwise they would have no teachers, because no teacher would agree to teach in an environment where students are free to do anything they want to do with with no real consequences. On the other hand, teachers don’t sign up to watch students be turned into criminals for adolescent behavior that would have been handled by the office years ago either…

4 Bryan { 10.29.15 at 8:55 pm }

Badtux, I taught college classes, but at night so I wouldn’t have to deal with ‘college -age students’ because they hadn’t gotten any more respectful than they were in high school.

Teachers shouldn’t have to act as surrogate parents, i.e. baby sitters, nurses, parole officers, and every other job that society has dumped on schools and teachers. When I first went to college it was to prepare as a social studies teacher at the high school level. The threat of being drafted made the Air Force a reasonable alternative. After getting out I looked at teaching, and did teach at the college level, because the pay scale and working conditions just sucked for high school teachers. Things have only gotten worse. You make more money flipping burgers than working as a substitute teacher in the local system.