The teen from the Spring Valley High assault video said she obeyed her teacher’s orders — but not fast enough — which led resource officer Ben Fields to forcibly remove her from her desk, The Los Angeles Times reports.
Todd Rutherford, the attorney for 16-year-old Shakara (last name withheld), spoke to reporters on Thursday about the student’s version of events. Rutherford says Shakara put her phone away but refused to leave class because she believed the punishment didn’t coincide with the crime.
The Los Angeles Times reports:
“The girl did not comply with orders to leave the classroom because “she thought it was unfair punishment,” Rutherford said in an interview with The Times. “She had already put her phone away. She wasn’t a threat to anyone. She’s bruised and battered and hurt — physically and emotionally,” he said, “what you would expect after being tossed across the room like a rag doll.”
In addition to carpet burns on her forehead, Rutherford says Shakara has a hard cast on her right arm, and a swollen neck, back, and shoulder.
Fields was fired from his position on Wednesday by Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott. The sheriff initially gave Fields the benefit of the doubt, even bringing up details about his dating life to ensure the public race was not a factor. Fields is White, Shakara is Black.
During his press conference with reporters about Fields’ termination, he placed blame on the teen for igniting the ordeal.
Niya Kenny, the second teen who was arrested for speaking out against Fields’ actions, says Shakara is still shaken up about the encounter. Via The Times:
Kenny spent 8 1/2 hours in a detention center Monday. When she met up with Shakara at their attorneys’ office on Tuesday, she said, her classmate was quiet and gave short, monosyllabic answers.
“She’s shaken up. She’s traumatized,” Kenny said.
“I feel like a teenager is going to be a teenager, and a teenager is going to think like a teenager,” she said. “Maybe she could have gotten up, but of course she didn’t deserve what she got. Justice has to prevail.”Kenny said she had never had any trouble with Fields before, but she was aware that some students referred to him as “Officer Slam.” The FBI is investigating whether he violated the girls’ civil rights.
Both teens are now facing misdemeanor charges of “disturbing schools.” Convictions could result in a $1,000 fine and 90 days in jail.
SOURCE: The Los Angeles Times | VIDEO CREDIT: Inform
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