A sheriff’s deputy in South Carolina is on leave after a video showed him tossing a female high school student from her desk and dragging her across a classroom. Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott was returning to Columbia on Tuesday from a conference in Chicago to get more information about the confrontation at Spring Valley High School.
Senior Deputy Ben Fields has been placed on leave, Lt. Curtis Wilson said. No one was hurt in Monday’s confrontation, which officials said occurred after the student refused Fields’ order to leave the classroom for being disruptive.
The incident was captured on cellphones by several students. The video shows Fields asking the girl to stand up. The girl remains seated and the officer wraps a forearm around her neck.
The officer then tips the desk backward until she falls onto the floor. The officer tosses the girl several feet across the floor to the front of the classroom, where Fields orders her hands behind her back and puts her in handcuffs. Lott told local news outlets that the video showed the student resisting and being arrested.
“It’s very disturbing what happened today. It’s something I have to deal with and that’s what we’re going to be doing,” Lott said by telephone Monday.
According to deputies, Lott has written to U.S. Attorney William Nettles and the FBI requesting a formal investigation.
Click here to watch the disturbing video.