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INVESTIGATIVE UNIT: Chief defends officer who placed female student in headlock

7 months 6 days 27 minutes ago Tuesday, January 10 2017 Jan 10, 2017 January 10, 2017 5:38 PM January 10, 2017 in News
Source: WBRZ

BAKER- Police Chief Carl Dunn is defending one of his officer's actions tonight, after surveillance video from Baker High School captured the officer placing a female student in a headlock before taking her down to the ground.

The incident occurred just days before Christmas.

The video obtained by the WBRZ Investigative Unit shows the inside of the school office. A male officer places a female in a headlock before she was restrained on the floor. Chief Carl Dunn said the student barged into the office and refused to comply with commands. that's when his officer restrained the female who was arrested for behaving badly.

It's video that will make any parent cringe. The WBRZ Investigative Unit obtained footage from inside Baker High School and showed it to Police Chief Carl Dunn.

"To me, the officer was restraining her," Dunn said. "She was restrained. No one was injured any kind of way. As you can see in the video, she pushed back passed the officers telling her to stand back."

Dunn identified the student as 18-year old Na'Qweveya Weaver. She faces charges of battery on a police officer, resisting arrest, and disturbing the peace. Dunn says multiple officers including himself were on campus that day after getting dispatched to school for a fight that involved Weaver's relative. What happened next landed her in a head lock and handcuffs too.

"If my officers did anything whatsoever that was a violation of this (pointing to Baker police procedures), this is what we will live by in Baker," Dunn said.

According to Dunn, body camera footage from another officer at the school paints a better picture of the resistance officers encountered that forced the take down. You can hear Weaver shouting profanities.

"Let go of my f****** neck," Weaver tells the Officer. "Get the f*** off. I'm talking now. I can talk now."

Dunn says despite how the surveillance video looks from school, his body camera footage shows just how combative Weaver was. Currently, there have been no formal complaints to his office.

"All you had to do was say stop," Weaver continued in the body camera footage. "You ain't had to come at me like that and put your hand around my neck. What type of man you is trying to manhandle a little girl?"

The mom of the student who was arrested and placed in a head lock refused to do an on camera interview. However, she told WBRZ she's outraged over the way her daughter was handled. When asked why she hasn't filed a complaint yet, she said she's hired an attorney and plans to sue.

"He was restraining her," Dunn said. "We can arm chair quarterback. He was restraining her. Your supposed to meet necessary force with that force."

Dunn said immediately after the incident his office requested surveillance video from the school. But his department never got a copy. As Dunn addresses the issue head on, he says he has nothing to hide and believes his officers acted in good faith.

"Bring the complaints here," Dunn said. "I promise they will be thoroughly investigated, every last one of them."

The officer seen in the take down is Louis Hamilton. He's been with the Baker Police Department for two years. He has two complaints in his jacket: one for an arrest he made over a custody dispute, the other for rudeness. He was cleared of the rudeness complaint, and the custody dispute is still pending.

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