Target: Steve Conrad, Chief, Louisville Metro Police Department
Goal: Terminate employment of officer allegedly involved in several cases of physical abuse against preteen boys.
An officer with the Louisville Metro Police Department has been arrested on several charges related to the alleged assault of two 13-year-old boys. Jonathan Hardin has been charged with assault, official misconduct, wanton endangerment, and false swearing after reportedly abusing the two students at Olmsted Academy North, an all-boy public school where he was employed as a resource officer. Despite video surveillance evidence of the attack, Hardin has only been suspended from his job.
The arrest warrant alleges that Hardin knocked a student down in an altercation by punching him with a closed fist because the child cut forward in the lunch line. After injuring the boy, Hardin cited him for menacing and resisting arrest. Only days later, he reportedly placed another child in a chokehold, causing him to lose consciousness momentarily. Hardin allegedly sought no medical help for the child, but handcuffed him and drove him home, where he made no mention of the incident to parents.
These were not the first complaints against Officer Harding. When he worked with the Gentleman’s Academy, a University of Louisville summer program designed to teach conflict resolution, several complaints were brought up about his conduct. One alleged that he dragged a 14-year-old out of bed by the neck and forced him to do sit ups for an hour at 3 am. Erica Buckner, a psychologist who worked with the Gentleman’s Academy, was reprimanded for reporting Harding’s repeated inappropriate behaviors to administration.
It is an officer’s job to protect the community, rather than to prey on the defenseless. Despite his alleged repeated aggression against children, he is still employed by the Louisville Metro Police Department. Sign the petition below to demand that the officer is fired entirely in order to ensure that he is unable to abuse his position of authority again.
Dear Chief Steve Conrad,
Officer Jonathan Hardin was recently suspended without pay following his arrest for the alleged assault of two young students at the school where he worked. He reportedly held one child in a chokehold until he lost consciousness, and punched another in the head for cutting in a lunch line. Previous complaints against Hardin allege that while working at a summer camp, he dragged one child out of bed by his neck and forced him to do sit ups in the wee hours of the morning.
Hardin has clearly abused his position of authority, and has preyed upon a particularly defenseless demographic— children. This is unacceptable for a police officer, who is sworn to serve and protect citizens. We, the undersigned, demand that Hardin is fired from the Louisville Metro PD as he poses a risk to the safety of the community.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Dickelbers via Wikimedia Commons