Protect Young Students From Racist Violence

Target: Richland School District 2 Superintendent Dr. Debbie Hamm

Goal: Ensure no more violent security guards are hired at school where a teen girl was allegedly dragged and thrown from her seat.

A recently released video shows a black teen girl being strangled, thrown backwards from her seat, and violently dragged across the floor. Parents and individuals across the country are outraged by the incident, saying that this kind of violence was completely unacceptable for the situation.

School officials say that the girl was refusing to leave class after being “disruptive” and the officer claims that she resisted arrest. However, the video appears to show a girl who was calm and unmoving in her seat while the officer approaches her, and then he suddenly grabs her, wraps his arm around her throat, and throws her backward–seat and all. He then appears to drag her to the front of the classroom and violently restrain her. The student’s classmates have also disputed the claim that she was disruptive before the incident.

This follows a long list of incidents wherein children of color have been treated in a seemingly unnecessarily violent nature by school security officers. Even if children are being disruptive and resisting, they’re children. They should not be treated with violence like they’re criminals, especially if they’re doing nothing to threaten other students.

It’s clear that there was a severe lack of oversight when this resource officer was hired. The school district has already banned this man from all of its campuses, but this never should have happened in the first place. Demand that the Richland School District implement a new, stricter policy for hiring school security officers to ensure that violent and possibly racist people are kept away from at-risk students.


Dear Dr. Hamm,

I understand that one of your school resource officers was caught on video throwing one of your young students from her seat and dragging her violently across the floor. The video suggests that the officer was unprovoked and other students dispute the claim that the girl was disruptive, and she did not appear to struggle at all.

I can’t imagine what a young teen could have done to be thrown and dragged the way the girl in the video appeared to be. It looked incredibly violent and like it could have caused serious injury. No student should ever be handled in such a manner simply for being “disruptive.” School needs to be a safe and understanding environment, especially for students who have to fear racist violence outside of school walls.

I thank you for banning this resource officer from your schools, but he never should have been hired in the first place. In order to make up for this incident and better protect your students in the future, you must create a new hiring policy for all school security officers in your district. Please ensure that none of the children under your care experience this kind of violence within your walls again.


[Your Name Here]

Photo credit: Nick St. Charles

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