Kissimmee, FL — Charged with felony child abuse and battery, another school resource officer has been caught on surveillance video aggressively using excessive force against a student. Although the teen never made a violent or threatening gesture towards the officer, the recently released video clearly shows the cop assaulting the student before throwing him to the ground and nearly breaking his wrist.
Recorded on May 8, a security camera captured Alexis Richmond walking into the lobby of Kissimmee Middle School with her 13-year-old son. As the mother and son began arguing at the front desk, Kissimmee Police Officer Mario Badia entered the lobby and confronted the student by repeatedly jabbing his finger in the teen’s face. Although audio was not recorded, the boy can be seen hunched over leaning against the desk as Officer Badia continued to get in his face.
While acting like a jackass and escalating the situation, Badia suddenly laid his hand on the student by grabbing the child’s face. When the teenager pulled back to free himself, Badia shoved the student in the chest, grabbed him by his shirt, and placed him in a wristlock before lifting the 84-pound boy off his feet and slamming him to the ground. For at least 42 seconds, Badia viciously torqued the kid’s wrist as the student writhed in agony.
Although the lobby was filled with people, only the boy’s mother appeared to stand up against the hostile school cop physically abusing a child. Instead of physically interfering with Badia, Richmond can be seen berating the officer for using excessive force on her son.
“He came in with such a hostile manner, like he was ready for war,” recalled Richmond. “There’s nothing I can do. I felt so helpless.”
After releasing his grip, Badia repeatedly shoved the student into the front desk while continuing to yell at him. According to Richmond, the beating left her son with a sprained ankle and wrist. During an interview with WFTV, she said police should never have been called to deal with a “kid being a kid” talking back to his mother.
"If an officer is doing that, how should I trust them? How should I know they will protect me instead of hurt me?” student Devonta Griffith told WESH.
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Unbeknownst to most children, cops often provoke people to justify an arrest. If officers cannot find a reason to arrest a person or simply want to tack on additional charges, cops routinely issue conflicting orders, encroach on personal space, and scream in your face declaring false accusations in an attempt to make you lose your temper.
In his incident report, Badia claimed he touched the student’s chin in order to force him to make eye contact with the officer. But after reviewing the footage, investigators found the student did nothing to provoke the aggressive takedown. Accusing Badia of having "no apparent lawful reason" to shove the student or continuously twist his arm, prosecutors initially charged the officer with felony child abuse a few weeks after the incident.
While on paid administrative leave for beating a child, Badia earned more than $15,000 before losing his job. After prosecutors added a battery charge against Badia, the Kissimmee Police Department finally decided to fire the abusive cop on Friday.
“The Kissimmee Police Department did not hesitate to relieve Officer Badia from duty upon viewing the video and opened a criminal and an internal investigation into the incident,” Kissimmee police spokeswoman Stacie Miller said in a statement. “The internal investigation found that Officer Badia used improper conduct on duty and excessive force as it is related to our use of force policy. Officer Badia has been given notice of our intent to terminate his employment.”
Last month, Badia pleaded not guilty to child abuse and battery. On Tuesday, the video of Badia easily manhandling the 13-year-old child was released. His trial is scheduled for December 7.
Several videos have recently emerged revealing violent school resource officers brutally attacking minors. Last month, Richland County Deputy Ben Fields was fired after students recorded him flipping over a girl’s desk and dragging her across the floor. Oklahoma City Master Sgt. Thomas Jaha was charged with assault and battery last month after repeatedly punching a student in the face for not having a hall pass.
Earlier this month, prosecutors agreed to dismiss assault charges against Louisville Metro Police Officer Jonathan Hardin for punching a student in the face if the former officer completes anger management classes. Hardin still faces wanton endangerment, official misconduct, and assault charges for choking another student unconscious in a separate incident five days later.