DeKalb County

DeKalb SRO allowed to stay on duty for week after excessive force complaint, records show

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — The DeKalb County School District allowed a school resource officer to remain on active duty for nearly a week despite facing allegations that he used excessive force on two students, a Channel 2 Action News investigation uncovered.

Channel 2′s Michael Seiden filed multiple open records requests with the school district and learned that a student resource officer at the DeKalb Alternative School, was placed on administrative leave on March 19 pending the outcome of an internal investigation.

Sources close to the investigation told Seiden that the officer was placed on leave after he was accused of slamming a student on her head, knocking her unconscious during a March 13 incident at the DeKalb Alternative School.

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“Due to the serious nature of the accusations, the officer was placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an internal investigation,” according to the district statement emailed to Channel 2 Action News. “DCSD is committed to maintaining the integrity of the ongoing investigation and legal process. Further statements will not be issued until the investigation is complete.”

Channel 2 Action News has learned that the officer resigned while under investigation on March 28, according to the Georgia Peace Officer Standards & Training Council.

Sources close to the investigation told Seiden that the March 13 incident should not have happened because two days before, on March 11, the officer was accused of punching and arresting another student at the DeKalb Alternative School.


Channel 2 Action News reached out to the school district for comment, but officials declined to comment.

Channel 2 Action News has also requested body camera and security camera videos of the two alleged incidents, but the district declined our requests, citing a federal law that, if broken, could impact federal funding for the district.

Channel 2 Action News has offered to blur the students’ faces before airing, but the district has not responded to our requests. Financial records provided by the district show that DeKalb School police use Axon body cameras, which have the ability to blur students’ faces to protect their identities.

DCSD provided two heavily redacted reports from each incident.

On March 11, the officer arrested and charged a 15-year-old student with terroristic threats, according to an incident report provided by district officials.

“While conducting check-in operations, one of the students attempted to enter the building but was refused due to his attire,” the officer wrote in the report. “(student’s name redacted) left the building and returned to the check-in inside the entrance of the school.”

Channel 2 Action News filed a second open records request, seeking the supplemental reports, but the district denied our requests, citing the ongoing investigation. Channel 2 Action News also reviewed an incident report from the March 13 incident involving the officer and the 14-year-old student he’s accused of slamming on her head, knocking her unconscious, but there was no mention of the encounter.

“On Wednesday, March 13, 2024, at approximately 1125 hours I responded to the main hallway of (DeKalb Alternative School) 5855 Memorial Drive, Stone Mountain, Ga. in reference to a Physical altercation that occurred,” the officer wrote in his report.

When Channel 2 Action News reviewed the incident report, we found that it still had not been approved by a supervisor, which is a violation of the public safety department’s policy, according to sources close to the investigation.

One day before the officer was placed on leave, an incident report shows that he responded to at least one call on campus on March 18.

Channel 2 Action News reached out to the officer via email, but he has not yet responded to our requests for comment.

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