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Video: San Antonio SRO's Use of Force Against Student Investigated

April 07, 2016  | 

VIDEO: San Antonio SRO's Use of Force Against Student Investigated

A San Antonio, TX, school police officer has been placed on leave while the district investigates a video purporting to show him throwing a 12-year-old girl onto the ground last week, reports Fox News.

San Antonio Independent School District spokeswoman Leslie Price told the San Antonio Express-News that Officer Joshua Kehm intervened in a verbal argument between two girls at Rhodes Middle School on March 29.

"We need to find out the details as to what occurred, but I can say that we will not tolerate excessive force in this district," Price told KSAT.

The 33-second video, which the Express-News reported was posted to YouTube Tuesday, shows Kehm struggling to restrain the student, identified as Janissa Valdez. Kehm then throws her to the ground and handcuffs her before picking her up and walking her away.

KSAT reported that a group of students claimed that Valdez kicked the officer several times before he grabbed her. Valdez denied doing so, telling the station that she was suspended from school for two days as a result of the initial confrontation.

"I was upset. I was angry, because I still couldn't believe that he had done that to her," Valdez's mother Gloria said. "And then she told me 'Mom, I wasn't fighting. Why would he do that?'"

Price said the district's police department and the school administration were investigating the incident.

Comments (52)

Displaying 1 - 52 of 52

Robert @ 4/7/2016 2:50 PM

So, I will pre-empt the conversation...
1. We don't know what happened...she could have a weapon that wasn't shown.
2. The SRO feared for his life.
3. All the victim had to do was comply.
4. The SRO was within his legal rights.
5. It is Obama's fault...substitute the DOJ/Feds here.
6. It is the media's fault.
7. She is a bad person, with bad parents...good 12 yo kids (like my kids...and all the good people I know) never get in fights at school.
8. It is the systems / school districts fault for putting the SRO in such a split second, life or death situation.
9. She wasn't even hurt...after she woke up, she walked it off.

So, I think I have all of the arguments for those who will feel the SRO didn't do anything wrong. Let me know if I missed any?

Now, how would you feel if your kid was treated like this. I would have a long chat with my kid + the SRO who did this would hope that I never, ever see him.
What BS..this guy is on a taxpayer funded vacation vs jail!!

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/7/2016 3:27 PM

Robert, its too bad that the whole video wasn't shown, if any more footage exists. Its only 33 seconds. I do however, support the SRO on this. I believe you already listed all of the good arguments so I won't go into detail.

Robert @ 4/7/2016 3:45 PM

SES...and this just shows the type of person you are.
Basically, a small minded clueless individual...the day you get a gun and badge, will be a sorry day for our society in general and your community in particular.
Keep drinking the neo-conservative, law and order centered... Kool Aid!!

Percy @ 4/7/2016 4:04 PM

Robert said pretty much what I am feeling about this video, other than the fact that it sickens me. There was no doubt in my mind the badge bunny would be the 1st pro police comment on this story. How do you know the whole video wasn't shown or is this another of your tinfoil hat conspiracies like the Slager video being doctored?
How can you support the SRO with so little to go on other than a 200lb+ "man" throwing a 12 year old girl face first into concrete?
My sincere hope is that this creature has a daughter about 12 years old and she disowns, that is what he deserves.

Robert I am noticing a certain snark in your comments, happened much qicker to you than I.

Graham vs Connor will probably be quoted by the investigation, she did ater all have a cell phone.

Badge Bunny you won't go into detail because you simply don't know how. You blindly support le in all circumstances and even went as far as to call Patrick Lynch a good guy.

OK then @ 4/7/2016 5:38 PM

I highly doubt this student was sitting there minding her own business and this guy decided slamimg her to the ground was a good way to spend some time.

Leonard Mather @ 4/7/2016 6:01 PM

First things first, and back to basics! Principals, Teachers and Parents as well as the School Board need to insist that Teachers maintain classroom management. Police Officers are to Patrol the city streets and NOT get involved with classroom management. Get organized! Do the Teachers, Principal, Board of Education and parents know and understand the concept of "In Loco Parentis?"

Captain Steve @ 4/7/2016 6:13 PM

Reasonable force under the totality of the circumstances. Hopefully a competent investigation will determine that. The rest is conjecture, wishful thinking and a rush to judgment. Never a good thing.

Captain Steve @ 4/7/2016 6:16 PM

That was meant to be a question, not a statement. If it is not reasonable force, he is toast. I hope they find video of what occurred before the takedown. Relying upon the statements of middle schoolers as your main proof would not be good thing.

Mike @ 4/7/2016 6:23 PM

School spokeswoman Price said the district WILL NOT TOLERATE EXCESSIVE FORCE... apparently they tolerate students assaulting other students and teachers though... good to know

Mike @ 4/7/2016 6:25 PM

The teachers understand in loco parentis, but the administration won't let them act with that authority because the parents throw a fit when it's their out of control child who's being brought under control by someone else

FDC @ 4/7/2016 6:35 PM

Robert that is what I like about people like you. Talk real bad hiding behind that keyboard. Glad you know what happened without all the facts. If that was my daughter I would get all the facts and Then take action. If she was wrong she would get her punishment and I would Thank the officer for doing his job. If she were right then I would go after the officers badge and sue the department. Then again I am a grown man who uses his brains before making decisions. You are a prime reason things are going to hell in America and that is because you are assuming, sans factual evidence, the SRO was wrong for what he did. Get ALL the facts and then sound off all you want and I will back you 100%.

OK then @ 4/7/2016 6:37 PM

I always felt school safety officers were a bandaid on a much larger problem that so far no one in the education business cares to address.

FDC @ 4/7/2016 6:45 PM

Percy you're doing the same thing that the"badge bunny" did and that is make a judgement without the whole story. so it's not all right for him but it is all right for you? Why don't you guys wait till the whole story comes out before you make any judgments so you don't have to eat crow later. I am almost certain that if the SRO is cleared because of further evidence coming out that you won't have anything to say because all you want to do is blame the SRO.

Percy @ 4/7/2016 7:06 PM

I just reread my post and I'm at a loss as to what part of it you are referring to.
The only statements I made were that I agreed with Robert and that what I saw in the video
sickens me. Those are both opinions. I said I knew that badge bunny would be the 1st to comment. True. I mentioned his comment about the video, and his previous comment about the Slager shooting video being doctored by the media. True, sad but true.
I then asked a question, stated a hope, and said I noticed a change in the way Robert comments. I then made 2 statement that may be speculative in nature but boy is history on my side on both.
Also and I will make this statement the SRO was wrong.
If that is what passes for le policy these days then.......
@ Captain Steve
Please explain how that could possibly be considered reasonable force?
I don't believe she picked him up and dropped him on his face
Do you think we should only rely on the statements of someone who could lose his job and face charges?

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/7/2016 7:25 PM

I did not state that the Slager shooting video was doctored by the "media". Its also quite possible that I'm wrong about that, although I have my doubts. For a prime suspect, look no farther than "black thugs matter".

Percy @ 4/7/2016 7:59 PM

@ Sheriffs Explorer Sgt.

So you are saying that you didn't state something, that it's quiite possible you are wrong about it, and that you have doubts. As a sentence or thought that is a 12 car pile up son.

So let's look at the evidence.

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt stated on 3/30/2016 4:51 PM
"Robert, rational thought is not something you, percy, or leonard are skilled in. I'll even dare to suggest that the media are liars. If the video shows the Officer planting the tazer, then maybe it was edited. Why do you think it took the guy so long to come forward with his supposed evidece.???"

Nightstalker @ 4/7/2016 8:10 PM

Percy, Why is it every time you come onto this site you rip down Sheriffs Explorer Sgt as he has the right to come onto this site as you and i think he would make a dam good cop one day and as for this girl kicking the officer theres no excuse for that as if people would listen to officers none of this would happen.

Robert @ 4/7/2016 8:13 PM

FDC...what is really needed to know besides the video. We are talking about a 95lb girl in school....was she some sort of judo master!

What possible fact could warrant that amount of force? Again, we have (at worst) 2 girls getting in a fight at school...this is not some type of Mexican Mafia drug raid.

You are the worst type of LEO.
--No video evidence; you always believe the LEO; the witnesses are lying
--Video evidence: must be more to the story; need to wait.
Your world..LEO always right; citizen always wrong!

You can see the is almost the exact same as the situation a year ago...Alexis Acker. The LEO over-reacted in that situation...and then lied (said he escorted her to the floor) the taxpayers will lose another lawsuit.

The only question left to answer is whether this is a policy problem (no one trained the idiot that he was dealing with children in school)....or a personal problem (he was trained, and he just can't control his emotions).

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/7/2016 8:14 PM

I was saying that the media is extremely prejudiced toward the Police 99.9% of the time. However, if the video was edited I would cast an accusing glance at "black thugs matter". They're mixed up in all this a whole lot more than you think. On a side note; you're right, my last comment was poorly written.

Percy @ 4/7/2016 8:22 PM

@ Nightstalker

Go back a few weeks and see how this started.

EXACTLY what is it that makes you think he will be a dam good cop?

I don't know if this girl kicked the officer or not, but I'm not surprised that you believe it.
Remember what Captain Steve said,
"Relying upon the statements of middleschoolers as your main proof would not be good thing".

So no video, only middleschoolers and someone who has a lot to lose.

Well this is a head scratcher maybe even a paradox.

Oh hell let's just do what always happens clear the cop administratively and criminally and leave the taxpayers with the tab.

Either way in my opinion the guy is a monster.

Tschako @ 4/7/2016 10:03 PM

Why is it that you cop-haters feel that all force has to be equal. You always assume that the police are there to be everyone's punching bag, or pistol target, and that is part of the job. Well, yes it is, because there's always assholes like you out there. This has nothing to do with this particular incident. You don't belong here. I'm not sure you belong anywhere.

Robert @ 4/7/2016 10:21 PM

Do you really think there will be an investigation ?
Within a week the guys buddy's, who know someone on the investigation team will tell the guy he is toast...suspended and fired.
He will quit before that happens...the investigation will stop, as the LEO no longer is employed as an SRO.

The LEO will then apply to every LE agency that has an opening....and since he wasn't fired and has no black marks on his record (the investigation will stop when he quits)....he will get hired again. No final investigation = no loss of credential!

We should start the betting now:
--small town police or sherif deputy 2:1 odds
--state trooper 3:1
--San Antonio suburb 4:1
--border patrol 6:1
--neighboring state 6:1
Any other guesses where he lands

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/7/2016 11:02 PM

I would go with Deputy, however I think the investigation will clear him.

RG @ 4/8/2016 5:48 AM

Percy vs Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. Episode 7. Not bad, not too many commercials in between. Should get a decent Neilson rating.

PoPo @ 4/8/2016 6:59 AM

SES vs. Percy who wins? No one. Couple things I would like to add. Cops pay taxes thus cops are taxpayers too. Cops have emotions, thus cops are humans too. Cops would rather do positive things thus cops are good people. But are expected to be marriage counselors, conflict resolution specialists, social workers, behavioral health therapists, teachers, mentors, sometimes take a life, mostly protect lives, loss prevention, security guards, save drivers from drunk drivers, take a bullet, get stabbed, spit on, punched, kicked, assaulted (49,000 times annually), smile, not be rude, not disrespect a gang member because he had a bad life and so on and so on. Name one other profession that has that level of unrealistic expectations of their employees?

PoPo @ 4/8/2016 7:08 AM

Oh by the way. Law Enforcement may not be the most "deadly" profession per capita, but certainly the most dangerous. As I mentioned above, over 49,000 assaults on police officers per year. What other profession has that many "attacks" based on their job description? Certainly not crab fisherman, underwater divers, tree trimmers or any other profession I can think of. Even soldiers don't get physically assaulted as many times as law enforcement per year.

Robert @ 4/8/2016 7:43 AM

A couple of points:
"Name one other profession that has that level of unrealistic expectations of their employees?"...if the expectation was defined before you took the job; it is NOT an unrealistic expectation. IF the expectation changed while you were employed, and you continue to be agreed to the change.
Bottom line, if you don't like the job (or the "unrealistic expectations" then quit).

What is the difference between an assault and a workplace injury around heavy machinery?

49,000 assaults per year...however, there are either 1.1MM or 750K (depending upon the stat you use).
This equates to about 1 assault per 30 to 40 LEOs...or taken another way; if you are a LEO and work 15-20 years, there is a 50% chance you will be assaulted.

Next, what constitutes "assault" in your stat? Is this a lost work day/dart event incident or any medical attention (recordable incident)...or 49k criminal assaults with convictions/guilty pleas?

Mickey @ 4/8/2016 8:16 AM

First: according to the other students she kicked the officer several times before the video started. So that's aggravated battery. Second: the video clearly shows her struggling against the officer trying to fold her, who then decides that the next step up in force to control her is to get her to the ground. There is not separate training for dealing with adults vs. preteens, so I'm betting he did exactly what his training told him to do with an adult in this situation.

Third, when this was on TV in the morning news, I pointed at it to my 8 year old, made her watch it, and said if she ever fought a cop like that she had it coming. If the cop's wrong I'd deal with it later in court like we're supposed to. Lets quit blaming the cops for their response to crappy parenting.
When my mom and her siblings were kids, if the cop next door caught them being jack wagons they got whooped, and brought back home to grandpa where they got whooped again. When did we become such sissy's?

John retired IA PD @ 4/8/2016 8:43 AM

It used to be that if you got into trouble at school, you were also in trouble at home. Now if you get into trouble at school, it must be the fault of the school, or LE. It couldn't be poor parenting. Lets sue everyone who was picking on my child. Why do we have / need police in the schools? The trouble starts long before the child gets to school. Teachers are criticized for trying to deal with the problems so officers are brought into the school to handle situations that the school can't or won't address. Much easier to have the police there to take the heat.

Leonard @ 4/8/2016 9:47 AM

This incident, among others, just reinforce my belief that POLICE DO NOT BELONG IN SCHOOLS....PERIOD. They are a danger to our children.

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/8/2016 10:37 AM

Mass murderers who perpetrate school shootings are the real danger to schoolchildren. If the schools got rid of all their SROs and there was a shooting the next week, who would people blame? The Police for not being at the school to protect their kids.

Robert @ 4/8/2016 11:30 AM

Aggravated you are saying her feet were deadly weapons? Does she play for the USWNT in soccer? (or at least the under 16 team...since she was 12).

You made my point with your second line "there is not different training for dealing with pre-teens than adults" you are saying it is a policy issue; and the idiot was never trained better. That will make the lawsuit tougher to defend.

Mickey and John..
From my original list, you missed the following:
5. It is Obama's fault...substitute the DOJ/Feds here.
6. It is the media's fault.
Are you sure you don't want to add these points to your could hit all of the standards that way?

Mickey...I will give you credit for this is similar to your "my mom was beaten as a child...and survived statement".
9. She wasn't even hurt...after she woke up, she walked it off.

People with no respect for human life, should never be allowed to carry guns.

FDC @ 4/8/2016 2:32 PM

Robert, have you ever had someone kick you in the nads or on your shin bone? He used force to get her to stop kicking him. I never sided with anyone. What I did say was wait for all the evidence. There is more to this story than a 30 second snippet. There aer witnesses to be interviewed (someone took the video DUH) and you can hear others in the background. Wait til all the evidence is in before you rush to judgement but like I said... all you can see is the video and rushed to judge the whole thing. Maybe it is a good thing you are not an officer because you made a judgement on half the clues. There was a movie about people like you and it was called clueless. You talk about controlling ones emotions but you used a veiled threat on the SRO so I guess you cannot control your emotions either. "what is the difference between an assault and a workplace injury around heavy machinery"? Really??? One is the result of someone doing an intentional act and the other is an ACCIDENT! Wow!

FDC @ 4/8/2016 2:34 PM

Robert, there is more to the definition of aggravated assault then use of a deadly weapon. Besides you may not be aware of this but if you hit or kick a law enforcement officer it is a FELONY.

FDC @ 4/8/2016 2:43 PM

Percy, First: according to the other students she kicked the officer several times before the video started. So that's Battery on a law enforcement Officer (a FELONY). Second: the video clearly shows her struggling against the officer trying to fold her, who then decides that the next step up in force to control her is to get her to the ground. There is no separate training for dealing with adults vs. preteens, so I'm betting he did exactly what his training told him to do with an adult in this situation.
Third, you sided against the SRO based solely on a 30 second snippet of video. There are witnesses to interview( someone videotaped the incident and there are other voices in the background). Lets do a hypothetical here and say you got arrested for murder and a small videotape of you hitting the suspect, who is later found dead, but we did not interview any witnesses or gather any type of evidence. Would you expect to be found guilty?

FDC @ 4/8/2016 2:45 PM

Percy another thing. What would you do if a small man kicked you several times? Would you just walk away or would you fight back?

FDC @ 4/8/2016 2:48 PM

Robert why do you call the officer an idiot? How would you like to have someone call you an idiot? Professional responses should be just that!

Robert @ 4/8/2016 4:20 PM

Where to start....I will start at the end.
1. I call him an idiot, because he is a grown adult...and basically abused a 12 year old child. That is a universal idiot in my mind. You are right, I do not know his IQ
2. Your comment to he should not fight back. You are the adult...and the child is a child.
3. You started out at aggravated you are at felony battery. Keep searching and you can make a charge stick eventually. Good luck with the judge, explaining how the 90 lb -- 12 yo girl made you fear for your safety.
4. The force was used was after any stated yourself it was not on the video (but instead was told to someone by another child).
5. I will admit my emotions got the better of me...but this has to stop somewhere. I have no tolerance for abuse of children and abuse of power...this guy checked both boxes!
The police in this country are losing the consent of the governed each and every time these incidents happen.

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/8/2016 8:26 PM

Robert, so you're saying that the Police are losing the citizens approval simply for doing their jobs. It seems that more people are becoming liberals; or else, they're the only ones speaking out. Society is all screwed up today.

Robert @ 4/8/2016 9:09 PM

Doing your job no
The dynamic is changing...before the LEOs who were awful at there job (5-15%); would lie and other LEOs would cover for them. The case would go to court; and the jurors would give great weight to the LEO. There were almost no police convictions for crimes (and very few charged).
Today the video camera (security and cell phone) have caught multiple LEOs lying. This has caused the public to take a look at there police forces...and many don't like what they see.
I don't have the stats but I bet more LEOs will be charged with homicide this year than any ptrvious year.
So either cops today are more inclined to murder people or those in the past got away with murder. DAs are no longer going to risk thei career covering for LEOs.
That is a fundamental shift in attitude.
LEOs have a choice....keep covering for the minority of bad LEOs or start calling them out on their attitude, methods and actions.
Of course you believe the Sleger video is fake..

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/8/2016 9:37 PM

The Slaver video might be fake, its something to think about. And have we heard Slavers side of the story yet??? No, and, how long did it take Santana to come forward with his "evidence"?? "Local residents (N. Charleston) have complained that policing in N. Charleston includes the harassment and racial profiling of African Americans". Quote from wikipedia. That's bull. Its a lot "black thugs matter" propaganda. They're feeding it hand over fist to the black community and they're loving it. The media said that Santana didn't come forward with his "evidence" right away because he feared retribution from the Police. Have the Police tried to get revenge? NO. Also its hard to believe that a drug addict and a convicted felon is innocent and a Police Officer is guilty. You anti cops always side with the crackhead. And why??

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/8/2016 9:41 PM

I'm just trying to say, wait until the trials over before you condemn him. He's been charged, not convicted.

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/8/2016 11:22 PM

I'm applying with the "RCMP".

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/8/2016 11:37 PM

Just kidding of course. And why do you folks always side with the crackheads?

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/8/2016 11:48 PM

I hadn't thought that you'd approve of the RCMP. I'm glad you appreciate them.

Mickey @ 4/9/2016 2:13 AM

@ Robert:

1) In my state striking an officer armed or unarmed is aggravated battery.
2) My point was not that kids can take a beating and survive to be well adjusted adults, it is that it takes a community to raise a child. They type of parents that wont allow any discipline form anyone outside the home are the same type that don't discipline at all and hence do not instill respect.
3) Knocking the girl out was an unfortunate consequence of the technique and even if it was my kid and she was wrong I'd not be happy about it, but a 12 year old can easily throw her head back and knock out teeth or break his nose. Please do tell, how would you recommend the officer subdue a kid who is fighting another student and proceeds to fight against him going so far as to repeatedly kick him?

The problem with this generation of kids is a problem of our own creation.

FDC @ 4/9/2016 2:38 AM

Robert, again you go with the pre-judging! commonly called prejudice.. nobody in this thread ever stated the SRO was in fear for his life. An officer does not have to be in fear for his life to use force! If a suspect is resisting, committing a crime or you observe him committing a crime and you give the suspect orders to do something and the suspects resists you can use force to control the situation. IF a suspect is kicking you get that suspect off his feet and on the ground where you can apply restraints and stop the suspect from kicking you. The SRO is NOT fighting back he is trying to restrain the suspect...BIG difference. I am stating the facts when it comes to battery on a LEO, if you do not understand that then that is your malfunction. The video does NOT show everything, if enough students say the same thing then maybe there is some truth to it. There is no abuse of anything. Lastly WTH does "losing the consent of the governed" even mean???

Robert @ 4/9/2016 10:25 PM

1. Okay you are right; let's charge her as an adult with Agr Battery...and give here 25 years...that would be justice served. It will sure as hell act as a deterrent to those other 12 year olds! Keep blaming the victim.
2. Agreed.
3. Did the SRO lose teeth now?

I did not pre-judge...I had nothing against the SRO until the video came out.
I posted the my top 9 list of LEO excuses for bad is a universal list. Except, it appears I need to add #10 (just like Letterman)...10. The video is a fake / hoax (SES added this one).
Lets get legal..
Did the officer identify himself first and state the student was under arrest...or just grab her.
Did the LEO have probable cause to make an arrest...the student claims no fight was occurring.
Not fighting back! What do you call body slamming a 12 year old child?

Consent of the governed is a theory, thought up by some outlaws in Philly about 200+ years ago...Neo-Cons and Liberal Dems don't understand!

Sheriffs Explorer Sgt. @ 4/10/2016 6:41 AM

Robert, the student should and will be charged as a juvenile, not as an adult. 25 years is a little too much. I'm sure the SRO had probable cause, you think she was chattering with a friend and the SRO was bored so he decided to body slam some random student??? I checked out Consent of the Governed and I don't see that that has anything to do with this case. It just describes a democratic society.

RG @ 4/11/2016 9:55 AM

Why do you Canadians care what the hell we do here. You never have to step foot in our country. By the Way Percy, did you pick Willet for the Masters? I never heard of the dude.

Leonard @ 4/11/2016 3:19 PM

Update to this story. The. Officer just lost his on. Good riddance!!

Mickey @ 4/11/2016 11:07 PM

@ robert & percy
1) no I am not recommending she actually be charged with agg. batt. I am simply putting her actions and the officers into context. Any charges against her should simply end in a fine, which at her age the parents would end up paying. Rightfully so considering they're doing a bang up job teaching her to fight cops.
2) Robert, you still haven't told me how you'd stop this. Again, admittedly the body slam was not the best choice. And I never said his teeth were knocked out, I just stated the potential in the situation that could justify the level of force
3) As of this post the officer lost his job for A) potential excessive force, which is debatable. B) delayed statement: which is only a problem if it was delayed to hide something. C) a statement that contradicts the video. This is the most important one. If he lied then he believed he may have been in the wrong. And any officer who knowingly makes false statements in a report should be fired on the spot.

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