Florida police officer suspended after arresting 6-year-old girl
A Florida cop was suspended pending an internal investigation after he arrested two young students following separate incidents on Thursday.
Officer Dennis Turner of the Orlando Police Department was on duty as a school resource officer at Lucious and Emma Nixon Academy, a kindergarten through 5th-grade charter school, when he arrested both of the children on unrelated misdemeanor charges, WFLA reported.
One of the students, a 6-year-old identified by her family as Kaia Rolle, was reportedly having a temper tantrum caused by what her family said was a lack of sleep due to a medical condition when she kicked someone. Turner intervened and placed Kaia in handcuffs, charging the child with battery.
Kaia was transported to a juvenile detention center where her arrest was halted after a supervisor learned Turner did not follow proper procedure, which requires officers to obtain the approval of a watch commander before arresting anyone under the age of 12, according to Orlando Police Chief Orlando Rolón.
Kaia's grandmother, Meralyn Kirkland, expressed shock over the incident, claiming her granddaughter even had her fingerprints and a mugshot taken while she was detained.
"No 6-year-old child should be able to tell somebody that they had handcuffs on them," she told WFLA.
The other student in question, who is also reportedly 6 years old, was taken to the same juvenile detention center and was later released to family members, although details on that arrest remain unclear.