The 16-year-old girl featured in a viral video (shown below) that showed her brutal arrest by a school resource officer is a recent orphan living in foster care, according to the girl's attorney, Todd Rutherford.
On Oct. 28, Rutherford spoke to the NY Daily News in an interview, in which he also revealed that the girl suffered injuries on her neck, face and arm.
The foster mother told NY Daily News that the girl — whose identity has not been revealed — has been devastated and emotionally traumatized by all that she's been through.
Rutherford will serve as legal counsel for both the 16-year-old and 18-year-old student Niya Kenny, who said that she was arrested for standing up for her classmate, according to WLTX.
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Kenny spoke out about the incident.
"I know this girl don't got nobody and I couldn't believe this was happening," Kenny told WLTX in a separate interview. "I had never seen nothing like that in my life, a man use that much force on a little girl.
"A big man, like 300 pounds of full muscle. I was like, 'no way, no way.' You can't do nothing like that to a little girl. I'm talking about she's like 5'6."
Kenny told MSNBC that she had a feeling something bad was about to happen when Officer Ben Fields entered the classroom. She added that Fields is known to the students as “Officer Slam.”
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Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott said that he did not know if race was a factor in the case, but he did not think so because Fields has been dating an African-American woman for “quite some time.” However, Fields has been the subject of racial bias and excessive force allegations in the past.
Fields has since been fired from his job.
A probe into whether or not the girl had her civil rights violated will be conducted by the FBI and the Department of Justice. Superintendent Debbie Hamm said the district is strengthening its training program for school resource officers so that such an incident does not happen again.