Police officer Jonathan Hardin was suspended without pay and arrested this week for allegedly assaulting two students at the Olmsted Academy North Middle School in Louisville, Kentucky.
Hardin, who worked at the school as a resource officer, was caught on surveillance cameras inside the school cafeteria allegedly punching a 13-year-old boy on Jan. 22 and choking a second student on Jan. 27, reports WLKY (video below).
Court papers claim that Hardin charged the 13 year old with menacing and resisting arrest, but did not have probable cause to do so. The student suffered injuries to his face and had to be treated at a local hospital. Hardin reportedly believed the boy had cut in line.
Court documents also say that five days later Hardin put the second student in a choke-hold and suspended him in the air. That student passed out and was later handcuffed by Hardin.
According to prosecutors, Hardin did not get the student medical help, kept him out of class for the rest of the day, drove him home and didn't "accurately report" to the boy's parents what had occurred, noted The Courier-Journal.
The student suffered brain damage due to a lack of blood flow, according to an unidentified doctor.
Hardin has been charged with first- and fourth-degree assault, wanton endangerment, official misconduct and false swearing.
Louisville Police Chief Steve Conrad said an investigation began after Jefferson County Public Schools alerted police. However, it's not clear when the police were alerted.
JCPS spokeswoman Helene Kramer was asked by The Courier-Journal why Hardin remained on the job at the school after the alleged Jan 22 incident, but would not comment at this time.