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Female High School Student Kicks Officer In The Head During Lunch Fight, Pays The Price

Photo Credit: WPLG Local 10

Photo Credit: WPLG Local 10

Note: we are republishing this story amid nationwide discussion regarding police accountability and the relationship between police officers and their communities.

On Thursday, a chaotic fight erupted at Homestead Senior School, with video following the fight showing an 18-year-old student kicking a Miami-Dade County Public Schools Police Department officer in the face.

The officer had responded to the scene following a report about five girls fighting during lunch time.

The video shows 18-year-old Shardae Yvonne Pittman trying to defend her friend, who was pinned face-down on the floor by the officer. Pittman first pushed the officer, and when he didn’t budge, she kept trying.

She was being held back by a man who appeared to be a teacher, but she was relentless.

Photo Credit: WPLG Local 10

Photo Credit: WPLG Local 10

When the officer pushed her away from him, Pittman responded by kicking him in the face.

John Shuster, a spokesman for Miami-Dade County Public Schools, stated that the officer was not hospitalized.

Daisy Gonzalez-Diego, a spokeswoman for the district, said in a statement: "Any behavior that endangers the well-being of students and staff at Miami-Dade County Public Schools will not be tolerated, will be handled swiftly and result in severe consequences."

According to a police report, the officer was identified as Officer Zapico.

In a statement posted on Twitter on Thursday night, Miami-Dade County Public Schools Police Chief Edwin Lopez said: "It is a shame that while this officer was attempting to break up a fight and maintain a safe learning environment, this adult student acted in a cowardly way."

Photo Credit: WPLG Local 10

Photo Credit: WPLG Local 10

According to police, Pittman had not been part of the initial fight.

Sharnell Lee, the mother of the 17-year-old girl who was pinned down, revealed that Pittman was her daughter's friend. Lee arrived at the school to demand answers and later picked up her daughter from a juvenile facility.

She called for authorities to charge the girls who attacked her daughter.

She said: "My daughter comes to school, she is supposed to be safe. Where was the security? Where was everybody when [the fight] took place? Why did she get in trouble? Why would a police officer have my daughter on the ground and allow the other young lady to spit in her face?"

Photo Credit: WPLG Local 10

Photo Credit: WPLG Local 10

Four of the girls who participated in the fight will face disciplinary action.

Lee's daughter and Pittman both face battery on a law enforcement officer charge. Pittman was also charged with educational interference. 

Sources: Local10.com

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