A police officer of the Camden Police Department has been suspended pending an investigation following an incident with a Camden Fairview High School student, an official statement said.
“Because of the video I saw, effective immediately, Officer Perry has been relieved of his duties pending the investigation and the outcome of it,” police chief, Boyd M. Woody, said.
“I just wanted everybody to know, including the mayor that as the police chief, I’m not going to tolerate misconduct from officers from this department.”
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The officer, who has been identified as Jake Perry, reportedly put a student in a chokehold after an altercation. Woody said Perry has been with the police department for two to three years.
In the video that circulated on social media, Perry can be seen putting the ninth-grade student, Dekyrion Ellis at Camden Fairview High School in a chokehold, pulling him slightly backward by his neck, KTVE reports.
The video has garnered 18, 000 shares as of Monday evening.
According to KTVE, Ellis, was arguing with a friend when Perry, who was assigned to the high school as a school resource officer, intervened.
“I feared for my life,” Ellis said. “I didn’t know what was going to happen. I blacked out. I really didn’t see anything until he took me back to the office.”
The student said he was embarrassed by the incident.
In a statement, the Camden Fairview School District said the district was aware of the incident.
“I have been informed that the officer involved has been relieved of duty pending an investigation by CPD,” Superintendent Fred Lilly said in the statement. “CFSD will fully cooperate with the CPD’s investigation.”
“In order to prevent similar incidents from occurring in the future, CFSD will work with the CPD to ensure that current policies and procedures for all SRO’s stationed at CFSD schools are reviewed and revised if necessary. CFSD’s first priority is, and will continue to be, to provide an excellent education to all of our student in a safe environment.”