ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — A battery charge has been filed against an Orange County deputy who was fired in November after he was captured on video yanking a girl’s head.
Cellphone video of the incident surfaced on social media and the Orange County Sheriff’s Office also released body camera footage appearing to show then-school resource officer Harry Reid pulling the 13-year-old girl’s hair.
The family of the teenager, Wilmica Edmond, said back in November that they were considering filing battery charges against Reid. Records show those charges were filed Jan. 30.
Watch cellphone video of the incident below:
Watch bodycam video of the incident below:
Edmond’s aunt Frances Jasmin told Channel 9 investigative reporter Daralene Jones that the family was glad to find out the charged had been filed.
“She was afraid to go to school. She is afraid to talk to people. She was like hiding. She has a fear behind her head that anything can happen to them, until now,” her aunt said.
The State Attorney’s Office released the following statement regarding the charges:
“On January 30, 2020, our office did in fact file an Information charging Harry Reid, the former Orange County Sheriff’s Deputy accused of pulling a girl by the hair, with one count of Battery. This is an open and active investigation which limits our ability to comment any further.”
Investigators said a fight between girls at Westridge Middle School spilled over into the parking lot of a nearby apartment complex, which is where the incident occurred.
"You're the one that started this **** at school," Reid is heard saying in a video of the incident.
Sheriff John Mina said Reid was removed from the school and fired after the video surfaced.
“That deputy’s behavior and actions violated many policies, our standards, but more importantly, the visions and expectations I’ve set as sheriff and definitely will not be tolerated,” Mina said following Reid’s firing. “I want our deputy sheriffs to know that as well and I hope this sends a strong message not only to our community, but also to our deputy sheriffs.”
Edmond’s family attorney, Ryan Fletcher, said the family plans to file a lawsuit, which may be put on hold until the criminal case wraps up.
“This is, I think, an important step forward, and a precedent for the Orlando community and Central Florida community, in that the state is not going to tolerate excessive force and any abuse of force, against the citizens and especially our vulnerable children in schools,” Fletcher said.
© 2020 Cox Media Group