An Oklahoma City high school resource officer has been arrested and charged with assault after surveillance video captured an incident on camera.
According to KFOR, Thomas Jaha, a 25-year veteran with the Oklahoma City Police Department, was working at U.S. Grant High School when a 16-year-old male student appeared in the hallway without a hall pass. The officer reportedly told the student to get to class. A police report, viewed by the news station, indicates that the student ignored several requests made by the officer to get back to his class.
The officer approached the teen and said that the teen took a fighting stance. Jaha said in the report that he believed that he needed to defend himself, so he punched the teen in the face. The officer said that after the first punch, the teen again took a fighting stance, so he hit him again with his left fist, KFOR reports.
"It's my understanding that a parent did take the individual to a hospital," Mark Myers, with Oklahoma City Public Schools, told the news station.
After school officials watched the footage, they contacted the police.
"If he believed that he was going to be hurt or he was going to be attacked, then obviously he has the right and the opportunity to defend himself," Oklahoma City Police Capt. Paco Balderrama told KFOR. "At the same time, you know, we have to meet that appropriately."
The Police Department investigated the incident and handed its findings over to the district attorney, who filed one count of assault and battery against Jaha.
KFOR contacted the teen's family, who told the news station that they have hired a lawyer.
Read more at KFOR.