Group wants to remove school resource officers from Lake County Schools

Group wants to see funding go toward nurses, school counselors and mental health assistance

LAKE COUNTY, Fla. – A group of people gathered outside the Lake County School Board ahead of Monday’s school board meeting calling for the removal of school resource officers.

The group said they believe the resources should instead be used for other services like for nurses, school counselors and mental health assistance for students.

Lake County resident Cassandra Brown has two daughters; she spoke at the meeting on Monday.

[RELATED: Deputy’s use of Taser on Eustis High School student within agency policy, sheriff’s office says]

“This is unacceptable. Men should not be fighting with children,” Brown said.

The concern comes after a viral video from last month.

The video shows a female student striking deputy Billy Brown at Eustis High School’s Curtright Campus after a prior incident with another student.

Investigators said Deputy Brown later tased the girl in the cafeteria after investigators said she ignored his commands and came toward him aggressively.

“When was it OK for that man to pull out a taser and tase a child in front of everyone?” questioned Aryana Brown from Lake County.

Investigators said Deputy Brown has been cleared of any wrongdoing

“He did try verbal de-escalation, he did try to physically restrain her, but that didn’t work and I’m hoping this is the last time we are having this kind of conversation, but it’s important to keep us in the schools,” Lake County Sgt. Fred Jones said.

Sgt. Jones is a father of a black girl. He used to be a school resource deputy.

“I would not allow someone to stay employed who I feel brutalizes children,” Sgt. Jones said.

The Lake County School Board Chairman said taxpayers recently voted to have more security in schools and they’ve also used the funding for more services.

“To make sure every school has a mental health liaison and a nurse. We hired more social workers and counselors,” Chairman Bill Mathias said.

The Lake County Sheriff’s Office said they’re always working to better bridge the gap with kids and that law enforcement is needed in schools.

About the Author:

Jerry Askin is an Atlanta native who came to News 6 in March 2018 with an extensive background in breaking news.