SAN ANTONIO --Officials in Texas were investigating video that purportedly shows a school district police officer body-slamming a middle school student to the ground.
The officer said he was trying to prevent a fight, but Janissa Valdez, the student who was thrown down, describes watching the video as an out-of-body experience.
She is just 12 years old, in the 6th grade at a school in San Antonio. Many of her classmates reacted by laughing and she struggled to remember the incident.
She said the students in the hallway had been anticipating a fight between her and another girl.
"I was going up to her to tell her let's go somewhere else so we could talk," she said. "But that's whenever the cop thought I was going at her."
It took a few days for the Valdez family to see the cellphone video, which went viral after being posted on a local blog.
"You could just hear where she hits the ground, and it's nothing but concrete, cement," the girl's mother Gloria Valdez said. "She wasn't moving. She was just knocked out. I wanted answers, and nobody could give me answers. I contacted the vice principal. I talked to the officer. He did what he had to do at the moment, those were his words."
San Antonio Independent School District spokesperson Leslie Price said the officer has been placed on paid leave.
"It's very concerning," Price said. "It's alarming to see this."
The video is now the driving force behind two investigations - one by police and the other by administrators.
"And while we want to get all the details, I want people to know that excessive force will not be tolerated in this district," Price said.
The district identified the officer as Joshua Kehm, on the force for a little more than a year.
Janissa said there was just one word for his actions.
"Wrong," she said. "Because I wasn't going to do anything."
Kehm's job is now on the line.
"That's up to the district," Gloria Valdez said. "I just don't want that done to another student or to my daughter again."
Kehm was contacted for comment, but he replied he will not be making a statement at this time.
In the meantime, Janissa has been checked out by doctors. She had a big bump on her head, but she will be OK. The decision as to whether or not Kehm will keep his job will follow pending investigations.