Officer Dennis Turner was on duty as a school resource officer when he arrested the students on misdemeanor charges, Lt. Wanda Miglio of the Orlando Police Department told BuzzFeed News. Turner did not follow the department's policy of requiring approval from a watch commander for the arrest of any children under the age of 12.
“There will be an internal investigation regarding these incidents,” Miglio said.
The officer is part of the department's reserve program and will be suspended from duty pending the outcome of the investigation.
"As a grandparent of three children less than 11 years old this is very concerning to me," Chief Orlando Rolón said in a statement. "Our Department strives to deliver professional and courteous service. My staff and I are committed to exceeding those standards and expectations."
The investigation comes after the 6-year-old's grandmother said the girl was handcuffed and taken away in a police car, drawing outrage and national headlines.
Meralyn Kirkland, 6-year-old Kaia Rolle's grandmother, told NBC affiliate WLFA that she was called Thursday and told her granddaughter had been arrested after throwing a tantrum at Lucious and Emma Nixon Academy, the Orlando charter school she attends as a first grader. Kirkland said she was told her granddaughter had been arrested on a battery charge.
The school didn't immediately return a request for comment.
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