(BRUSLY, La.) — Two former Louisiana police officers were indicted after surveillance footage surfaced in which they appear to be slamming a teenager to the ground, but the child’s family said the charges only amount to a “slap on the wrist.”
Former Brusly Police Department officers Dan Cipriano and Anthony Dupre were indicted on Friday, accused of assaulting a 14-year-old boy in October while responding to a report at Brusly Middle School in central Louisiana, according to court documents.
The officers were called to the scene when the child allegedly got into an argument with an administrator and tried to leave a school detention office, according to local media reports.
School surveillance footage appeared to show the officers, who agreed to resign in November, beating the boy and slamming him at least twice before placing him in handcuffs. At one point, the boy attempted to move toward the door, and an officer wraps an arm around the student’s neck and forces him to the floor as panicked administrators stand nearby.
Cipriano was indicted on a charge of simple battery and Dupre was indicted on a charge of malfeasance in office, but the boy’s family said those penalties are too lenient.
“They feel the DA’s office did an adequate job by bringing it quickly to the people, but feel it was a slap on the wrist based on the tape and what they saw done to their grandson,” Kwame Asante, a lawyer for the student’s family, told local news outlet The Advocate on Friday. “This young man will still be dealing with this for a long time.”
Malfeasance in office is punishable by up to five years in prison, or a fine of up to $5,000, or both, according to the Louisiana State Legislature, while simple battery carries a punishment of up to six months in prison, or up to $1,000 in fines, or both, under state law.
It was not immediately clear if the former officers had hired attorneys.
Officials with the Brusly Police Department and the West Baton Rouge parish School District did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.
Asante said the boy’s grandmother, in particular, “wanted to make sure someone was held responsible for what happened” and hoped for stiffer charges.
The teenager has returned to school and is in counseling following the incident, Asante said. The teen suffered unspecified physical injuries, and the family still is considering whether to pursue additional legal action against the police department.
“For a person who’s gone through what he has,” Asante said of the teen, “he’s done well.”
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