More Cops Should Deal With Fighting Kids Like This Officer

October 28th 2015

A Washington, D.C. police officer is making headlines for her unique method of breaking up a high school fight with a fierce, minutes-long dance-off—all captured on a bystander's cell phone earlier this week.

The police officer, whose name is not immediately known, is getting praise after engaging students in a positive way to shut down conflict at Ballou High School Monday afternoon. This happened just as the country is responding to viral video showing a South Carolina officer who was fired Wednesday after he grabbed a 15-year-old student, flipped her while she sat in her desk, and dragged her across a classroom floor.

According to the Washington Post and the student's Facebook page, the officer was attempting to tell two students to disperse and go home.

"So basically I was trynna get to this girl but the police told me to go home so we made this deal," the video's caption reads. "[I]f i win u leave but if u win i step andddddd she step." What escalated thereafter was an example of "Nae Nae"-tinged community-focused policing that provided a respite from the week's debased standard of police-student relations.

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"Instead of us fighting, she tried to turn it around and make it something fun," Aaliyah Taylor, the 17-year-old senior who dance-battled the as-yet unnamed cop told the Washington Post. "I never expected cops to be that cool."

"There are some good cops," Taylor added.

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Another well-known viral video

National attention was captured this week by disturbing viral video of one South Carolina school resource officer's take-down of a disruptive student in class. Since then, former South Carolina sheriff's deputy Ben Fields—who was seen in the video throwing a Spring Valley High School student to the ground while she sat in a desk, then dragging her across a classroom floor—was fired by his department Wednesday.

Fields' case shone light on school resource officers broadly, a segment of law enforcement whose lack of education expertise and penchant to resort to tough crime tactics on students' indiscretions has caused concern among researchers and activists.

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