Police Abuse

Cop Roughs Up High School Girls, Tickets School Board Member Trying to Intervene

He's been "relieved of duty," but the city won't say whether he's being paid or not.



An officer in Orange, New Jersey, was caught on video roughing up two girls outside a high school, tossing one of them by her hair, and also ticketing a school board member who tried to de-escalate the situation.

Officer Hanifah Davis was "relieved of duty" (that is, suspended), but city officials insist they haven't decided whether he'll be paid while on suspension or not (which means that he likely will be, and that the poverty-stricken city is seeking to avoid the bad publicity paying a toxic cop not to work could yield).

This was not Davis' first controversy. Though he's been on the job just three and a half months, he's already under investigation for an incident where he brandished his service weapon while trying to break up a crowd allegedly loitering and gambling. That investigation is still ongoing.

Ideally, departments could terminate officers who reveal themselves to be problem cops before they get too violent. A zero tolerance policy for police misconduct could get cops off the force before they're involved in major controversies.

Students organized a walkout Friday to protest the incident, chanting, "We want justice." The students should protest their school administrators too, for systematically relying on law enforcement for discipline.

Orange is a town of 30,000 with a per capita income of $20,000. The salary for principals in the area starts at more than $100,000. It should not be too much to expect that such school professionals should be able to keep order on school grounds without uniformed police officers. If they are unable to do that, they should step aside for someone who is.

Introducing police officers into schools isn't a solution to discipline; it's an abrogation of responsibility. In recent years especially, administrators have tended to seek out blanket policies they can defer to rather than making the informed decisions they ought to be expected to make as professionals.

The girls manhandled by Davis participated in the walkout. They say they'd like to see the cop fired and jailed. With the job protections enjoyed by most cops in New Jersey, that's unlikely to happen. But perhaps they could convince administrators to keep cops out of schools rather than inviting them in.

Watch footage of the altercation in the segment below:

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  1. Three observations from someone who is automatically skeptical of actions of law-enforcement:

    1. Whether it was justified or not those girls were not treated all that roughly.

    2. The video proves nothing. It doesn’t show what happened prior to the incident.

    3. The writer’s comment that school officials should be able to keep order on school grounds without uniformed police officers shows an egregious ignorance of what students are like today and the shackles that have been put on school administrators.

    1. Those shackles were imposed by legislators and judges and can be removed by legislators and judges.

      Of course, while the shackles remain in place it’s rational to oursource discipline to cops – but not to this cop.

      The police spokesman in the news story said he was shocked by the guy’s behavior and it was “not normal.”

      1. “Those shackles were imposed by legislators and judges.” Shackles imposed by legislators and judges are still shackles. What’s your point?
        “…but not to this cop.” How is that at all related to any of my observations? I made no reference to whether this guy should be a cop.
        “The police spokesman … said he was shocked….” What relevance does that have to my interpretation of the video? I base my interpretations on what I see, not on the interpretation of people I don’t know, and whose motivations I don’t know.

        1. I presume the spokescop (who may have been the chief) knows about what policy procedure is supposed to be in his jurisdiction, saw the video, and saw something he didn’t like, something contrary to police procedure.

          Now, before dunphy comes in to talk about cop-o-crats, yes, sometimes cop bosses will leave faithful cops hanging out to dry to appease public opinion. Maybe on further investigation that is what happened here.

          But the usual situation is for the cop-o-crats to err in favor of their people, backing them up or slapping them on the wrist.

          1. Just to be clear, though…walking out of school for this specific incident…is dumb. Either they’re missing out on an education, or if they’re not, they should transfer to a better school.

            And if they can’t transfer to a better school, now, *that* would be something to protest.

    2. Agreed. The video itself isn’t alarming.

      Interesting tidbit is that his occurred near the school but not on school grounds. It supposedly happened during routine police patrol.

      So school policies aren’t actually relevant to this case.

      1. Interesting tidbit is that his occurred near the school but not on school grounds.

        This is irritatingly hazy and that in-and-of itself is a problem.

        Reason says, “outside a high school”. The video in question, the building front their being ‘detained’ in front of has an ‘OPEN’ sign in it.

        The fact that the arrest was so tame indicates that there wasn’t exactly a crime in progress. It seems this or these officers waded into a situation that *may’ve* been socially disruptive and did a decent job of escalating things.

    3. hows an egregious ignorance of what students are like today

      As with nearly every other form of crime, school violence has been declining steadily since the early 90’s. The perception that school’s are facing a crime wave is an illusion created by media sensationalism.

      1. “The rate of serious violent victimization against students ages 12?18 was lower at school than away from school in most survey years between 1992 and 2008. Between 2009 and 2015, the rate at school was not measurably different from the rate away from school.”

        That doesn’t say declining, and it doesn’t say why the rates are now equivalent. It could be for many reasons. Please try to understand the studies you post.

      2. Crime is far different from discipline. I thought at times embracing the ‘those who can’t, teach’ part of my personality, but spend a little time in a high school today and hells no.

        There should be some middle ground where police can be used as a tool in school to maintain discipline without handcuffing above the elbow and/or body slamming youts.

    4. “…shackles…”

      Did you dare use the word “shackles” while referencing the ability to control the conduct of black students!? You racist POS. I bet you brought a watermelon to work on your 1st day on the job too.

      Sarc off

  2. He brandished his weapon within the first 90 days?

    Why did they bother with an investigation during his probationary period?

    1. Union contract, no doubt.

  3. I’d like to see this protest from the students

    “We want you poorly behaved asshole students to stop making the teachers need cops”

    I can dream.

    1. Poorly behaved asshole students don’t require cops. I used to work at schools specifically for violent kids one step away from jail or the hospital. We didn’t have a single cop.

      There would be many fewer poorly behaved asshole students if we treated students like humans instead of prisoners of education “for their own good.”

      1. “Poorly behaved asshole students don’t require cops. I used to work at schools specifically for violent kids one step away from jail or the hospital. We didn’t have a single cop.”

        So didi I. For a long long time. And you are specifically ignoring that those students are in those schools specifcally to avoid legal intervention. It is not in any way comparable to a normal classroom, where legislators and parents have made it so that yes, poorly behaved asshole students DO need cops.

        And, you totally missed the point. The students are adressing the symptom, not the cause.

        1. The point is that it’s not the poorly behaved students, but rather adults and the policies and procedures they’ve created which are the reason they feel like they need cops.

    2. This was after school off school grounds and the girls are A students who have never been in trouble.

  4. Well, someone didn’t read this guy’s resume before hiring him. It clearly said, under experience, “controlled employees, who engaged in sexual activity for payment, arranged clients for them, took part of their earnings in return.”

  5. Rascals.

  6. Black cop, black students. Hey, BLM!

    1. Nope, very few political points to be gained, so these black lives won’t really matter.

  7. Are we clear yet on whether this happned on school grounds or not? That is a kind of important detail.

    1. Also, school grounds or not, do we have some sort of infraction? Otherwise, there’s no distinction between regular patrol and random tackling.

    2. Unless schools now have “open” sings in the window, it was not on school property. The one girl points behind her and I says she was in the store and came out and asked the cop what he was doing.

  8. “A zero tolerance policy for police misconduct could get cops off the force before they’re involved in major controversies.”

    Sounds good. One could stand next to the police station on a hot day and enjoy the strong breeze generated by the zeros, I mean heroes, exiting through a revolving door.

  9. Orange is a town of 30,000 with a per capita income of $20,000. The salary for principals in the area starts at more than $100,000.

    Yeah, uh huh. Totally makes sense. Nothing like paying a babysitter’s manager a three figure salary.

    1. Remember, public schools are underfunded or something.

      1. I can say at least one thing confidently, and that is spending a shit ton more money has not had a noticeable impact on outcomes.

        Oops! I guess that whole ‘banking’ concept of learning just produces morons after all.

    2. Per capita? That means a family of 5 in that area would make the same amount as the principal.

  10. No one is the wrong color in this video, why do we care?

    1. They all kept their teeth and their consciousness. A lack of arrest also makes the story feel exceedingly local.

  11. Armed thug assaults 2 students at a high school and a faculty member who tried to stop the incident. Let’s start calling ti what it is.

  12. Things are done differently in Joisey!

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