Last week, the Lone Pine School Superintendent called Sheriffs deputies to help handle a 17-year-old boy who was apparently under the influence of something. Later hospital tests revealed he was under the influence of alcohol and drugs, according to Sheriff Bill Lutze. The boys mother has alleged unprofessional behavior by local and state law enforcement.
Sheriff Lutze said that the Superintendent, Larry Todd, tried to move the boy out of a classroom, but the student refused and was belligerent. Lutze said one of his officers responded to the school and told the boy to get up. The Sheriff said the teenager ranted and raved and grabbed a phone as if to hit the officer.
The Sheriff said the officer tried to restrain the boy who was kicking and flailing. The officer had to wrestle the boy to the floor. A Highway Patrol officer arrived on scene to help. Sheriff Lutze said the boy resisted arrest but officers finally managed to take him into custody. The Sheriff said that as per normal protocol for juvenile arrests, officers took the teen to the hospital. Tests revealed he was under the influence of alcohol and drugs which may have contributed to his aggressive behavior, according to the Sheriff. The boy was medically cleared, with no injuries, and released to the custody of Juvenile Hall.
The somewhat violent scene in the classroom led some to complain about the handling of the boy, including the boys mother. Renee Kennedy-Rodriguez issued a press release alleging that Sheriffs Sergeant Andrew Marsh brutally beat my son Zachary Maddox, a disabled and asthmatic 17-year-old boy/student on Lone Pine High School property in the presence of two California Highway Patrol officers, his teacher Ms. Mallory and Lone Pine School Superintendent Larry Todd.
The mother alleges her sons civil rights were violated. She further alleges that the trauma of the incident induced a severe attack resulting in immediate emergency medical care to sustain his life at Southern Inyo Hospital.
Sheriff Lutze maintains that his officer only used force necessary to affect arrest and used normal protocol for juveniles prior to booking under the influence cases. He firmly stated that the boy was checked and released to Juvenile Hall. Lutze said, Everything the officer did was in line. Lutze said the officer could have used a tazer or baton but did not resort to those means to subdue the out of control teenager. He said officers only responded because school officials could not handle the boy.
Sources said that Sheriffs officers had to respond to Juvenile Hall last week because the boys mother showed up and created a disturbance.