LAS VEGAS, Nev. (FOX5) – The anticipated body camera footage from Clark County School District police finally sheds light on the moments that led up to an officer seen slamming a Durango High School student to the ground last year.
There is a lot that happened, before, during and after that moment, and we are finally able to analyze it because footage was released Thursday night, nearly a year after the incident.
It was Feb. 9, 2023, an afternoon after classes ended at Durango High School.
Documents say several Clark County School District Police responded to the area after there were reports of a weapon. Officers came across a group of students walking around near the school.
Lt. Jason Elfberg stops one student.
The student says, “Call my mom.”
Then Lt. Elfberg addresses the crowd of students walking by.
“You’re blocking the sidewalk, start walking,” Lt. Elfberg yells.
The video showed that students seem to be complying and start slowly walking, including one student wearing a dark blue sweatshirt who had his phone out.
Lt. Elberg pulls the student away.
“I didn’t do anything, what the hell,” the second student said.
This second student is put in handcuffs immediately.
“I told you to start walking and now you want to be a part of it,” Lt. Elfberg said to the student.
A third student in a cream-colored sweatshirt walks by and starts recording.
“Don’t touch me, don’t touch me,” the third student said to Lt. Elfberg.
“What are you going to do?” Lt. Elberg responded.
Lt. Elfberg is seen slamming the third student to the ground and heard cursing at surrounding students who were nearby to tell them to start walking.
“I want him in cuffs,” Lt. Elfberg said.
“Stop moving, dude, stop moving,” Lt. Elfberg said to the third student on the ground.
He then tells students gathering nearby to “start walking, stop blocking the sidewalk.”
About five minutes later, the parents of the second student seen handcuffed show up.
“Is your child in handcuffs?,” the mom is heard asking Lt. Elfberg. “You got him in handcuffs for no reason.”
“He could go to jail if we make that decision,” Lt. Elfberg said to the mom.
Lt. Elfberg is heard telling the mom it is “for obstruction for blocking the sidewalk.”
However, video showed the second student’s back was turned as he was walking away from Lt. Elfberg.
Then Lt. Elfberg is heard addressing the student’s mom, saying, “That’s not how you are going to talk to me. She’s about to talk herself in handcuffs too.”
That student is eventually let go after his father joins the conversation, and then Lt. Elfberg goes to the student he shoved to the ground.
“He refused to leave, then he hand fighted me and I put him in handcuffs,” Lt. Elfberg is heard saying to another officer.
FOX5 looked closely at the video, and it showed the student’s head was still on the sidewalk with his right arm up.
“I’m not here to put my hands on kids. I don’t feel big and bad doing it. It doesn’t make me feel good,” Lt. Elfberg said to the student.
“If you guys want to play around with guns at each other that’s on you,” Lt. Elfberg said. “I don’t mind you recording. What did I ask you to do, walk away, I didn’t say stop recording.”
“I wasn’t coming at you, I was backing up on this sidewalk,” the student replied.
“My body cam has been on since I stopped, so if you want to argue, we can play this whole thing in court,” Lt. Elfberg said.
The student was eventually let go and cited.
After analyzing another officer’s bodycam footage, FOX5 heard officers asking about what would happen the next day in reference to what just happened.
“What do you want to do tomorrow? Because this thing is going to pop,” an officer asked.
“It is,” another officer said.
The very next day, cell phone video of Lt. Elfberg shoving the student to the ground went viral.
In the body cam video, you hear Lt. Felberg mention that his body cam was on many times. It is the same body cam footage that took almost a year to be released.
In total, three students were handcuffed, two were let go and the student who was shoved was cited but the ACLU said it did not go further.
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