Officer Robert Lawson is accused of punching a 17-year-old black male student at Shortridge High School in Indianapolis, Indiana in August, and lying about the incident in his police report, which appears to contradict video of the incident.
Lawson has been charged with battery, perjury, obstruction, official misconduct, and false informing, notes WRTV.
Marion County prosecutor Terry Curry said that Lawson made false statements while reporting the incident and the false statements to support of the student’s arrest, reports IndyStar.
Lawson reportedly claimed in his police report that he feared the student was about to hit him, so he struck the student with an “open hand palm strike,” but video of the incident appears to show a closed fist.
Lawson also claimed that the teen’s “face was clinched in anger,” which is not a crime, and that the teen’s hands were balled into fists, which is also not a crime. Lawson claimed said the student “moved his right shoulder back and bladed his body.”
Lawson wrote in his police that his “open-handed” strike was successful and he placed the student into handcuffs, but the video appears to show that Lawson delivered a knee to the student’s stomach causing him to collapse on the ground before being handcuffed.