Lucca Christopher Krickovich deputy Florida

Florida Deputy, Christopher Krickovich, Placed on Leave After #JusticeForLucca Video Goes Viral

Christopher Krickovich, a Florida deputy, was placed on leave after a video of him and fellow deputies slamming a 15-year-old boy’s head into the pavement during a trespassing arrest went viral this weekend. The video has sparked outrage from celebrities like LeBron James and Steve Kerr. One officer involved claims the teen was being “aggressive” and that punching him in the head was nothing more than a “distractionary technique.”

Footage of the assault was shared on social media with the hashtag #JusticeForLucca. The teen, who has been referred to both as “Lucca” and “Delucca” online didn’t appear to be breaking any laws outside of a McDonald’s in Tamarac, Fla., while Broward County Sheriff’s deputies handcuffed another teen on the ground.

The deputy turned around and confronted Lucca, then pepper sprayed him in the face after he picked up a cell phone. As Lucca turned and tried to walk away, Krickovich grabbed the child by the shoulders and threw him to the ground.

More than one angle of the assault was captured on video. Another perspective showed another officer jumping on Lucca after he’d been pushed to the ground. The deputy repeatedly slammed the boy’s head into the concrete, before punching him in the head. The teen did not resist in either video, but at one point he did place his arm beneath his face to prevent further injury to his head.

Broward County Mayor Mark Bogan reacted to the violent video by saying that Christopher Krickovich’s behavior was “outrageous & unacceptable,” adding: “The officer who jumped the student, punched & banged his head should be fired.” Although the mayor said he had a problem with the assault, there was no reason to pepper spray the young man either.

“So wrong!! Hurts me to my soul!!” James wrote on Twitter. “To think that could be my sons. Scary times man.”

“What the hell is wrong with our country?” Kerr wrote. “This is insane yet routine. So demoralizing.”

“It’s interesting how everyone in Parkland and Broward was calling out local law enforcement a couple of months ago,” wrote David Hogg, a survivor of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in nearby Parkland. “But now the black and brown youth are being brutally assaulted in school by the same police 15 min away. COMPLETE silence…”

Sheriff Gregory Tony promised a “thorough investigation” of the matter in a video press release. He also announced that one of the officers involved, Christopher Krickovich, would be placed on administrative leave for use of force.

Krickovich, in the arrest warrant, wrote about how students fight in the plaza on a normal basis. He even referenced a fight that had taken place a day prior, which resulted in property damage, but was unrelated to this incident. He claimed he and other officers saw a teen trespassing who had been involved in the previous day’s activity. The student was placed in custody “without incident”— but when that teen’s cell phone fell during the arrest, Lucca allegedly bent down to pick it up.

Krickovich claimed Sgt. Greg LaCerra told Lucca to stay back. He then said the teen “took an aggressive stance” towards the officer, and “bladed his body and began clenching his fists.” After an officer pepper sprayed the teen and forced him to the ground, Krickovich said he jumped on the boy and “pushed down […] to ensure my full weight was on his person so he could not attempt to take flight or fight us.”

“Again, the three of us were outnumbered by the large group of students who were yelling, threatening us, and surrounding us,” Krickovich wrote. “I had to act quickly, fearing I would get struck or having a student potentially grab weapons off my belt or vest.”

During a meeting with the Broward County Black Elected Officials group on Saturday, Sheriff Tony attempted to calm the outrage.

“That’s the most electrifying and dangerous situation for a law enforcement administrator to handle,” Tony said. “Any time a white deputy is involved in contact with using force on a Black youth, this thing blows up.”

He concluded that he can’t just “fire the officers involved.”

“There’s been a large cry of just go out and fire them. Just get rid of them,” he said. “You all know it doesn’t work like that. It’s going to be done the right way.”

Training officers to not attack children, who aren’t being aggressive, should also be done the right way. Broward County Sheriff’s Department does not have a good reputation when it comes to police brutality cases. Maybe it’s time to hold this agency accountable instead of making excuses.

Latest News

women in politics

Women Remain Vastly Underrepresented in Local Government, Despite Conventional Wisdom Suggesting Otherwise

Vice President Kamala Harris and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi sat behind President Biden during his first speech to a joint session of Congress on April 28 — representing the first time two women held such important and high-ranking political offices. Even after such a historic moment, the reality…

voter restriction

Florida Follows Georgia’s Lead, Approves Racist Anti-Voter Restrictions Aimed Primarily at Democrats and People of Color

Not content with letting Georgia be the only state in the South demonized for its bigoted and racist attacks on voter rights, Florida has jumped into the fray in issuing its own series of new and highly controversial “Jim Crow-esque” anti-voting restrictions aimed specifically at disenfranchising Democrats and voters of…

Kentucky Derby

Inspired by Protests Over Breonna Taylor’s Death, Humana and Kentucky Derby Festival Launch Diversity and Inclusion Initiative in Louisville

Ahead of the 147th Kentucky Derby on Saturday, May 1, Kentucky Derby officials and Humana (No. 25 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2020) have announced a new equity initiative meant to make the race more accessible and welcoming to everyone, regardless of race, gender, age…

crimes against human ity

‘Crime Against Humanity’; Global Report Says the US Should Be Prosecuted in International Criminal Court for Ongoing Police Murders of Black Americans

In what has been described as a “devastating” report, human rights experts and lawyers have investigated and released a 188-page analysis of the ongoing police brutality and killing of Black Americans in the U.S. Their verdict: the country is guilty of “crimes against humanity” and should be prosecuted for its…

Tokyo, Olympics

Tokyo Olympics to Encourage Significant Increase in Gender Equality Among Event’s Corporate Sponsors

Besides simply being a showcase for some of the most talented and athletic men and women on the planet, the organizers of the Tokyo Olympics are hoping their event this summer can also help promote significant change in corporate culture, both in Japan and around the globe. Bloomberg’s Ayai Tomisawa…

AbbVie Joins Over 400 Leading US Employers in the Human Rights Campaign’s ‘Business Coalition for the Equality Act’

Originally published on LinkedIn. AbbVie ranked No. 19 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2020.   AbbVie has joined a group of over 400 corporations and leading U.S. employers to support the Human Rights Campaign’s “Business Coalition for the Equality Act,” an initiative advocating for federal…

Accenture and Goodwill Develop Virtual Experience To Help People Impacted by the Criminal Justice System Enter the Workforce

Originally published at prnewswire.com. Accenture is ranked No. 5 on The DiversityInc Top 50 Companies for Diversity list in 2020.   Goodwill Industries International has teamed with Accenture to develop an innovative virtual experience called Project Overcome. The experience is designed for people impacted by the criminal justice system who want to…