Kenosha, a Wisconsin police officer, has resigned from his off-duty role in the local school district in a tactical investigation that involved a fight while holding a young girl hostage.
Officer Shawn Guetshaw, a part-time security officer for the Kenosha Unified School District, was set on fire March 4 after a viral video showed him kneeling on the neck of a 12-year-old girl at Lincoln Middle School while trying to stop a fight.
Guetshaw resigned from his role with the school district on March 15, Kenosha Unified School District chief communications officer Tania Ruder confirmed to ABC News.
Kenosha Police Lieutenant Joseph Nosalik confirmed to ABC News on Wednesday that Guetshow is still in the police department and is currently on desk duty in the investigation.
In his resignation letter, a copy of which was obtained by ABC News, Guetshaw described the “mental and emotional stress” of the incident as drawing public attention to his family, as well as the “lack of communication and support” he received from the district. .
The incident was the subject of a heated discussion at a school board meeting Tuesday, with some community members urging the district to suspend its contract with the Kenosha Police Department, others arguing that the school needed police officers to keep students safe.
The 12-year-old girl’s father, Gerald Perez, spoke out against the officer’s tactics at a news conference last week and called for criminal charges to be filed against him.
“She’s insulted. She’s traumatized. Every day I have to hear, ‘Dad, I don’t want to go to school,'” Perez said Wednesday.
“It broke me, because I wasn’t there to help him,” he added. “I feel helpless.”
Police told ABC News that both students involved in the fight have been charged with disorderly conduct.
Attorney Drew Divine, who represents the girl and her father, told a news conference Wednesday that the family plans to take legal action against police and the school soon.
Ruder told ABC News that the Kenosha Unified School District could not provide further details.
“Since it appears the incident could lead to a lawsuit, the district will not provide further details at this time,” he said.
ABC News has obtained a video of the incident taken by a student of the school and the officer is seen responding to a quarrel between two students during lunch in the cafeteria.
The 12-year-old girl, whose name was not released because she was a minor, pushed the officer and then pushed him to the ground amid screams from students gathered to watch.
The clip is 10 seconds long, and it’s not clear what happened before or after that
The Kenosha Police Department said in a statement Saturday, “We are continuing our investigation, focusing on the full extent of the incident.
Last week, the Kenosha Unified School District released a revised version of the school surveillance video of the incident.
In the video, Guetshow pushes the girl’s head to the ground and then sits on her knees for more than 20 seconds.
Perez expressed outrage at the police officer’s tactics and compared the image to that of George Floyd, a Minnesota police officer who died after kneeling on his neck for about nine minutes.
In a push for police reform following Floyd’s death, Wisconsin banned the use of police chokeholds in June 2021, except in situations where life-threatening situations or police officers had to defend themselves. Chokeholds include various police neck restraints.
Devini told ABC News earlier this month that the girl had “suffered head and neck injuries and is currently receiving medical treatment.”
He said that since Chokhold was banned in Wisconsin, “the incident should never have happened.”
“The family is hoping this is why it happened, so that it doesn’t happen to someone else’s child,” he added.