ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — A federal lawsuit alleging that a Rockford resource officer violated an Auburn High School freshman’s civil rights when he body slammed him in 2021 also accuses two assistant principals and a hall monitor of misconduct.
“Defendant (Assistant Principal Scott) Dimke failed to intervene to stop defendant (Bradley) Lauer from violating (Parris Moore’s) rights when he had a reasonable opportunity and the ability to do so,” Chicago attorney Al Hofeld Jr.’s lawsuit states.
Hofeld said Dimke was engaged with Moore in the moments before Lauer arrived on the scene and physically subdued the14-year-old.
The suit alleges that the situation should have ended there. Dimke, the plaintiffs claim, should have prevented Lauer from picking the boy up slamming him to the floor.
“As a result of this misconduct, plaintiff (Parris Moore) suffered the physical, mental, and psychological injuries,” the suit says.
According to the lawsuit, Moore, then 14, suffered a fractured skull and brain damage when Lauer body slammed him on Sept. 21, 2021, in a hallway inside Auburn High School.
Hofeld’s office released two videos of the incident Tuesday. The clips show Dimke following Moore, who was reportedly skipping class. Dimke can be seen attempting to stop Moore from getting past him as Moore refuses to stop.
Lauer comes into the shot and follows Dimke and Moore into an office. The clip then shows the officer take Moore to the ground in the hallway just outside the door.
“Dimke subjected or knowingly caused (Parris Moore) to be subjected to objectively unreasonable and excessive force and/or objectively unreasonable and excessive corporal punishment that violated his Constitutional rights under the Fourth and Fourteenth Amendments,” the lawsuit claims.
The video also shows two other Auburn staffers, hall monitor Jessica Badford, and Assistant Principal Amber Lee-Black, looking on as Dimke and Lauer engage with Moore.
Badford and Lee-Black are accused of violating the student’s civil rights by not stopping Dimke from “unreasonably escalating” the situation.
“Dimke and/or Lee-Black called for a ‘school liaison officer’ (SLO), defendant police officer Lauer, to come to the scene, even though PM’s refusal to retum to class was a disciplinary issue, not a crime,” the filing says.
Hofeld names Badford in the complaint because she allegedly “stood by and failed to take any action.”
According to Rockford Public Schools, Lauer is no longer a school resource officer.
Superintendent Ehren Jarrett released a statement Wednesday, saying the district will not comment on the case.
“We are unable to comment on confidential student matters or any pending or ongoing legal matters,” Jarrett said.
Rockford School Board President Jude Makulec and the city of Rockford are also named in the lawsuit.
The city also declined to provide details about the case.
However, Mayor Tom McNamara called Hofeld’s move to issue a press release before the lawsuit was filed a way to inflame the public with “partial information.”
“I support our officers and the longstanding relationship we have had with our public schools to provide a safe learning environment,” the mayor said.
Moore’s family spoke to reporters during a Wednesday press conference in Chicago.