Georgetown officer seen in video tripping, pushing students as they rush field
GEORGETOWN, Texas - *UPDATE 7/17/15*
Georgetown P.D. says officer George Bermudez indefinitely suspended.
Original article below.
A Georgetown Police Officer is on paid administrative leave following his actions after a soccer game this weekend.
Video taken in the moments after the Vandegrift High School girls beat Wiley students start to rush the field. Despite warnings from the announcer some fans couldn't contain their excitement.
Officer George Bermudez and another officer were assigned to work crowd control. Video taken by a Vandegrift family and posted to YouTube shows Bermudez tripping a student who falls to the ground. As the student limps off the field the officer sticks his leg out trying to trip a female. She jumps over his leg and the officer grabs another student. Police say another video shows the officer shoving a fourth person.
"Naturally, if you've seen the video it's concerning," said Georgetown Police Captain Roland Waits. Bermudez has been with the department since 2005 and is currently assigned to the Community Resources Unit. His actions in the video have launched an internal investigation.
"He was actually our officer of the year last year and we'd characterize the behavior as uncharacteristic so it definitely raises our level of concern as to why the whole thing occurred," said Waits. Waits says the department has received calls from concerned people all over the country.
"I think he was trying to do his job and stop students but I think he could have used better judgment. Tripping someone isn't the right way to do it," said Rohan Gupta. Gupta, 16, posted the video online. He didn't realize what he caught on camera until after it happened.
"I don't think he should be fired just taught the proper way to handle the situation," said Gupta.
Gupta says his friend who fell is okay and some students in the hall made kicking actions toward him in a joking manner. Police are taking this investigation very seriously. Bermudez will be interviewed along with the other officer on the field.
Paid administrative leave is standard procedure in a situation like this.
The Georgetown Police Chief released a statement regarding the situation. To read it click here