Officer Captured on Camera Body Slamming 12-Year-Old Girl Is Fired

Officer Captured on Camera Body Slamming 12-Year-Old Girl Is Fired
Janissa Valdez

04/11/2016 AT 07:00 PM EDT

A police officer who was caught on camera body slamming a middle school student has been dismissed from the force, PEOPLE confirms.

"The [San Antonio Independent School] District has made the decision to terminate the employment of Officer Joshua Kehm, effective immediately," a press release obtained by PEOPLE states.

The video, which went viral after being shared online, shows 12-year-old Janissa Valdez being thrown against the floor by Kehm on March 29. It sparked an investigation led by the SAISD.

Kehm, who was originally placed on paid leave pending the investigation, is a police officer for the school district, not the city.

"As educators, it is our responsibility to provide a safe environment for all of our students,” said SAISD Superintendent Pedro Martinez in the press release.

“We understand that situations can sometimes escalate to the point of requiring a physical response; however, in this situation we believe that the extent of the response was absolutely unwarranted," he continued.

The incident took place at Rhodes Middle School on March 29 and was witnessed by a group of students who captured it on their cell phones.

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"The video is very disturbing, and we immediately began investigations, which are being conducted by both District police and District administration," Leslie Price of the SAISD said in the statement obtained by PEOPLE.

Speaking to local media, Janissa said the other students anticipated a fight between her and another student, however, Janissa just wanted to talk.

"I was going up to her to tell her let's go somewhere else so we could talk but that's when the cop thought I was going at her," she said.

Neither Valdez nor Kehm could be reached to comment.
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