COVINGTON, KY - The Kenton County Sheriff has pulled the school resource officers from Covington schools.
Sheriff Chuck Korzenborn cited an agreement with the school district reached with the Department of Justice in January as the reason.
"I couldn't work with it," Korzenborn told our news partners at The Cincinnati Enquirer. "It would mean we could not do things my men are sworn to do."
The sheriff's department had contracted annually with Covington schools for the past several years to provide deputies during the school day.
But the school resource officers came under scrutiny 2014 after an incident that drew national attention. A video surfaced showing an 8-year-old boy, a Latonia Elementary student identified only as S.R., with his back to the camera, kicking and crying, his small arms bound in handcuffs around his biceps.
A federal lawsuit ensued against the Kenton County Sheriff's Department and School Resource Officer and Deputy Kevin Sumner.
The Department of Justice investigated the school's restraint policies and reached an agreement with the school system on a new set of rules.
Under the new rules, officers can only intervene in a serious situation that "constitutes an imminent and substantial threat to physical safety or a serious crime."
The sheriff's office attorneys had tried to work with the school to change the wording, Korzenborn said. Korzenborn and Col. Pat Morgan, chief deputy of the Kenton County Sheriff's Department, referred the question of what was wrong with the wording to their attorney, Matt Smith. Smith told The Enquirer he would send a statement, which wasn't immediately available.
Korzenborn felt the school's agreement with the DOJ wasn't constitutional and pulled the deputies from the schools on the advice of attorneys.
"We're law enforcement officers," Korzenborn said. "If we see or have suspicions of something going down, we have to do something about it."
It's not known whether the school system would contract with another agency to provide officers.
Schools are back in session in Covington on Aug. 23.
Covington Schools Superintendent Alvin Garrison, school board chairwoman Julie Geisen Scheper and other officials weren't immediately available for comment Friday afternoon.