04/09/2006

Prosecutor: Mich. officer caught on videotape assaulting student

The Associated Press

FLINT, Mich.- A police officer was charged with assault and fired after authorities said he was videotaped by a school bus camera striking a 15-year-old student.

A prosecutor said the videotape shows the uniformed school liaison officer at Central High School grabbing the teen's head and pushing the youth's head against a window.

"We viewed the video and the charges are the result," Genesee County Prosecutor David Leyton said Saturday.

Andrew L. Gauthier, 40, a 16-year veteran of the Flint Police Department, was charged with misdemeanor assault, officials said. If convicted, he faces up to 93 days in jail.

Leyton said Gauthier apparently thought the student was not supposed to be on the bus or at the school. The driver was present at the time, but no other students were on the bus.

"We're going to try to the case in the sanctity of the courtroom," said Gauthier's lawyer Norbert Leonard.

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