A sheriff's deputy fired for tossing a student across a South Carolina classroom after she refused to put away her cellphone should get his job back, his attorney says.

But Richland County Sheriff Leon Lott says he won't rehire Ben Fields.

Fields' lawyer says he should be rehired because a state prosecutor dropped the charges against the former deputy last month.

Attorney Scott Hayes' letter to media outlets Friday says the Spring Valley High School student hit Fields in the face so he was justified using some force to arrest her. But witness accounts of the incident vary quite a bit.

Lott said last year after seeing the video he wanted to throw up.

In an email, Lott's spokesman says Fields may still face a federal charge.