Police Chief Orlando Rolon confirmed the dismissal of Officer Dennis Turner for arresting Kaia Rolle, 6, and an 8-year-old in separate incidents Thursday at the Lucious & Emma Nixon Academy Charter School, Fox 35 Orlando reported.
"As a grandparent of three children less than 11 years old this is very concerning to me,” Rolon said in a statement Sunday.
Turner violated policy by arresting the two students without obtaining the approval of a watch commander, Colon said.
The 8-year-old was hauled off to the Juvenile Assessment Center and processed through the system, he said.
An officer assigned to transport Kaia to the juvenile facility returned her to the school before being processed. The officer turned around after verifying approval for the arrest had not been obtained, the chief said.
Kaia’s “crime” was throwing a tantrum. She was charged with kicking a staffer. Her grandmother, Meralyn Kirkland, blamed the tantrum on her granddaughter’s sleep apnea.
"How do you do that to a 6-year-old child and because she kicked somebody?" she told WKMG-TV. "A literal mug shot of a 6-year-old girl."
She continued, "No 6-year-old child should be able to tell somebody that they had handcuffs on them and they were riding in the back of a police car and taken to a juvenile center to be fingerprinted, mug shot."
Florida state lawmaker Carlos Guillermo Smith criticized Orlando police for Kaia's arrest in a tweet Sunday, Fox 35 reported.
"Arrested. Handcuffed. Fingerprinted. Mugshot...For a 6-year-old who had a tantrum? I'm completely speechless at the complete and total lack of judgment shown by this @OrlandoPolice officer. How is it acceptable to traumatize any child in this way?"