McKinney Officer Resigns Amid Pool Party Investigation

Officer's resignation effectively ends internal investigation by McKinney police

Cpl. Eric Casebolt, the McKinney police officer placed on paid administrative leave after being recorded on video using profanity and  throwing a teen to the ground during a disruption at a community pool, has resigned, police officials say Tuesday.

McKinney officers were dispatched to the Craig Ranch North Community Pool early Friday night after a fight and general disturbance were reported. The disturbance included several teens who did not have permission to be at the pool and who refused to leave, officials said.

Smartphone video of the police response shows Casebolt throwing a black 15-year-old girl, identified as Dajerria Becton, face down onto the ground and pinning her with his knees as she cried out for her mother.

Casebolt also cursed at the crowd of teens and pointed his gun at two others.

"As the chief of police, I want to say to our community that the actions of Casebolt, as seen on the video, of the disturbance at the community pool, are indefensible," said Chief Greg Conley, during a news conference Tuesday afternoon. "Our policies, our training, our practice, do not support these actions. He came into the call out of control, and as the video shows, was out of control during the incident."

As Casebolt and two officers first responded to the scene, teens were said to be running from the area as officers tried to gain control of the situation.

"Our citizens called us to a fight in progress and a general disturbance at the community pool. We responded. I do not condone the actions of those individuals who violated the rules of the community, showed disrespect to the security person on scene and to the officers who responded," Conley said. "However, we as a department are held to a high standard ... as we do our jobs. I support the fine men and women of the McKinney Police Department, who day in and day out, do an outstanding job on behalf of all of our citizens."

Nine additional officers were called to the scene and Conley said the disruption was eventually brought under control.

"I have 12 officers on the scene and 11 of them performed according to their training. They did an excellent job," Conley said.

Video showing the incident sparked national scrutiny of Casebolt's actions; meanwhile, the officer was placed on administrative leave while the police department investigated. 

Casebolt resigned Tuesday, without issuing a statement or apology, Conley said.  His resignation effectively ends the investigation by the McKinney Police Department's Internal Affairs Division.

Officer "Out of Control" as He Arrived at the Pool

"I was wondering what was going through his head. Why would he even come to the scene and act in the manner in which he acted?" said Dana Bakari, whose daughter, Jahda, was at the party on Friday night.

The family lives in the Craig Ranch North neighborhood.

"We may never know, but at the same time, too, I am relieved that he's no longer at the police force here in McKinney," Bakari said.

On Monday night, the Craig Ranch North Homeowners' Association sent an email to its members, saying, in part, "This is a peaceful, increasingly-diverse neighborhood that is growing and thriving because of our difference in background, race, reasons for moving here, and in many other ways."

"I just hope it doesn't shed a negative light here," Bakari said.

Cornell William Brooks, president and CEO of the NAACP, released a statement Tuesday following Casebolt's resignation.

"To protect any community, law enforcement officials must respect that community. The resignation of Cpl. Eric Casebolt is a good first step, but hardly the last," Brooks said.

Brooks went on to say the NAACP, "will continue working with community members and law enforcement to ensure that no one, especially the young people of McKinney, are ever again the victims of excessive force, racial profiling and police brutality."

One person, 18-year-old Adrian Martin, was arrested for evading arrest/detention and interference with public duties. Police said Tuesday that those charges were dropped. Martin, on Tuesday, said he wasn't planning on suing following the incident.

The teen in the bikini taken to the ground by Casebolt was eventually released without being cited.

McKinney police said they have reached out to the teens involved and asked if they wanted to press charges. So far only one person has responded.

NBC 5's Amanda Guerra, Ray Villeda, Don Peritz, Kevin Young and Brian Roth contributed to this report.

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