Juvenile detention officer accused of slamming detainee's head into wall

A developing story involving a juvenile detention officer, who has been arrested and is accused of assaulting an inmate at the Maricopa County Juvenile Detention Center.

That officer allegedly pushed the juvenile detainee into a wall head first and caused serious injuries.

The boy's mother said she wanted to prosecute the alleged incident that happened January 21st in a hallway at the center. The incident was caught on tape and the officer was arrested Monday.

41-year-old officer Ross Martin found himself in court Tuesday facing a judge.

"Allright sir, you are here on one count of a charge of aggravated assault on a minor, a class 6 felony," said a judge.

Investigators say video from the facility on Durango and 35th Avenue shows the 5'11", 235 pound officer pushing a 5'0" 95 pound juvenile detainee into the wall.

The boy told investigators he got into an argument with another detainee, then questioned Officer Martin's authority to move him to another unit. He says that's when officer Martin said "I'm making you walk."

Police say the video shows the boy stood in protest but eventually started walking. Investigators say the video shows the officer pushing the boy into the wall and pinning him there. Then he pulled him onto the floor and was laying on top of him when other staff came to help.

The boy told investigators that he remembers the officer grabbing his arm, but nothing after that. He says he woke up in the housing unit with a headache and then threw up. He was later diagnosed as having a concussion.

Investigators say a supervisor who saw the surveillance video called the officer's actions "excessive," saying he did not use approved defensive tactics.

When the officer was arrested, police say a handwritten note was in his pocket which alluded that the victim inflicted the head injuries on himself. Police did not expand on who wrote the note or where it came from.

Officer Martin also told investigators that the boy's shoulder hit the wall first, not his head. He was released on his own recognizance and his next court date is on February 17th.
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