Attorney defends security officer who hit student

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Updated: 6/24/2014 9:22 am

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — The attorney for a Northern California high school security officer seen on surveillance footage repeatedly slapping a student in a wheelchair says the student bears some responsibility.

Nabiel Ahmed, 23-year-old Marchell Mitchell's attorney, says the student had a history of discipline problems and spit on and antagonized his client. He says Mitchell may have acted in self-defense.

Ahmed spoke to reporters after a court hearing for Mitchell on Monday. Mitchell has pleaded not guilty to a charge of corporal injury to a child.

The May 19 attack at Oakland High School was caught on surveillance footage that shows Mitchell striking the student three times before pushing him to the ground. The student, who has cerebral palsy was handcuffed at the time.

A second video shows Mitchell kicking the student earlier.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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