Attorney of Florida teen knocked to ground by Boynton Beach officer wants independent investigation

Family of boy fears fair investigation

BOYNTON BEACH, Fla. -- - The family of a 13-year-old Boynton Beach boy who was knocked to the ground by a police officer is calling for the Boynton Beach Police Department to step aside from the investigation and bring in an independent agency to look into the incident.

A video surfaced on Tuesday that showed what appeared to be a Boynton Beach police officer swiping the legs out from underneath Kevens Jeanbaptist, 13, while his hands were cuffed behind his back.

The officer involved has since been placed on administrative duty.

On Thursday, the family of the boy hired Boynton Beach attorney Maguene Cadet.

Cadet said Jeanbaptist is still afraid and worried about what happened. She said from what she knows and has seen, her client did nothing wrong and that the actions by the officer are inexcusable.

The family of the boy and the Cadet both said right now their goal is to make sure the investigation is done fairly and without politics.

“It makes more sense to have a neutral party investigate the matter as opposed to Boynton Beach doing their own investigation. We want to make sure everything is done right in this case,” said Cadet.

Palm Beach County Sheriff’s Office spokesperson Teri Barbera said they have not been contacted about the case. She said the request would have to be made by Boynton Beach Police, not the family.

Boynton Beach Police spokesperson Stephanie Slater released the following statement in regards to the request of handing over the investigation:

"The details and methodology of this investigation are going to remain confidential until its conclusion. Our priority now is to preserve the integrity of the investigation and get to the truth.  All of the nuances of what we do will be revealed at the conclusion of our investigation," wrote Slater.

The family of the boy involved said it is waiting to gather the proper information and materials before it files a formal complaint about the incident.