KANSAS CITY, Kan. — New details released by Wyandotte County officials today allege that an employee of the sheriff’s department used excessive force by repeatedly kicking a restrained juvenile in 2020.
Jorge Navarro was charged in December with one count of mistreating a confined person and one count of battery. Each crime is classified as a misdemeanor.
Court documents redacting the child’s name show testimony from three other workers who assisted with the situation at the Wyandotte County Juvenile Detention Center. Both of them told investigators that Navarro’s actions were excessive.
Navarro called for help October 11, 2020 when the juvenile inmate refused to go into his cell at the end of recreation time, according to court documents. Three workers – Philip Estigoy, Kyle Esparza and Elizabeth Lamb – responded during the fight.
Lamb and Estigoy later recalled that the juvenile was standing on furniture and throwing punches at Navarro, some hitting Navarro. Esparza said he arrived after the other two and did not see any punches.
The workers managed to wrestle the juvenile to the ground. While they had him restrained, all three workers said Navarro kicked him in the stomach or chest area. Two of the workers said there were two kicks.
All three workers reported telling Navarro to stop after the first kicks. Two workers pushed him back, but he came back and kicked him again.
The juvenile admitted to fighting Navarro and punching him. He also alleged Navarro punched him back and kicked him.
Lamb reported that “it’s not in their policy to kick an inmate,” and “the use of force by Navarro was excessive because it wasn’t needed,” according to court documents.
Estigoy also said he “doesn’t believe the kicks could be construed as self-defense.”
FOX4 is working to find out more information. We will continue to report on this story as court dates and decisions are made.