US: 72 Philadelphia Police Officers On Administrative Duty Over Alleged Racist And Violent Social Media Posts, Commissioner Says - PressFrom - US
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US72 Philadelphia Police Officers On Administrative Duty Over Alleged Racist And Violent Social Media Posts, Commissioner Says

01:35  20 june  2019
01:35  20 june  2019 Source:   msn.com

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Police officers saying bigoted and racist things online has been an issue since the beginning of social media . The behavior was especially scrutinized after the Black Lives Matter movement blasted into the national conversation — and that scrutiny has continued even after that movement began

The source said 50 Philadelphia police officers were taken off the street amid the investigation. A source confirmed with NBC10 that 50 Philly police officers were placed on desk duty amid an investigation of racist Facebook posts .

72 Philadelphia Police Officers On Administrative Duty Over Alleged Racist And Violent Social Media Posts, Commissioner Says© Provided by CBS Local, a division of CBS Radio Inc

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Philadelphia Police Commissioner Richard Ross announced Wednesday that 72 officers are on administrative duty, and that some of them might be terminated, for alleged racist and violent social media posts. Hundreds of Philadelphia police officers have been accused of these type of social media posts.

Ross spoke after meeting with organizers of the Rally for Justice protest on Wednesday afternoon.

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“We’ve talked about from the outset how disturbing, how disappointing and upsetting these posts are and how they will undeniably impact police-community relations and we’re not naïve to that fact and nor are we dismissive of it,” Ross said.

With the officers being placed on administrative duty, they no longer will interact with the public and have turned in their department side arm.

The protest organizers want all of the nearly 330 officers accused of racist and violent posts on social media assigned to desk duty, pending an investigation.

“We believe that they are committed to working with the community and we are committed to keeping the pressure on so that they continue to work with the community around not only what happened with these Facebook posts, but is what is happening with the police contract and the Police Advisory Commission and other structural things that would keep this from happening again,” organizer Solomon Jones said.

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The police commissioner said one of the challenges in investigating the alleged bias is that the officers were making the Facebook posts as private Chuck Wexler, executive director of the Police Executive Research Forum based in Washington, said managing officers ’ personal social - media

Gardner said the alleged racially charged posts were revealed by the Plain View Project, a database of public Facebook posts and comments made by current and former police officers in the United States. She called the social media statements “shocking” and “beneath the dignity of someone who

The department’s Internal Affairs unit is working with an outside law firm to determine if these posts are protected under the First Amendment.

“Internal Affairs has identified and prioritized the posts clearly advocating violence or death against any protected class such as ethnicity, national origin, sex, religion and race. These officers have been removed from the street that fall under these categories,” Ross said.

Ross added that if the speech the officers used in the posts was determined to be protected, no further action would be taken.

“An example would be an opinion on a matter of public concern that may be unpopular but that does not include threats of violence or pejorative language against any protected class. If the speech is not protected by the First Amendment, the case will proceed with appropriate discipline,” Ross said.

Plain View Project, a watchdog group, discovered the controversial posts of police officers who work in Philadelphia and in other cities around the country.

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READ: Racist , violent posts by police : St. Louis police among those investigating. “ Police integrity is at the core of the community’s confidence in the criminal justice system,” said Gardner. After careful examination of the underlying bias contained in those social media posts , we have concluded

Fraternal Order of Police President John McNesby previously said in a statement, “The FOP will continue to represent members in this overly-broad social-media investigation. We’ve been informed that those officers under investigation will be interviewed within days of being notified and will be returned to duty shortly thereafter. The FOP and our members utilize social media on a regular basis to bring people together and support one another. It is sad that the investigators with the ‘social justice’ group chose to ignore all the good work done regularly by our officers. During this difficult climate in which police officers are constantly under attack, the FOP will continue to support you.”

CBS3’s Greg Argos contributed to this report.

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