A Boston police officer has been suspended for six months without pay for making a controversial video that featured the tagline, “This summer, black people have met their match.”
Officer Joseph DeAngelo Jr. recorded the video like a movie trailer. The footage featured Officer Dennis Leahy—who police say did not know he was part of the video. The trailer opened with the words, “In a fight between good and evil comes an unlikely pair,” showing the image of Leahy and a dog wearing a cast. The footage described the pair as an “inept cop” and “a dog with a limp” before the words, “Black people have met their match” ran over the image of a black woman, reported The Boston Globe.
Boston Police Commissioner William B. Evans said that he struggled with determining an appropriate discipline for DeAngelo, who has been with the department for four years. Evans said that DeAngelo told investigators that the video was meant to be a spoof on Leahy.
“It’s a disservice when some of our officers behave like this,” Evans said. “We’ve built a lot of trust and respect in the community, and we want that to continue.”
DeAngelo texted the video to three other police officers, a civilian employee and at least 6 others friends. He was placed on leave on June 15 after he admitted he’d shot the video.
“He caused some harm not only to his reputation, but the department’s reputation,” Evans said, adding that DeAngelo is sorry about his actions.
— Jan Ransom (@Jan_Ransom) June 29, 2017
DeAngelo asked for forgiveness in a statement: “To my family, my friends, my police department co-workers who I have embarrassed, and the people of the City of Boston, I offer a deep and sincere apology for the thoughtless, childish, insensitive, and offensive racial references contained in a video I made attempting to poke fun at a longtime friend and coworker,” DeAngelo wrote. “I was taught by my parents at a young age to respect people of all races, colors, and religions and was taught that all people, no matter what they look like or where they come from, should be treated the same…We all make mistakes in life, and some are bigger than others. I made a big one and ask for your forgiveness.”
(Article By Jeremiah Jones)