July 19 (UPI) — Thirteen Philadelphia police officers will be fired for making racist and violent social media posts, Police Commissioner Richard Ross announced Thursday.
Ross said the 13 officers who were among 72 placed on administrative leave when the posts emerged in June, will be suspended for 30 days with intent to dismiss.
“That is disheartening to know that in 2019 we still have people with these views, that not only have these views but that would take to social media in a very public space to expound on such views in a way that is absolutely sickening,” Ross said.
He added that the 13 officers who were fired made posts that “advocated violence.”
None of the fired officers was identified by name and Ross said the official with the highest rank to be fired was a sergeant.
Four other officers will receive 30-day suspensions, three faced no discipline, and the rest were placed on desk duty and will receive punishment ranging from a reprimand to a five-day suspension.
In June, an online database known as the Plain View Project shared thousands of Facebook posts by about 328 active-duty law enforcement officers in Philadelphia and St. Louis, where 60 officers were removed from street duty.
Investigators examined the posts, some of which advocated violence or death against racial, ethnic and sexual minorities.