A racist police officer is back on the streets, even though he violated his department’s policy by using a racial slur toward a group of African-Americans while on duty.
The Civil Service Commission that oversees the Aurora Police Department in Colorado reversed the termination of Lieutenant Chuck DeShazer, KUSA-TV reported on July 10.
This all stems from a police involved shooting in June 2017. A Denver officer shot a suspect who fled into nearby Aurora, which prompted DeShazer and a sergeant in the Aurora Police Department to pursue the man.
DeShazer and the sergeant encountered “unruly” neighbors who were angry about the shooting. “We got the Alabama porch monkeys all contained,” DeShazer commented moments later. His words were recorded on the sergeant’s body camera.
“I was appalled. I was hurt. And the reason I was hurt was because that comment is not indicative of the men and women of this police department,” said Aurora Police Chief Nick Metz, who oversaw an investigation into the incident and decided to fire the lieutenant.
It’s no surprise that the commission reinstated DeShazer. Over the past decade, successful appeals of terminations have forced police departments nationwide to rehire scores of officers who were fired for misconduct, according to the Washington Post.
A review of records in 37 of the nation’s largest police forces found that departments rehired 451 officers out of at least 1,881 fired for misconduct from 2006 to 2016. The offenses of those reinstated included an officer convicted of sexual abuse and another who drove a suspected gunman from the crime scene.
In many of those cases, the fired officers had the support of sympathetic arbitrators and police unions, the newspaper said.
The commission in the Aurora case demoted DeShazer to sergeant while acknowledging that he had three other offenses on his record, including making a sexually offensive comment.