Four veteran San Francisco Police Department officers are being investigated for having sent racist and homophobic text messages. The messages, exchanged during 2011 and 2012 the San Francisco Chronicle reports, surfaced in connection to a fifth officer, Sgt. Ian Furminger, 48, who was recently convicted in federal court on corruption charges. With more attention being paid to police misconduct and racial bias over the past year, that means in addition to their street interactions, officers’ activity online (i.e., Facebook, Wikipedia) and via text are garnering more scrutiny, too.
In a May 2012 text message exchange between Furminger and an unnamed officer:
…[he] asked whether he should be worried that the black husband of one of his then-wife’s friends had come over to his home.
The officer responded, "Get ur pocket gun. Keep it available in case the monkey returns to his roots. Its (sic) not against the law to put an animal down."
"Well said!" Furminger replied, according to the prosecutors’ court filing. "You may have to kill the half-breeds too,” the unnamed officer replied, adding: "Don’t worry. Their (sic) an abomination of nature anyway."
Messages with other officers include the phrases, "White power," and "All n– must f– hang."
The four officers, all of whom have at least 10 years on the force, have not been identified according to state law. While they have been reassigned to other duties, one public defender raises the prospect of re-investigating their cases from the past few years.
(h/t San Francisco Chronicle)