Local News

Durham police to discuss officers' Facebook comments

Posted December 12, 2008 5:45 a.m. EST
Updated December 12, 2008 3:25 p.m. EST

— Durham police commanders said they would release the findings Friday of an internal investigation into whether officers posted offensive comments on the Internet after the presidential election.

An unknown number of officers were accused of posting derogatory comments on their personal Facebook pages shortly after President-elect Barack Obama’s win Nov. 4.

Police leaders were expected to release a copy of the Facebook pages so the public can decide if there were inappropriate postings.

The Durham chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People has demanded more information, charging that public trust in the department has been hurt.

“Everybody is trying to say there is an inference, but we don’t know what that inference is,” Durham NAACP president Fred Foster said.

Police have not elaborated on what words might have been used in the postings or stated the race of the officers.

Foster said there is distrust among some people who feel the officers might not be able to objectively serve the community.

“There is an area of trust that has been violated or at least been damaged,” he said.

Foster said that an officer or officers posted inappropriate comments, he wants the police department take action against them.

A statement released by the police department reads: "Ethnic, racist or sexist comments are not tolerated in the Durham Police Department. The Department has a code of conduct and regulations that put officers on notice that high standards of conduct are required and expected both on and off duty."

The statement went on to say that if the allegations are sustained, the department would take appropriate action.