Police Officer Suspended For Referring To Black Lives Matter Protest As 'Target Practice'

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A police officer from Oregon has been placed on administrative leave over racist comments made on social media.

A police officer from Oregon has been placed on administrative leave over racist comments made on social media.

West Linn Police Department officer Tom Newberry made inappropriate, racist and threatening statements about an upcoming Black Lives Matter protest in the area. In one of the posts in question shared on his personal Facebook page, officer Newberry re-posted an article referring to multiple upcoming Black Lives Matter Protests as "A Day Of Rage." Newberry captioned the photo: "So Day of target practice?"

In a separate post found on his Facebook page, Newberry gave "instructions" on how to navigate through a crowd of Black Lives Matter protestors, indirectly suggesting running them over as an acceptable course of action. "When encountering such mobs remember, there are 3 pedals on your floor. Push the right one all the way down," the caption above a second article about BLM read. In a third post, Newberry shared a story from an anti-Liberal, openly racist website about white drivers running over BLM protestors who were allegedly blocking the road. 

According to KGW Portland, West Linn PD Lieutenant Mike Stradley described the second post as "incredibly embarrassing for a police officer." The West Linn PD has released the following statement to address officer Newberry's Facebook posts: "Today, July 14, 2016, at about 1230 pm we were made aware of certain Facebook posts made by one of our officers. An investigation into this conduct has been started to determine what if any policies of the West Linn Police Department and the City of West Linn may have been violated. This is an ongoing personnel issue and as such we cannot comment further at this time. The West Linn Police Department takes allegations of wrong doing seriously and will take appropriate action to hold our members accountable. We work hard to maintain the trust of those we serve."

Officer Newberry has been placed on administrative leave as the investigation into his comments continues.


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