ST. LOUIS – Two St. Louis city police officers have been terminated. Both were fired for social media posts uncovered over the summer by the controversial Philadelphia-based group called ‘The Plain View Project’, reported the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
The group subjectively determined posts made by more than 20 active St. Louis officers were considered racist, prejudiced, or violent.
Sgt. Ronald Hasty and Detective Thomas Mabrey were fired for “conduct unbecoming of an officer” because of content posted to Facebook, attorney Brian Millikan said.
St. Louis police confirmed Monday that Hasty, a 32-year veteran, and Mabrey, a 30-year veteran, were no longer with the department as of Nov. 27. Spokeswoman Michelle Woodling declined to comment further, saying their departure was a personnel matter.
Jacob Long, a spokesman for Mayor Lyda Krewson’s office, also declined comment.
Neither Hasty nor Mabrey had any complaints of discrimination against them in their employment records, Millikan said. The posts were made as private citizens and did not violate any city or police policy, he declared.
“It’s important to note that these two officers had long careers,” he said. “We believe discipline should be based on their actual record and not something they shared on Facebook as private citizens.”
After the group first released the report in June, Hasty denied the posts were racist.
“Well, that’s what they’re claiming, but last I checked I had First Amendment rights,” Hasty said in an interview with the Post-Dispatch. “I’m not a racist. You can talk to any of my friends.”
Hasty became an officer in 1987, police said. Mabrey began his career with the department in 1989.
Hasty was named the St. Louis Police Department’s Officer of the Year in 2006.
Yesterday, the attorney for both Hasty and Mabrey told Fox 2 that they are appealing the decision.
Since the Plain View Project report first came out, St. Louis city police have undergone “sensitivity training.”