Pennsylvania cop fired for racist email: 'Black people can’t take care of their own without playing race card'
In the controversial email, Sgt. Jeff Annunziata defended his profession and lashed out at journalists for their coverage of the BLM protests
ERIE, PENNSYLVANIA: A veteran Erie Bureau of Police officer has been fired after he sent a "racist" email to reporters and the city's mayor criticizing violent protests in response to the death of George Floyd on Memorial Day last month.
At a press conference Thursday evening, Erie Mayor Joe Schember announced that 62-year-old Sgt. Jeff Annunziata had been relieved of his duties due to the email.
“Sgt. Jeff Annunziata sent an email to members of the media containing racist and derogatory statements,” Schember said at City Hall. “I condemn these statements. I am appalled and disgusted by the racial insensitivity of this email.”
In the controversial email, Annunziata said that black people seeking social justice couldn't "take care of their own or anyone else without playing the race card.” Meanwhile, he also defended his profession and lashed out at journalists for their news coverage.
Annunziata also said people “do not understand compliance" and asserted that most police officers try their best to avoid confrontation. He alleged that outfits such as Black Lives Matter and Antifa were being funded by the Clinton Foundation and billionaire George Soros, before noting that Erie officer Richard Burchick was shot and killed in 1991 by a black man.
“Why are the facts ignored about the killing in this country and how small, the minute numbers of Police officers that kill a black man in the line of duty?” Annunziata wrote. “There is not one police officer that I have met around the country that seeks out controversy instead of an agreement NOT ONE,” he added.
In the letter, Annunziata also spoke of the death of Floyd, an unarmed black man who died in Minneapolis police custody on May 25, and the nationwide outrage that the tragic incident had sparked.
“Why is the fact that the officer(s) in Minnesota are paying for their lack of judgment,” Annunziata wrote. “What gives the protesters the right to cause damage and disobey public order?”
Furthermore, he also questioned by reporters did "not report on the officers in this city that were injured trying to protect what people have built. You as reporters have a responsibility to report the whole story not the part you want to report for your own satisfaction and that of unnecessary movements.”
He then asked "where is the protest" for law enforcement officers being killed nationwide, and declared that prohibiting someone from displaying the Confederate flag is a violation of the First Amendment.
“Mr. mayor how many officers need to be hurt before you speak out," Annunziata asked Schember in the email, before alleging that the "deep state media, reporters are responsible and the radical liberal politicians are right behind them."
According to him, these groups only "show the problem but do not offer solutions, fair solutions we can all agree on.”
In conclusion, Annunziata said that officers across the country “always look for a peaceful resolution, but when we are confronted with dissension, weapons of all kinds and argument we have a job to do and hopefully with peaceful results. As we know this does not happen when a law is broken and the suspect or citizen does not understand what they have done, was done wrong and against the law.”