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Tuesday, February 23, 2021

San Antonio Police Department suspended three officers for offensive Facebook posts

Posted By on Tue, Feb 23, 2021 at 11:19 AM

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At least three San Antonio police officers were suspended late last year for Facebook posts that brought "reproach and discredit" to the department, according to a KSAT investigation.

The San Antonio Police Department released disciplinary documents to the TV station Monday. The officers were disciplined in November and December — months after they made the posts, according to the filings.

The officers made the posts amid nationwide protests over the killing of George Floyd by Minneapolis police, KSAT reports, citing police documents. In one case, the FBI notified San Antonio police about the officer’s Facebook activities.

The suspension documents released to the TV station provided the following details:
  • In December, SAPD slapped Officer George Olivarri with a five-day suspension after the FBI notified the department that he was one of three San Antonio cops who liked a Facebook post from last summer showing blood spattered across a car with a caption reading, "Didn't see any protesters." The other two officers weren't identified.
  • Detective Rudy Guzman was suspended for 10 days without pay in November over Facebook posts that included a video of a protestor standing in front of the military to which he added an "inappropriate and offensive comment" and a separate video showing the Venezuelan military training a water cannon on protestors. He also added an inappropriate comment to the second clip.
  • Officer Cody Haegelin received a 10-day suspension in December for a June 30 post in which he profanely defended President Donald Trump and blasted people who support the Black Lives Matter movement as "rejects/losers" and "ignorant f—ks."
News of the suspensions breaks as San Antonio and its police union negotiate for a new labor contract. Issues of officer discipline and accountability are expected to take center stage in those talks.

San Antonio voters will also decide in the May 1 municipal election whether to repeal a state statute that gives police unions the power to collectively bargain for a contract.

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