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04-14-08, 08:15 AM #1
Ohio Trooper suspended for being photographed in a handmade KKK costume while on duty
SANDUSKY, Ohio (AP) -- A highway patrolman who was photographed in a handmade Ku Klux Klan costume while on duty the day before the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday has been suspended without pay, authorities said.
A fellow trooper who transmitted the cell-phone photo of white-masked lawman has been demoted.
Craig Franklin, a 12-year veteran of the Ohio Highway Patrol, is pictured in the January 20 photo with a white cone on his head, white paper mask and a white cloth covering his shoulders, according to a highway patrol report.
Franklin is otherwise in trooper uniform. A handgun holster, a radio normally issued by the patrol and other police equipment can be seen in the photo, the report said.
Franklin and Trooper Eric Wlodarsky told an investigator that the picture was taken as a joke and was modeled on a television skit by comedian Dave Chappelle.
Highway patrol officials began an investigation after the patrol's Administrative Investigative Unit received an anonymous letter that included two photographs of Franklin in the outfit, an interoffice memo said.
Franklin, Wlodarsky, another trooper and a dispatcher discussed Martin Luther King Jr. Day at their post on the day the photo was taken, the report said. The national holiday was the following day.
None of the 13 troopers assigned to the Sandusky post are black.
"Obviously, we're extremely disappointed," said patrol spokesman Lt. Shawn Davis. "This kind of conduct cannot and will not be tolerated."
Following a March 24 hearing, Wlodarsky was demoted from sergeant to trooper, transferred to another post and must attend a diversity awareness class. Franklin was placed on a five-day unpaid suspension, and must take part in diversity awareness training, patrol documents showed.
A third trooper who received the picture via a text message was given a one-day suspension for failing to report the incident and forwarding the photo to a subordinate.
04-14-08, 08:25 AM #2
Can't do those things anymore - in Ohio or elsewhere!
Pretty soon kids won't be able to dress in costume for halloween because someone will take offense. When we were kids and living in the San Diego, CA area, my brother's costume was of a black clown. That costume could not be worn today.Be courteous to all, but intimate with few, and let those few be well tried before you give them your confidence.
[George Washington (1732 - 1799)]
04-14-08, 11:49 AM #3
Shades of Blazing Saddles?\\` ` ` ` < ` )___/\
`` ` ` ` (3--(____)
"...but to forget your duck, of course, means you're really screwed." - Gary Larson
04-15-08, 03:50 AM #4Temporarily Civilianized
- Join Date
- East Tennessee
- Rep Power
If a black trooper had done that, he would be lauded by the media as tackling racism....... an all that horse crap.There is no hunting like the hunting of man, and those who have hunted armed men long enough and liked it, never care for anything else thereafter.” -- Ernest Hemingway
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