This past Friday was supposed to be the rumored “Day of Rage”. This rumor is alleged to have been started from an account claiming to have ties to the hacker group Anonymous. It was to have called for a nationwide day of protest against police violence against black civilians. As a result, a number of online publications wrote articles about it. With articles these days, you get those wonderful buttons that allow you to share articles on social media and even add your own comments or captions. However, depending on what you do for a living, you should mind those editorial comments.
This is where we begin the story of Officer Tom Newberry. Newberry is currently with West Linn, Oregon Police Department. Thanks to his recent Facebook activity, he is getting an unexpected break from his duties.
Last week, Newberry made a series of posts that seemed to call for violence against Black Lives Matter protesters. Here are three of the most egregious.
In the first, he asks the “Day of Rage” could be considered a day of “target practice”.
In subsequent posts, he seemingly advocates that people run over protesters with their vehicles.
According to the department, they were made aware of the posts last Thursday afternoon (7/14) and, by that evening, Tom Newberry was placed on leave. The department is looking into the matter to determine if the officer violated its policies. Nonetheless, a spokesperson for the department, Lt. Mike Stradley, said he considered the posts “embarrassing to me personally.”
The department issued the following statement:
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.