MBTA cop in hot water over Facebook post

Credit: REUTERS/Regis Duvignau
Credit: REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

The MBTA removed a Transit Police officer from his position as a police academy drill instructor after he posted a derogatory status update on his personal Facebook page.

Officer Joe Rossi reportedly posted on his social media profile: “Farther’s [sic] Day, the most confusing day in Roxbury,” referencing one of the city’s predominantly black neighborhoods.

Boston NAACP President Michael Curry told WCVB the remark was “a sad commentary on what this gentleman thinks is going on in communities of color.”

According to the Transit Police Department’s social media policy, employees must “be mindful of the negative impact of inappropriate or unauthorized postings upon the MBTA Transit Police Department and its relationship with the public.”

The policy  prohibits officers from posting comments that are racist or sexist, or insult groups on the basis on national origin.

Those types of comments “tend to undermine the public trust and confidence required by you,” the policy says.

Officers also can’t post anything that “reflects a lack of good moral character” or “would bring unfavorable criticism or embarrassment” upon the department.

The transit agency said that in addition to being disciplined, Rossi “will be re-trained on the importance of treating people and communities with dignity and respect.”

The T also said they were looking into whether any other officers commented on the post, or “liked” it.

Follow Morgan Rousseau on Twitter: @MetroMorgan
Follow Metro Boston on Twitter: @MetroBOS



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