HPD investigating officers for racist social media post

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- The Houston Police Department is investigating whether current police officers were involved with a former police officer's racist social media post. It is the latest post by public servants to be challenged.

On Monday, Houston rapper and activist Bun B posted what he said were screenshots of a former HPD officer's post which contained a racist photo against Blacks. ABC 13 did not air the photo due to the offensive nature. HPD is investigating whether other officers are involved.

Chief Art Acevedo said the officer had already left the department when it was posted.

"We are still going to investigate who else was on there and make sure there are no other employees," said Acevedo. "I want the community to be our eyes and ears."

The racist content is one of several social media posts recently that have been publicly challenged. Some have even affected jobs.

Trial Bureau Chief Kaylynn Williford resigned from the Harris County District Attorney's Office Monday after she shared a post that appeared to compare protesters to Nazis.

SEE RELATED STORY: Top Harris Co. prosecutor resigns after post appearing to compare protesters to Nazis, district attorney says

Harris County Sheriff's Office Sergeant T. Kributr was fired on Friday, HCSO said, for violating social media and employee conduct policies after his post about "Black criminals."

Attorney Lucy Chukwurah said what someone writes can affect their job and when you hold one that is supposed to treat everyone equally, the bar is higher.

"You cannot call that free speech because your free speech ends where my rights begin," said Chukwurah. "And when you're a police officer, I can question your impartiality."

Most employees have employee handbooks that cover social media, workplace policies, and conduct codes, among other things. Employers also consider perception, reputation and the community they serve.

"For the most part, you're free to say whatever you want, but the employer is free to terminate you for whatever you say," said Dwain Capodice, also an attorney. "If you're not comfortable saying it in a conference room and not comfortable saying it to your boss, in the presence of your boss, then refrain from posting it on social media," said Capodice.

Both attorneys gave good advice.

"If you need your job and you need to think about what your employer thinks about it, I just wouldn't post it," Chukwurah said.

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