San Francisco Police Under Fire For Racist, Homophobic Texts
This began with another shocking accusation: that six officers stole from drug dealers.
Lawyers for several implicated officers characterized the text messages as “banter” and failed attempts at humor. In one, Sgt. Yulanda Williams was called racist and sexist names by one of the texting officers when she was promoted to sergeant in 2011.
“We really have not moved as forward as we thought,” she said. “I’m not prepared to say this was an isolated incident. This is just the tip of the iceberg.”
At least one of the accused officers, Michael Robinson, is white and openly gay. Another, Sgt. Ian Furminger, is white. Police officials have so far declined to release the racial composition of the other implicated officers.
Officer Rain Daugherty said in a lawsuit filed Monday to halt his termination that he is “deeply ashamed” of the texts he wrote and that they are “unreflective of his strong commitment to exemplary community policing of all San Francisco’s diverse citizens.” Daugherty argues that he and the other officers shouldn’t be fired because the department obtained the inflammatory texts in December 2012 but didn’t start the disciplinary process until two years later.
The department says the texts were part of the corruption investigation and couldn’t be disclosed to administrators until the criminal cases concluded.