Thursday, September 18, 2014
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Black officers sue Phila. police for alleged online racism

An association of black police officers sued the Philadelphia Police Department in federal court yesterday for allowing its officers to post "blatantly racist, anti-minority, disgusting and offensive" content on a popular website devoted to law enforcement topics.

Black officers sue Phila. police for alleged online racism

A group representing black police officers has sued the Philadelphia Police Department over racist comments posted on domelights.com. (Alejandro A. Alvarez / Staff Photographer)
A group representing black police officers has sued the Philadelphia Police Department over racist comments posted on domelights.com. (Alejandro A. Alvarez / Staff Photographer)

Inquirer Staff Writer Troy Graham reports:

An association of black police officers sued the Philadelphia Police Department in federal court yesterday for allowing its officers to post “blatantly racist, anti-minority, disgusting and offensive” content on a popular website devoted to law enforcement topics.

The suit says that domelights.com, which bills itself as “the voice of the good guys,” was founded and is moderated by an active duty Philadelphia police sergeant who uses the name “McQ” in his postings.

Sgt. McQ “encourages the racially offensive conduct,” according to the lawsuit.

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The Guardian Civic League also sued McQ and the website. The Philadelphia NAACP and the National Association of Black Law Enforcement Officers joined the league as plaintiffs.

The league said that white police officers post and moderate the site while on duty, sometimes in front of black officers.

On-duty posting contributes to “a racially offensive and hostile employment environment” for black officers, the suit said.

Even the word “domelights,” which normally refers to the police lights on top of cruisers, has taken on an “insulting connotation” among black officers, according to the lawsuit.

The suit cites one posting that reads, “Guns don’t kill people … dangerous minorities do.”

A police spokesman said the department doesn’t comment on lawsuits.

Read more breaking news in our From The Source blog.

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