Author: The Office of Justice Programs’ National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Matt Durr MLive.com, Walker, Mich.
DETROIT — Nearly two weeks after Detroit Police chief James Craig fired an officer over a racially charged Snapchat post, Craig announced Tuesday a second officer has been fired as part of an investigation into the incident.
“I’ve made the decision to terminate officer (Michael) Garrison from the Detroit Police Department,” Craig said during a press conference Tuesday.
Garrison was fired after an internal affairs investigation into the incident revealed he failed to report the video taken by his partner former officer Gary Steele. Garrison also made racist comments about the woman in the video and lied to investigators about details of the incident.
Craig also said Garrison neglected his duties in keeping the public safe. In total, 11 allegations were made against Garrison, all of which were sustained according to Craig.
As part of his decision, Craig also said he considered Garrison’s history as an officer, specifically citing a 2014 issue involving improper discharging of his weapon and lying to investigators about that case. He was initially removed from the department, but won an appeal and eventually served a 60-day suspension before being restored to the force.
Craig said Garrison made no apology for his action when he was fired.
Report about the actions of Steele and Garrison are being prepared by Detroit police to be turned over to the Wayne County Prosecutor’s Office for consideration of possible criminal charges.
The two officers were fired after a Snapchat video allegedly filmed by Steele showed a young woman walking in the bitter cold. The video contained filters with the phrases “What black girl magic looks like” and “celebrating Black History Month” on them.
Craig said the investigations of both men followed proper union standardized protocol and was conducted using interviews of more than 60 people.
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