Posted 10 days ago
A police officer in Kentucky was fired Friday over allegations that he gave a Black Lives Matter organizer information about other officers working protests that could be used to "insult, intimidate and harass."
Lexingtion police Officer Jervis Middleton was relieved of his duties following a unanimous vote by the Lexington-Fayette Urban County Council after a nine-hour hearing and two hours of closed deliberations, the Lexington Herald-Leader reported.
"Officer Middleton’s conduct during a highly stressful and potentially vulnerable time during the history of our community — the most significant policing event in our community in 20 years — demonstrates that he should no longer be a police officer," said Keith Horn, a lawyer for the city of Lexington, according to the Herald-Leader.
Lexington Police Chief Lawrence Weathers and an internal police disciplinary board had recommended Middleton’s firing over several policy violations for sharing department information and for allegedly lying about it. He had also been demoted recently for a separate complaint related to accusations he used department resources to look up information about a woman he had once been romantically involved with, according to the newspaper.
"I felt like the discipline he received last time should have been a message to him and allow him to come back and become the officer that I know he can be," Weathers said. "After this, I just can’t see him coming back. To me, it was a violation of trust and a violation of the position of a police officer. He was supposed to protect the public, but he should also protect his fellow officers."
The fired officer initially denied sharing information with BLM leader Sarah Williams, a friend, but admitted it when he was shown text messages obtained through a search warrant, city lawyer Horn said.
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