Home / News / Trump-Loving Chicago Cop Under Fire for Racist Facebook Posts—and There Are Plenty More Like Him

Trump-Loving Chicago Cop Under Fire for Racist Facebook Posts—and There Are Plenty More Like Him

In September, Chicago Police Officer John Catanzara done headlines after posting on Facebook a picture of himself, in uniform, holding an American dwindle and a homemade sign that read, “I mount for the anthem. we adore the American flag. we support my boss and the 2nd Amendment.”

He was reprimanded for violating manners that demarcate officers from making domestic statements while on duty. But if that fortify was dictated to change his ways on social media, Catanzara instead is vital up to the difference he uses to news himself on Facebook: “A give no f#$%s, contend it like it is man.”

Since he was trained last fall, the maestro officer has remained outspoken and defiant, posting inflammatory element about women, gratification recipients and those who remonstrate with his politics.

He has tangled with Facebook users who doubt him. “Keep listening for that hit on the door,” he responded to one critic.

And, some-more than once, he has boasted that he will continue to equivocate critical punishment. Police superintendents have twice tried to fire him, yet he appealed the efforts and won.


“The police dept didn’t and CAN’T fire me,” he wrote last fall, after the dwindle post went viral.

Now, ProPublica Illinois has schooled that the city’s police watchdog organisation is conducting two investigations into Catanzara’s social media control in response to allegations of created abuse and duress for comments he done on Facebook and Instagram. The Civilian Office of Police Accountability, which investigates police misconduct, instituted the investigations in the days following Catanzara’s dwindle post last year.

Catanzara, 49, already is among the many trained officers in the department. The 23-year maestro has been dangling 7 times for a sum of 111 days.

He was named in at slightest one progressing censure of secular or ethnic-targeted created abuse, but the claim was not sustained.

In a brief phone call, Catanzara told ProPublica Illinois he was unknowingly of the investigations into his social media conduct.

“Don’t really caring either,” he said. He hung up before addressing the complaints.

One of the new complaints was lodged by Catanzara’s district commander, who purported that Catanzara displayed “bigoted views” and “hostile remarks” on social media and sent “inappropriate emails” to the staff at Hubbard High School on the city’s Southwest Side, where he worked as the school’s officer.

Catanzara, reserved to the Chicago Lawn District, was private from his position at the school after the dwindle post. He stays on unit in that district, according to the police department.

“The accused officer has done posts on social media pursuit for the murder of college students, insulting statements against those participating in social programs, and settled that officers should not try to follow offenders,” according to the allegation, done on Sept. 28. The claim also says Catanzara done “hostile remarks against Muslims, sexist remarks about women and liberals, and remarks about Michelle Obama.”

A second complaint, reported Sept. 29, came from a lady who pronounced Catanzara threatened her on Instagram. She reported that he wrote: “I have a camber we competence cranky paths one day,” according to papers obtained under the Freedom of Information Act.

“The stating victim settled that she believes the matter to be a threat,” the claim states. As partial of its investigation, COPA obtained screenshots of Instagram comments done under a photo of Catanzara holding the flag, annals show. But COPA would not yield copies of the Facebook and Instagram screen shots given the investigations are pending.

Catanzara private from open perspective the initial dwindle post and scarcely all posts before then.

It is not famous which of Catanzara’s posts or comments are enclosed in the COPA investigations.

One post, noticed by ProPublica before it was removed, showed an picture of a man unconditional up rabble left after last year’s Women’s Mar and the words, “Male Privilege: Cleaning up after females marching on Washington to criticism male privilege.”

The police dialect pronounced it does not guard officers’ social media, but it prohibits officers from posting “content that is adverse to a person or organisation formed on race, religion, passionate orientation, or any other stable class.” The dialect also prohibits “any communications that disprove or simulate feeble on the department, its missions or goals.”

The new allegations against Catanzara come as a U.S. Department of Justice review last year found Chicago police have faced little or no repercussions for enchanting in racially discriminatory conduct, including on social media.

The Justice Department, in its report, pronounced it had “serious concerns about the superiority of racially discriminatory control by some CPD officers.”

“Some Chicago police officers voiced discriminatory views and dogmatism with courtesy to race, religion, gender, and inhabitant start in open social media forums, and … CPD takes deficient stairs to forestall or reasonably respond to this animus,” according to the report.

Federal authorities found that 1.3 percent of bungle complaints alleging created abuse by police on the basement of race or ethnicity were inspected in new years.

A ProPublica Illinois research of Chicago police bungle complaints from the past 5 decades found that of 2,733 complaints coded as discriminatory created abuse on the basement of race or ethnicity, only 81 — or about 3 percent — were upheld.

In the cases that were sustained, officers faced little punishment. More than half of the officers perceived possibly a rebuke or a one-day suspension, annals show.

Only one officer has been fired for this form of discriminatory created abuse, the ProPublica Illinois research found. That officer was fired in 2003 for forwarding messages that enclosed secular slurs, passionate innuendos and profanity, annals show.

COPA endorsed in Nov that Officer Brian Hansen be fired for breaking mixed police manners when he regularly posted “racially insensitive, xenophobic, Islamophobic and discriminatory” element on Facebook. He also had an “offensive decal” on his vehicle, the organisation concluded.

COPA resolved that Hansen, a 25-year veteran, intent in “reprehensible conduct” that left “no doubt … that PO Hansen can't live out the department’s mission.” The fortify recommendation is now tentative before Supt. Eddie Johnson. Hansen is now on table duty.

A Chicago police orator pronounced the dialect “expects its members to yield everybody with forthrightness and honour regardless of their race, gender, course or ability both on and off-duty, including on private social media accounts.”

“We take seriously any allegations to the contrary, as such acts harm the holds of open trust that are required for open safety,” orator Frank Giancamilli pronounced in a created statement. “In several instances where officers have publicly voiced their personal opinions on controversial domestic issues, they were met with 0 tolerance.”

Police officials pronounced there has been a diminution in complaints of secular and racial created abuse in new years.

Catanzara’s many new troubles began in late Sep when he posted the dwindle picture days after a photo of two other police officers holding a knee went viral. At the time, NFL players were kneeling during the inhabitant anthem, a criticism that began as a way to bring courtesy to the police diagnosis of minorities.

Police officials reprimanded Catanzara as good as the other two officers.

Catanzara unsuccessfully challenged the discipline.

In memos to his supervisors in late Sep and early October, obtained by ProPublica Illinois, Catanzara pronounced the picture and his summary were patriotic, not political. In the first memo, he called himself “a unapproachable American who was trying to combine people with the elementary things that make us all American.” He also asked to be backed to the post at the high school, where he pronounced he had worked for 4 years.

Catanzara also pronounced he wanted to make it transparent “that he will in no way accept any punishment that the dialect attempts to plate out but a fight.”

In a second memo, after he was released a reprimand, Catanzara again pronounced his matter was not domestic and therefore did not violate dialect policy. “These are tough times in America and the universe and (I stand) with my boss in putting American first and back on the a (sic) better track,” he wrote. “This dialect needs to stop backpedaling to open vigour in fear of protests from groups with slight agendas and make a mount in support of what’s right.”

Catanzara, an officer given Jan 1995, has been named in at slightest 46 bungle complaints, annals show, and has been dangling 7 times.

His suspensions operation from 6 to 30 days for complaints that embody insubordination and other issues. Only 7 officers who have worked in the dialect as prolonged have been dangling as often.

In 2008, Catanzara was systematic fired for disobeying an order, but the Chicago Police Board found him not guilty and easy him to his position but discipline. In 2012, police officials tried to fire him for operative a second pursuit while on medical leave and providing a fake matter to investigators reviewing his conduct. The Police Board instead systematic a 20-day suspension.

In further to two ongoing investigations into his social media conduct, Catanzara also is the theme of a third review involving the nonessential display of a weapon. Because the claim involves a juvenile, COPA declined to yield additional information. That review has been open for some-more than two years.

Catanzara also has a tentative censure against an officer in his district.

Catanzara pronounced he was not astounded that COPA had not told him about the tentative investigations into his social media conduct.

“They are back ass,” he said. “They do all the way they wish to. It is no opposite than IPRA. Same foolish agency, just a opposite name. You can quote me on that,” he said, referring to the now-defunct city organisation that COPA replaced.

After similar to pronounce with a reporter, Catanzara then abruptly finished the call, saying: “The police dialect doesn’t wish policemen to talk, so we can’t give the opinions freely.”

First Amendment consultant David Hudson, a Vanderbilt University law highbrow who has created about the issue of open employees and free debate rights, pronounced there are many instances of police officers’ social media use coming under inspection in new years. He pronounced the “line is really hazy” about what is allowed under the law.

“There are certain statements that may be cryptic for officers to make. To contend they can’t make any domestic statements at all is going too far,” he said. He pronounced police officers’ debate is arguably reduction stable given the pursuit requires them to offer all forms of people in a village and showing a disposition could impede their ability to do that.

He pronounced melancholy comments are problematic. “You just don’t do that, generally an officer. You can’t be melancholy people or melancholy to use police resources to retort against people,” he said.

In a 21-minute Facebook live video in late September, Catanzara pronounced he was “not ashamed of things I’ve put on my profile.”

“They competence be descent to some but the elementary indicate is people are picking and selecting what posts they wish to make descent and some of them are really ridiculous,” he said. He pronounced that as a police officer, his amusement may be jaded, but that he creates “no excuses for my posts.”

He pronounced his disciplinary story is the outcome of trumped-up charges.

“It’s been all for nonsense and it is formed on plea given we do pronounce out … for what we trust in,” he concluded. “And we am not interlude today.”

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