The Ohio police officer heard using a racial slur and swearing repeatedly on her body-worn camera has officially been fired.
The Cincinnati City Manager’s office reportedly made the announcement Monday, according to the Enquirer, approving the recommendation from the Cincinnati Police Department to fire Officer Rose Valentino.
“I want to be clear; this type of hateful speech will not be tolerated by anyone who works for the Cincinnati Police Department, sworn or civilian,” Interim Police Chief Teresa Theetge said in a statement, according to the Enquirer.
Valentino was heard cursing and insulting drivers in vehicles who were in line to pick up students from Western Hills University High School on April 5.
Valentino, who according to local ABC affiliate WCPO has been with the police department for 14 years, activated her siren in lights in an effort to get the drivers to move. When they didn’t, she got angry, and rolled down her window to tell them to move.
A Black male student walking by flipped Valentino off, according to reports, and that’s when Valentino let her stream of swears and insults fly.
“I f****** hate them,” she is heard saying, according to a report from local ABC affiliate WCPO. “Oh, I f****** hate them so much. F****** God. I hate this f****** world. F****** hate it.”
“F****** n******s. I f****** hate them,” she is later heard saying, uttering the anti-Black racial slur under her breath.
Valentino was on duty and driving a marked police car at the time. She later said she was “frustrated due to the traffic and individuals not taking her seriously,” according to a report from local NBC affiliate WLWT.
In her statement to the Enquirer, Theetge said that many factors went into the decision to recommend Valentino’s termination.
As the Interim Chief of the Cincinnati Police Department there are many things that I must take into consideration when determining the appropriate discipline for an officer’s misconduct. Most importantly, I must consider the community’s trust. In law enforcement, the community’s trust is the foundation of what gives us the authority to perform our duties. Officer Valentino’s agitated demeanor and the statement she made while on duty is not only inexcusable and incredibly hurtful, but it damages the public’s trust we have worked so hard to build over the past 20 years, since the inception of the Collaborative Agreement.
As the Interim Police Chief, I must also weigh Officer Valentino’s future ability to police a diverse community that relies upon an impartial party to protect and serve. Officer Valentino’s clear loss of her emotions and ready use of the racial slur tarnished her ability to work with any community member or member of the Cincinnati Police Department hurt by her hateful words. This significantly reduces, if not eliminates, Officer Valentino’s ability to be a productive member of the police department.
“No Cincinnati police officer should use the N-word or any other racial slur and anyone who does is wrong,” Sgt. Dan Hils, president of Cincinnati’s police union, said in a statement, according to the Enquirer. “Officer Valentino is entitled to challenge her termination and the FOP will represent her if she does.”
[Image via scgreengrab/WCPO.]
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