NATIONAL CITY, Calif. – An officer with the National City Police Department was under investigation Wednesday for allegedly making racist statements in a private text-message exchange that wound up becoming public.
According to the NCPD, the officer will be on administrative leave pending the results of an in-house probe into the purported inappropriate communications, which were made to a member of his family before being posted on social media.
It was a text making fun of George Floyd’s death that felt like the final straw for Miranda Dykes, who says her former step father had been making a slew of inappropriate comments and using racial slurs for years.
“You can’t joke about that. You’re a police officer, you’re supposed to be protecting them, you’re supposed to be as angry as everybody,” Dykes said.
Dykes posted several of the texts and stories on social media Wednesday morning. She claims her former step father would say things like, “you’re too beautiful to date black guys” and says he called her child a racial slur while she was still pregnant.
“This poor child can’t even talk, can’t even defend himself,” Dykes said.
Dykes says her young son of mixed race was a big motivation for coming forward and speaking out. Her tweets calling out National City Police and the officer received a quick response, but because it’s a personnel matter, the department is not releasing his name. Dykes believes he should be fired.
“That’s my main goal is to make sure that he’s not protecting the citizens of everywhere especially in National City, where my boyfriend works, where there’s plenty of black people,” Dykes said. “I feel like they’re not safe. Him working, ‘protecting’ them.”
In a prepared statement, National City police Chief Jose Tellez asserted that he would not “tolerate racist and unacceptable epithets made by any member of our organization.”
“We are extremely disappointed that we have to conduct an investigation into one of our officers’ alleged misconduct,” Tellez said. “However, we want to assure the public and our community that there will be a comprehensive investigation into this matter.”
Mayor Alejandra Sotelo-Solis thanked the police chief for his “swift action” in addressing the controversy and said she wanted her constituents to know that “we cannot and will not tolerate this type of racial bias — or any bias for that matter — or (racially insensitive) behavior from our officers, city staff or elected officials.”
“As public servants, we must be above reproach, and I fully support the investigation that has been prompted by these social-media posts,” Sotelo-Solis added.