Thanks to the prevalence of camera phones and social media, it’s becoming more common for law enforcement officers to get caught acting in unethical ways. Unfortunately, the fact that they’re more likely to get caught doesn’t seem to deter officers from abusing their power.
The latest officer to come under fire is Tracy Keen, a DeSoto County, Florida probation officer who was caught on video cursing and yelling a racial slur at a man who was helping his father — a FEMA contractor — clean up debris on Saturday.
The man who shot the video — who wished to remain anonymous — told Fox 4 Now, a local Fox News affiliate, about the incident:
‘I had to get it on tape because it was outrageous. I couldn’t believe the stuff she was saying.
She started cursing and telling us we couldn’t be there.’
He explained that Keen pulled over and walked towards them, demanding that they move their trucks so that she could pass through the narrow road. She then started yelling racial slurs.
‘She proceeded to call us names like F-ing Mexicans. We’re just trying to clean up her street. It’s completely demoralizing.’
The Florida Department of Corrections issued the following statement to Fox 4 Now regarding Keen’s behavior:
‘The actions of this individual are distasteful and uncalled for. Her behavior is in no way a reflection of the hundreds of probation officers around the state that work diligently to serve and protect Florida’s communities every day. The Department is thoroughly reviewing this incident and will determine the appropriate action.’
Scott Weinberg, an attorney with Brown Suarez Rios & Weinberg in Punta Gorda also suggested that Keen should lose her job:
‘Anyone in the probation department needs to have consideration for minorities and everybody else and the fact that she was willing to do this and this wasn’t the first time I’ve heard goes to show she is biased and shouldn’t be in a position of power for the probation department.’
The man who was a victim of her racism agrees with Weinberg. He explained:
‘She could do something to someone that doesn’t deserve it just because she’s racist towards them.’
He also said that he’s never experienced an attack like that before:
‘I’ve never really experienced this personally. When I saw it, it really shocked me. I’m so proud of my Mexican heritage. No person should be treated that way.’
Watch a news report about the incident in the video below, courtesy of Fox 4 Now.
Featured image via Brian Blanco/Getty Images.