Valentine’s Day is a time for couples and lovers of all walks of life to celebrate their bonds through the exchanging of flowers, candy, spa days, hot-oil massages and the like—it’s a day to commemorate love. In fact, officers with the Los Angeles Police Department are reportedly so into the festivities that they decided to celebrate their first true love: Dead and brutalized Black people.
KTLA 5 reports that the LAPD has launched an internal investigation into a complaint from one officer that other officers had circulated a photo of George Floyd formatted like a Valentine’s Day card that read, “You take my breath away”—a reference to Floyd telling officers “I can’t breathe” before he died after a cop kneeled on his neck for nearly nine minutes.
LAPD Chief Michel Moore confirmed that he received the complaint from the unidentified officer.
Moore said the officer who made the complaint is set to be interviewed Monday, and the department’s goal is to determine exactly where and how the image may have come into the workplace, online or otherwise, and who may have been involved.
“Our investigation is to determine the accuracy of the allegations while also reinforcing our zero tolerance for anything with racist views,” the chief said.
If the department confirms officers were circulating the image, “people will find my wrath,” Moore said.
It wouldn’t be the first time police officers shamelessly mocked victims of police brutality in what they thought was behind closed doors.
This story is reminiscent of the time Aurora, Colo., police officers circulated photos among themselves of cops reenacting the police chokehold that led to the death of Elijah McClain—photos that they took near a McClain memorial.
There’s also the former-Florida police officer who got fired over bigoted Facebook posts including a meme with the words “BLM Activists in Wisconsin paint street mural in support of Jacob Blake,” next to a photo of a handicapped parking spot—a reference to Blake being paralyzed from the waist down after being shot by a Kenosha, Wis., police officer.
When “back the blue” people push the “only a few bad apples” narrative, they’re not including cops like these in the bunch. But if a cop will celebrate or display willful indifference towards police brutality then they’ll also commit it, as far as a lot of Black people are concerned. Shit like this is disgusting and officers who engage in it should not be patrolling our streets.