By now we all know about Michigan State Police Col. Kriste Kibbey Etue’s controversial Facebook post, in which she referred to NFL protesters as “ungrateful, anti-American degenerates.”
Many demanded her resignation in response to the meme that was shared on her Facebook page at a time when the MSP was already under scrutiny for its lack of racial diversity and was facing protests over the death of 15-year-old Damon Grimes. The teen died in August after a state trooper deployed a Taser at him through a police-vehicle window during a pursuit, in direct violation of police protocol. Damon crashed the ATV he was driving and died of head trauma.
In general, it’s a bad idea to call people protesting black oppression and police brutality names when you’re director of a department accused of doing exactly those things.
However, Etue, who “apologized” twice, refused to resign, and Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder largely stood by Etue and then announced a slap on the wrist as a disciplinary action: Etue would be losing out on five days’ pay for violating the department’s social media policy.
Now the Detroit Free Press reports that, despite the issues surrounding Etue and the department, when she retires at the end of February, she’ll still be more than good, remaining eligible for a one-time payment of $500,000, plus an annual pension of about $92,000.
Must be nice.
To sweeten the deal further, Snyder has announced that he plans to reappoint Etue as the chief of state troopers after her retirement, allowing her to collect a $165,000 salary on top of her pension through the end of 2018, when Snyder ends his final term.
So was Etue ever really punished? Or is she being rewarded? What’s five days’ pay in light of this information? I have questions. Because it seems strange to me that a supposedly embattled state police director should be handed a cushy job after retirement—but, I mean, I don’t know everything.
Read more at the Detroit Free Press.