In an August decision made public Tuesday, the New Jersey Civil Service Commission refused to overturn the firing of a corrections officer who reportedly exchanged racist text messages with co-workers in group chats on cellphones smuggled into Camden County Jail, the Courier-Post reports.
According to the report, Thomas McNulty was one of nine officers working at the jail who were fired for "abhorrent conduct" after their controversial text messages surfaced last November. The commission upheld a judge's ruling in July that McNulty and his fellow officers exchanged "highly inflammatory and racist" messages during group chats at the jail.
The ruling pointed out that more than 5,700 texts, which were not shared with black officers, regularly used a variation of the n-word and spared no one, from co-workers and superiors to inmates and "blacks in general."
Warren David Owens, who is black, was referred to as "HNIC," reportedly standing for "head n—ger in charge."
The texts also included images of "confidential information on the corrections center computer," as well as photos and videos of officers and inmates. Personal cellphones, the Courier-Post notes, are not allowed in the jail and photography is prohibited.
County spokesman Dan Keashen said in a statement Tuesday that the county's board of freeholders "applauds the [commission's] decision upholding termination and anticipates the same ruling affirming the county's firing of the additional eight employees."
Read more at the Courier-Post.