SAN FRANCISCO (KCBS)– The decision to not notify San Francisco Police Chief Greg Suhr for two years of racist and homophobic texts exchanged between several of his officers may end up preventing the chief from disciplining the officers involved.
Earlier this month, Suhr announced he planned to fire eight officers after their suspensions and wanted to discipline six others for the their involvement in the sending and receiving of the texts.
Federal prosecutors knew of the texts for over two years, but only disclosed them publicly in December of last year in a court filing after the convictions of former Police Sergeant Ian Furminger and Officer Edmond Robles on charges of stealing money and property from drug dealers and crime scenes.
The San Francisco Chronicle reported the decision to shield Suhr from the information of the text messages was not required by a federal court order as previously believed. The Internal Affairs department knew of the texts, but choose to not notify Suhr.
The accused officers have argued they should not be punished for the texts because the department didn’t act within the one year required deadline to take disciplinary action.
Suhr has said he was walled off from the texts, either by court order or the federal prosecutor’s office.
The Police Commission will ultimately decide the fate of the officers.