Friday, May 24, 2013 6:03 AM
Published on: Sunday, November 18, 2012
By Jim Davis
Two Prince George’s County police officers have been suspended and could be terminated for appearing in a video called “Driving While Black” posted on YouTube last week.
Prince George’s County Police Department requested the video be removed from the video-sharing site.
The video was supposed to be a funny spoof on racial profiling during a traffic stop, but Police Chief Mark Magaw along with members of the Police Department did not see anything funny about the video.
“We took it very seriously. It’s unacceptable,” Magaw said.
The video simulates a traffic stop with the two county officers wearing their county uniforms and driving a county cruiser.
The two officers were patrol officers from PGPD District V in Clinton. One officer is a 10-year veteran of the department. The other officer has been on the force three years.
The officers were asked by an unnamed actor to be in his video.
Fraternal Order of Police President Vince Canales said everyone in the video was black and he found some real problems with the video, especially given the community’s sensitivity to issues of racial profiling.
“I’m concerned about some of the content. It’s inappropriate and never should have been made. It certainly does not accurately depict the officers who are out there doing the job on a day-to-day basis,” Canales said.
Magaw said the two officers have been placed on leave.
“Both these officers will be held accountable for their actions. They both could be fired,” Magaw said. “It will go through the administrative proceeding just like any other violation. They are entitled to their rights, but the ultimate outcome could be termination.”