Columbia Police Officers Association Issues Public Apology
COLUMBIA - The Columbia Police Officers Association issued a public apology regarding a post on their Facebook page that was posted on Tuesday the 19th. The Police Department had been working to get the City Council's approval for purchase of a new armored personnel carrier; a Mercedes 6x16 to be exact. CPOA Executive Director Dale Roberts stated in a post, "if CPD rolled up in the new Mercedes 6x16, you KNOW all the boys in the hood would come running out the house." Roberts issued a public apology on Thursday the 21st, reading as follows:
"Statement of Dale Roberts, Executive Director:
On March 19th, 2013, I posted a story about the new Mercedes 6x16 and a comparison between it and the Armored Personnel Carrier needed by the Police Department, on the Columbia Police Officers' Association (CPOA) Facebook page.
One of the justifications offered for an Armored Personnel Carrier was the theory that the mere appearance of such a vehicle would be enough to make someone drop their weapon and come running out of the house. I countered that, if that were the case, the new Mercedes 6x16 truck would be even more effective at drawing people out.
Although intended to be satirical in nature, the post was taken out of context and perceived to be quite different than intended. As soon as this sentiment was voiced, I publicly apologized and I immediately deleted it from our Facebook page.
In as much as the post was removed with 40 minutes of appearing and the apology was issued at that same time, I have been at a loss as to how to respond to the demand several days later, from the Mayor's campaign for yet another public apology.
Nevertheless, I have no reservation about stating now what I stated three days ago. I apologize if the post was read to be something different than intended. I removed it immediately and am glad that I did, and I regret any misunderstanding it may have caused.
The message which was read into the post was clearly not the view of the Columbia Police Department, the Columbia Police Officer's Association, nor did the misconception in any way reflect my own views or attitudes.
The Columbia Police Officers' Association, on behalf of our members, strives to build a positive working relationship with the administration of the Columbia Police Department, the leaders of the City of Columbia, and the citizens our members serve."
Columbia Mayor Bob McDavid called for CPOA to make its public apology.