Officer Brian Valenti of Coconut Creek, Florida, was suspended for five days after writing on Facebook about his hope that a student survivor from the Parkland, Florida, massacre would be hit by a car.
The 23-year K-9 officer wrote that he hoped an old lady would lose control of her car and kill Parkland survivor David Hogg, who helped organize a peaceful “die-in” protest at Publix grocery stores to protest Publix for donating hundreds of thousands of dollars to a pro-gun candidate who supports the NRA.
The Sun-Sentinel reports that Valenti “later deleted the post, but not before a woman who lives out of state spotted it and sent an email and screenshot to the chief.”
Coconut Creek Police Chief Butch Arenal addressed the Facebook post to WFOR:
He made a horrible error in judgment. When we are on or off duty we have a special role in our community and he understands that. He is extremely remorseful and is very embarrassed by the situation.
If we felt in any way, shape or form that this was an actual threat against people, with an intent to carry it out, obviously that would be a completely different set of circumstances.
There’s just nothing worse that could happen than to create a perception that out officers have any ill will towards these kids.
Hogg and his mother are expected to meet with Arenal, and possibly Officer Valenti.
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