GROSSE POINT PARK (WWJ) – A Grosse Pointe Park police officer has been removed from duty after admitting he shot a demeaning video of a mentally-challenged African American man.
The officer’s name is not being released.
He told a man identified as 55 year-old Michael Scipio of Detroit to sing and make animal noises while the officer recorded the incident with his cell phone camera.
Scipio lives near the Detroit-Grosse Pointe Park border and has had previous contact with police in the suburb.
Grosse Pointe Park spokesman Greg Bowens says “An officer has stepped forward to take responsibility and has been removed from duty pending the conclusion of an investigation.”
Bowens offered an apology, saying “This is not a true reflection of the people of the City of Grosse Pointe Park.”
The video made headlines, driven by a largely unsubstantiated report by a local blogger that a slurry of Grosse Pointe Park cops had shot and shared demeaning videos of black people — some of which where, he said, they were forced to act like monkeys. That accusation and the implication that there exists a department-wide culture of racism has not been proven.
No other videos have surfaced, and contrary to the initial headlines, this single cop is the only one who has been implicated in any wrongdoing.
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