Northampton Police Chief Wastes 2 Months Of Taxpayer Dollars To Investigate Who Sent Publicly Available Information To Turtleboy Sports
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High Five Friday is the story that just won’t die. Turtleboy Sports made national headlines two months ago when we broke the news that the Northampton Police Department was canceling its community policing initiative, “High 5 Fridays,” at elementary schools, because 12-15 parents complained that it the sight of armed police officers would trigger students of color and undocumented immigrants.
— Northampton Police (@NorthamptonPD) January 6, 2017
— Northampton Police (@NorthamptonPD) December 16, 2016
The whole thing was embarrassing for the town. They looked ridiculous and became a laughingstock for the entire country. After all, no rational person can honestly say that kids would be triggered by a high five from Officer Friendly. Since then over 40 towns in Western MA and the South Shore have begun doing high five Fridays out of spite.
But instead of just telling the 12-15 whiny losers who ruined this nice thing to buzz off, Northampton’s Chief of Police Jody Kasper, who is herself a social justice warrior masquerading as a cop, did an internal investigation to find out who gave this story to Turtleboy:
Hampshire Gazette: Some two months after the Northampton Police Department’s High-Five Friday program ended on a sour note, the department completed an investigation into how internal information ended up in the clutches of Turtleboysports.com.
“Although this information would have been available through a public records request, its release was not in compliance with departmental policies,” Chief Jody Kasper said in a statement released Thursday.
She said there were two pieces of information released in a manner that violated department policies: an email from Capt. John Cartledge announcing a decision to end the program, and a police log item regarding one of the parents who had voiced concerns about the High-Five Fridays program being insensitive to students of color. The parent’s partner later became the subject of a fiery post by the blog, which dubbed the apparently misidentified parent a “social justice warrior.”
“In this case it was surprising to see an internal email out there in the media, so we wanted to know why that happened, and certainly make sure it wouldn’t happen again,” Kasper said.
So let me get this straight. The internal email we published was public records. And she’s wasting the taxpayer’s money on an investigation as to who tipped off the public to this publicly available information? Yup, that about sums up the priorities of Chief Kasper.
Kasper said the investigating officer identified a colleague who sent a photo of the email to “several individuals and that this was the image that later appeared in the media.” Kasper declined to name the officer, and said he admitted to the breach “early on in the matter.”
We have no idea who the cop is that took a picture of the email. We could’ve just filed a FOIA but that takes a couple weeks. And someone sent us the picture anonymously, so we published it. God forbid.
“Our understanding of his intent in sending the image was to correct information that was currently being spread through rumors,” she said. “He received a formal reprimand for the policy violations. He made an error in judgment and I believe he realizes that error.”
It’s almost as if the officer wanted the public to know that a program that benefitted the public was being cancelled due to the fictional concerns of a handful of professional malcontents.
Kasper said the investigating officer was unable to identify how the police log item was released.
We obtained the police log item, showing that the same mother who whined about High 5 Friday, ended up calling the cops asked for more patrols on their street after we broke the story. Because….irony.
Someone answering questions under the Twitter handle @TurtleBoySports said the information came from an anonymous source.
“Funny that they tried to cover that up and became a national embarrassment,” said the person, declining to identify themselves because “our brand is built on anonymity.” “But instead of fixing their mistake they’re going after whistle blowers. Sad day for the truth.”
Kasper said she would have authorized the two-month internal investigation regardless of whom the information was leaked to.
“Every time we have any sort of policy violation, that’s concerning for us — truthfully, it really doesn’t matter where it went to,” she said. “It’s not supposed to go out that way and we needed to look into it. We are responsible for the integrity of our internal records.”
The bottom line is, this is a chief of police who is concerned about all the wrong things. It doesn’t matter who gave Turtleboy the news. What matters is the news itself. And for that she has had no accountability, and is attempting to deflect blame by going after her officers. Northampton is a joke. This is one town we have no desire to reform. No point. They’re beyond fixable. We can work with places like Worcester and Spencer and Holyoke, where a good percentage of the people reject this delusional line of thinking. But Northampton is owned and operated by nutjobs. It’s their own little island of wackiness, and as usual, everyone on the outside is laughing at them.
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