NYPD Fires Workplace Anti-Harassment Head for Harassment

NEW YORK -
New York Police Department officers in masks. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File)

The New York Police Department fired Deputy Inspector James Kobel, the department’s anti-harassment official, after it was revealed he was posting hateful anonymous messages online against minorities.

Under a pseudonym, Kobel mocked African-American politicians, people with disabilities, Muslims, Jews, and used offensive language against female coworkers.

The case was opened when City Council’s oversight division found the messages on a social media forum and presented their investigation to the NYPD in November. Kobel was suspended in January.

An internal investigation found that Kobel used his work cellphone to post the messages, the New York Times reported.

“He should have been fired months ago,” said former City Council member and now Bronx Congressman Ritchie Torres, who headed the City Council’s investigation. “And in almost all workplaces he would have been fired instantaneously. But policing in America is an alternate reality where accountability is hard to come by.”

Police Commissioner Dermot F. Shea, who fired Kobel, said in a statement, “His misconduct was so egregious and so contradicts the values of this department that ultimate accountability was essential.”

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smarcus@hamodia.com