Wednesday, 19 September, 2018

Police officer resigns ahead of hearing on Puerto Rico shirt incident

Officer Who Didn’t Step In When Woman In Puerto Rico Shirt Was Harassed Resigns Police officer resigns ahead of hearing on Puerto Rico shirt incident
Andrew Cummings | 14 July, 2018, 05:33

She plans to interview all officers at the scene as well as Irizarry and said the video will be used in future training exercises by the Forest Preserves.

"We are further addressing aspects of this incident and more information will be shared here and with the media tomorrow (July 12)".

He was first charged with the misdemeanor after he was caught on camera accosting Mia Irizarry at a Cooks County Forest Preserve picnic area in June. The recording, taken by the woman involved, shows a man, identified by the police as Timothy Trybus, demanding to know why she has a Puerto Rican flag shirt on and whether the woman, Mia Irizarry, is a US citizen.

The harasser didn't seem to realize that Puerto Rico is, in fact, part of the United States America.

Trybus, who was intoxicated at the time, approached Irizarry because she was wearing a Puerto Rican flag shirt.

Later, she says: "Officer, I feel entirely uncomfortable, can you remove... please, officer" as the officer is seen walking away from her.

Irizarry asks a park police officer to help, saying "I am renting this area and he's harassing me about the shirt that I'm wearing". Trybus was arrested and charged with two counts of felony hate crime, an upgrade of the initial charges against him, which were misdemeanor assault and misdemeanor disorderly conduct. An officer is seen in the background, but doesn't appear to intervene when the situation escalates. Trybus was later charged with disorderly conduct and assault.

"You don't come here harassing people", the officer continues.

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More officers arrived and arrested the man.

Connor, who has been with the force since 2006, was scheduled for a disciplinary hearing Thursday.

At the same conference, the forest preserve district police chief said the officer "should've stepped in".

The officer was put on desk duty while officials investigated the incident, but he resigned this week.

It's not clear when the investigation into the officer's response will be completed. The woman, Mia Irizarry, is heard appealing to the officer to help restrain the man, but the officer doesn't appear to engage until almost 10 minutes later, when other officers arrive.

'People have just as much right to be here as you do, ' she can be heard telling him in the clip. As of Thursday morning, the video had be seen 1.5 million times. "Are you a United States citizen?" he screamed, referring to the shirt as "un-American".

Gov. Ricardo Rossello of Puerto Rico responded to the incident on Twitter.

"(Conner's) personnel file will reflect that this officer did not resign in good standing, with a note indicating that he left the district with discipline pending", the park agency's general superintendent, Arnold Randall, said. I've seen the video and I'm outraged that this would happen anywhere, let alone and especially sad that it happened in our forest preserve system. After the video went viral, the officer no longer has a job. This is not the America we all believe in'.

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