Sheffield Lake Police Officer Keith Pool was recently the subject of a racist “joke” at work and now he’s trying to make sure that none of his coworkers have the same experience. News 5 in Ohio reports that Pool is filing a discrimination charge after his former supervisor Anthony Campo referenced the Ku Klux Klan while making a joke toward him in the workplace. Pool is now seeking to obtain records from the city pertaining to any other racist incidents that Campo may have been involved in as a member of the Sheffield Lake Police Department in Ohio.
The incident in question took place on June 25. Video obtained by News 5 shows then Sheffield Laker Police Chief Anthony Campo placing a yellow raincoat on what appears to be Pool’s desk. On the back of the coat, the word, “Police,” appears to be written in bold, black letters. However, Campo leaves a note on top of the lettering that reads, “Ku Klux Klan.”
After placing the coat on the desk, Campo walks out of the room and Pool walks into the room. Shortly thereafter, Campo returns, points to the yellow raincoat and walks back out. Pool picks up the note and raincoat before a few other officers walk into the room.
“Even when I watch it now, I am in disbelief that this happened to me,” Pool told News 5.
According to Pool, Campo called other officers over to show them what he had done.
“My my exact words were, are you serious? And I just looked at him and left it,” Pool explained to News 5.
“What else can you say to the chief of police who’s done something so heinous? It’s so awful.”
Four days after the incident, Campo was placed on administrative leave. Not long thereafter, he submitted his resignation. He did not deny leaving the note for Pool, but rather referred to his actions as a “joke that got out of hand.”
Pool did not find any humor in what Campo referred to as a “joke.” In fact, he says this part of a long pattern of disturbing behavior displayed by Campo
“This was not the first time doing something racist and offensive to me or other employees,” Pool told News 5.
“It was just the first time they got caught on video.”
With legal action, Pool and his attorneys are seeking the release of other documents showing “racist images Campo generated and posted while on duty.”
“If it wasn’t bad enough that the former police chief was engaged in rampant racist workplace harassment, now the city that hired him appears to be helping to cover it up,” Joseph C.Peiffer of Peiffer Wolf Carr Kane & Conway told News 5.
“Racial harassment has no place in law enforcement, and we will ensure that the City of Sheffield Lake will face a reckoning for all of the despicable behavior conducted by its former Police Chief.”
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