Officer Jay Perkins of the Oelwein Police Department was photographed wiping his ass on a Hillary campaign sign. In his hand was a gun. This is a freakin’ hilarious display of freedom of speech, but now liberals have their panties in a wad; claiming that a police officer can not do such a thing. If the cop is off duty though, he is just an everyday citizen. Do these whiney liberals need to STFU?
When an Oelwein Police Department reserve officer “mooned” and pointed a gun at a Hillary Clinton yard sign, was it legally protected free expression or misconduct meriting disciplinary action?
That’s the debate after a photo of the act surfaced on social media last week.
The incident has prompted an “internal review,” Oelwien Police Chief Jeremy Logan said.
Whether reserve officer Jay Perkins should face discipline depends on whether he was serving in an official capacity when the photo was taken, according to legal experts.
The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that a police officer can be subject to discipline for political speech or behavior if it’s done in an “official capacity,” said Rita Bettis, legal director for the American Civil Liberties Union of Iowa. “So here, the factors like whether the officer was on duty or in uniform may play an important part of the analysis,” she said.
Perkins is not wearing a police uniform in the photo. He is grinning widely with his black pants hanging just below his exposed buttocks, which are pointed at a blue Clinton/Kaine sign.
Perkins, who has volunteered for the department for more than 10 years, was not on duty when the photo was taken, Logan wrote Monday in an email to The Des Moines Register. The firearm the reserve officer was holding in the photo was not issued or owned by the eastern Iowa department, the chief wrote.
Logan wrote that he had “addressed the matter,” but he did not respond to a follow-up email about what discipline, if any, could be brought in the incident. Perkins is still pictured and listed as a reserve officer on the department’s website.