SAN ANTONIO, TX – Wearing the trademark red caps of GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump Tuesday, while on duty, is the reason San Antonio police officers will be facing disciplinary measures for violating city policies. The caps bear the slogan “Make America Great Again.”
A footage showing a group of police officers who smile and pose with Trump while another officer takes the photo disgusted a lot of anti-Trump and other citizens who believe that police and community relations have been increasingly strained.
In the video, Trump can be heard saying, “thank you, fellas,” and some officers respond with a “thank you, sir,” others with a thumbs-up sign while wearing the red caps.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 11, 2016
Tess House, a civil rights lawyer in San Antonio, considers the officer’s display of support as inappropriate since they are on duty.
“They were acting within the scope of their employment. We’re talking about taxpayer money. They are on duty and abusing their position in order to take a stance and support a political candidate,” House said.
Police Chief William McManus said the officers involved in the video would be disciplined.
Statement from Police Chief William McManus: pic.twitter.com/iBBKvMOpuE
— City of San Antonio (@COSAGOV) October 12, 2016
Given recent news regarding the candidate, some are worried about the impact the video will make on victims of sexual assault. There are others concerned about the message the community will receive from the videos regarding the police officers.
In a tweet, Mayor Ivy Taylor expressed her deep disappointment criticizing the officer’s lack of judgment.
— Ivy R Taylor (@IvyRTaylor) October 12, 2016
The officers were part of the police department’s motorcycle unit that escorted Trump’s motorcade to and from the San Antonio International Airport, mySA reported.
On the other hand, San Antonio police union president Mike Helle doesn’t seem all that concerned. “Dignitaries and celebrities often visit San Antonio and treat our police officers with great kindness, respect, and courtesy,” he said in a prepared statement Tuesday night. “Frankly, the officers were most likely caught up in the moment and did not consider the political nature of their actions.”